Trains are being operated in a very complex environment, with tons of data (control, diagnosis and passenger information) to be transferred from trains to the wayside and vice versa. The TRACK (Train Applications over an Advanced Communication Network) research team investigated how larger (multimedia) files can reliably be transferred between trains and the ground; in real-time, over a wireless access network, and making maximum use of the available bandwidth.
TRACK investigated the development of a heterogeneous wireless access network (using a mix of technologies such as WiFi, 3G, LTE or WiMAX) for seamless connectivity between train and wayside. Development of the network layer resulted in:
The TRACK project also studied the creation of an application management platform that supports the efficient deployment and management of applications on a railway fleet. Robust versioning and update management were of particular importance. Project results:
The technology developed in this project has been integrated in Televic Rail’s iSync product, which handles applications and data communication between dispatching (ground) and trains. The TRACK technology demonstrator helped Televic secure an important contract win with Eurostar (equipping their trains with screens that can be updated from the ground).