General Director : Alexander Zhirkov


Company profile

The All-Russia Research and Development Institute of Electric Locomotive Engineering (VElNII) is the only research center in Russia in the field of electric locomotive engineering.

Main-line electric locomotives developed in VElNII are used for all cargo and approximately 30% of passenger transportation on electrified railways in Russia.

Locomotives designed in Novocherkassk are also operated on railways of Finland, Poland, China, Ukraine and Kazakhstan.

Business activities

The main types of activities of VElNII are research and development, design, production, servicing and other types of works in the field of electric locomotive engineering.

Experts of the institute resolve a large quantity of complicated scientific and technical issues, among which are:

  • development of design documentation for manufacture of main-line electric locomotives, EMUs and other electric equipment for railway and other rail transport;
  • research works in the field of locomotive engineering;
  • commissioning works, various types of tests of electric locomotives, units and other equipment for rail transports;
  • development and testing of advanced development insulation systems for traction engines of electric locomotives;
  • product and enterprise manufacturing facilities certification tests;
  • calibration of control instruments;
  • development, manufacture and implementation of special testing equipment for electric machinery and devices of low and high power, and also rail transport;
  • patent protection and patent infringement search for its own developments, provision of information and advertising, editorial and intermediary services.

Primary business subdivisions

VElNII is a powerful scientific and technical center in the field of railway rolling stock; it has its own laboratory facilities which are capable to carry out research and development works, as well as an automated design engineering system.

The institute has on-site testing facilities for electric locomotives, electric machinery and devices. The following tests are performed: aerodynamics and heat transfer; static, dynamic, strength and vibration. VElNII performs a large number of periodical, type, qualification and research tests.

There is a test center operating at the institute for performance of certification tests accredited with the Federal Railway Transport Certification System (SSFZhT) and with the Russian GOSTR certification system for the right to perform certification tests of a wide range of electrical facilities, both traction and industrial application.

Total staff- 696.

Historical background

The Research and Development Institute of Electric Locomotive Engineering (ElNII) was created in 1958 in pursuance of two Government Resolutions "Of Fifteen-Year Master Railway Electrification Plan for the Period of 1956-1971" (1956) and "Of Actions for Insurance of Manufacture of Main-Line Electric Locomotives for Railway Transports" (1958). On June 25, 1963 the institute received the status of an All-Union Scientific Research Institute. The task of VElNII was to perform research and development works and based on the obtained results to creation innovative types of electric locomotives conforming to the conditions and requirements of operation on railways.

During 50 years of its history specialists of the institute developed more than 50 types of main-line, industrial use and mining electric locomotives and traction units for open-cut mining. Nearly 15 thousand electric locomotives of various designations were manufactured according to documentation of the institute.

During the latest decades the institute has created approximately 70 types of traction engines, including direct and pulse current commutator engines, three-phase squirrel-cage asynchronous engines, thyratron and inductor-type engines with power of 30 to 1200 kW.

Hundreds of types of electric and pneumatic devices were developed for power circuits, protection, regulation and alarm systems, several versions of the mechanical part with various schemes of body-bogie coupling, traction effort transmission from bogie to body and torque transmission from traction motor shaft to wheel set etc.

In the process of creation of new types of electric locomotives scientists and designers of VElNII for the first time in the World practice found solutions providing reliable work of the mechanical and electric equipment at ambient air temperatures of as low as -50°C with high mechanical loads and vibrations, offered and implemented an efficient regeneration braking system for alternating current electric locomotives with commutator traction motor (its usage increases safety of operation and allows to save 8-12% of the electric power used for traction depending on the track profile), created an efficient air cleaning system from water, dust and snow for power cooling equipment as well as many other items. Electric locomotives designed and manufactured by the domestic industry always meet up-to-date scientific and technological level. This is proven by two State Prizes, with which were awarded to scientists of VElNII and spesialists of NEVZ: for creation of VL80T main-line alternating current electric locomotive and OPE1 traction unit for open-cut mining. The high engineering level of design and quality of manufacturing are also proven by the fact that large batches of electric locomotives developed by the institute were delivered abroad at various times: to Finland (110 units, 1973-1984), Poland (50 units, 1977 - 1981), China (100 units, 1987-1990). Specialists of VElNII received approximately 1000 patents and certificates of authorship for their inventions, published approximately 7 thousand scientific studies, including more than 60 monographs. Some 100 of them were published abroad.

Electric locomotives created by VElNII are ultimately adapted to severe operation conditions and are characterized by high reliability.

As per Federal Law of the Russian Federation "Of Science and Scientific and Technical Policies", on the basis of resolution No. 1-2005 of June 9, 2005 of the Commission for State Certification of Scientific Establishments of the Federal Surveillance Service in the Domain of Education and Science ("RosObrNadzor"), the institute was state certified as an All-Russia Scientific Establishment.

VElNII was certified by the Standardization Metrology and Certification Committee ("GosStandart") of Russia as a test center of traction electric rolling stock and electric products; it has considerably expanded the area of certification and acquired the right to perform certification tests of all types of conversion equipment and electronic control devices; was certified with the Rostov Metrology and Standardization Center for the right to check-up measuring devices; the institute received a license from the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation for performance of educational activities in the domain of professional postgraduate education (postgraduate studies) and received a license for publishing activities.

During last few years VElNII has considerably expanded the foreign economic cooperation with Kazakhstan, Uzbek and Ukrainian railways.

General Directors

A.L. Kurochka1958 - 1962
E.A. Smykov1962 - 1964
R. Bondarenko1964 -1966
A. Surovikov1966 - 1969
A. Kovalev 1969 - 1973
A.I. Savenko1973 -1978
V.P. Yanov1978 - 1987
V.G. Scherbakov1987 -1999
L.N. Sorin1999 - 2005
V.G. Naimushin2005 - 2008
Yu.A. Orlov2008 – наст. вр.