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Real-time information applications and energy efficient solutions for rail freight - S2R-CFM-IP5-01-2017
Deadline: Mar 30, 2017  

 Energy Efficiency
 Intelligent Energy
 Urban transport
 Horizon Europe
 Industrial Engineering

Specific challenge: 

Within the challenges highlighted in the IP5 part of the S2R Master Plan, the following specific challenges should be addressed by the proposal in answer to this topic: 

1. Future freight locomotives must reach the maximum possible energy efficiency - alone, in the train consist, or within a fleet – in order to improve the cost-competitiveness of rail freight. Also they need to serve complex logistics concepts. The challenge is to identify and test innovative technologies for further customer benefit in a demonstrator, including freight specific propulsion concepts, energy recuperation and storage systems, clever energy management systems and mission managers. 

2. Hybridization of the legacy shunting fleets should be sought in order to quickly react to the competitive pressure from other modes, by reducing lifecycle cost and defending rail freight’s position as the most environmentally friendly mode of transport. The challenge is to use already existing, reliable and owned shunting fleets as a basis for an environmentally friendly, energy- and cost-efficient second life. The expected study should lay the foundation for a demonstrator. 

3. The realisation of an optimised network management is expected to lead to centralized information about the traffic conditions, available capacity, train composition and infrastructure characteristics. The challenge is to optimize the driving profile of the freight trains in operation and to give advice for the network dispatching system to obtain better line utilisation, based on existing applications and TAF TSI. 

4. In yard management there are still a lot of physical checks and processes relating to single wagon-load transport. For a higher degree of automation the challenge is to design, build and test a novel terminal with Intelligent Video Gate technology to optimize train in- and outbound detection, including automatic identification of train consist and characteristics (length, loading gauge, structural data, etc.). Projects should search for synergies with existing TAF TSI platforms. 

5. Maintenance of bogie components is one of the major operational expenses. The challenge is to reduce maintenance cost and hazard probability associated to the bogie, for bogies of freight wagons existing in IP5, in practical tests. The project must be synchronized and align the output with the overall approach of the Condition Based Maintenance strategy of IP5. 


A common challenge for the innovations that will be developed when addressing the challenges described above, is to foresee an ambitious but also reasonable timeline for the European market uptake to take place. The European Union Agency for Railways (EUAR), which oversees the implementation of the TAF TSI, will be involved as necessary. 


Proposals should address all the following elements, in line with the S2R MAAP: 

The work expected in the work stream 1 concerning future freight locomotives” (TD5.5) should: 

 Analyse and select different state-of-the-art propulsion technologies for testing, such as e.g. hybridization concepts, powerful energy storage systems; 

 Testing of selected technologies, complimentary to the activities started in IP5 

 validate power peak shaving concepts for a complete fleet, using fleet wide real-time information on energy consumption, intelligent auxiliary management and powerful mission managers, (TRL 4). 


The activity is expected to provide recommendations for the selection of components for testing, and results from the testing of components in the loop, on a test bench or in simulation and validation. 

The research in the work stream 2 concerning the “hybridization of shunting legacy fleets” (TD5.4) should include the following items: 

 development of basic guidelines for assessment of the suitability of selected shunting fleets for a second life refit based on technical, economic and ecological analyses; 

 development of a standardized, modular, hybrid concept for suitable legacy shunting fleets for given load cycles and fields of usages incl. lithium-ion technologies; 

 development of technical concepts and design studies for implementation of the modular hybrid concept on a prototype shunting locomotive including technical validation concepts. 


The activity is expected to provide the analysis of the legacy fleet, the specification and simulation of a target design (TRL 4) 

Network Management” will develop methods for improved interaction between network management and yard management including: 

 development of a data exchange platform for inter-modal hubs for connecting rail freight stakeholders, facilitating operation of mixed traffic (passengers and freight); 

 specification of integration layers for real-time yard management and real-time network management applications. Evaluation of the effect that a technological upgrade of one hub, will affect other hubs and nodes in the network; 

 simulation of operational scenarios on freight corridors to increase the average speed improving train dynamics with the aim to optimize time-tabling systems. 


The activity is expected to provide a simulation of real-time network management based on the developed data exchange platform in a test environment. (TRL 5) 

The scope of the work stream 4 “Intelligent Video Gate” (TD5.4) is expected to include the following elements: 

 analysis of the design of the terminal and specification of how the information flow can proceed and be gathered amongst the different stakeholders involved; 

 assessment of IVG technology including necessary developments, integrating different complementary image-based and non-intrusive technologies and sensors, able to gather dynamically relevant data and features from freight train compositions; 

 selection and testing of technologies and definition of services for automatic rolling stock identification and train classification. 


The activity is expected to provide a validated prototype of an intelligent video gate technology designed and ready for integration and in an existing terminal. (TRL 6) 

The scope of work in the work stream 5 consisting in “defining sensors for wagon bogies, for integration in condition-based maintenance” (TD5.3) will be: 

 specification of sensors for wagon bogies, and development of corresponding algorithms, efficient from a computational point of view, to obtain key performance indicators of the evolution of relevant variables which will trigger condition based maintenance (CBM) tasks; 

 Thorough interpretation of sensor data, assigning patterns to specific failures and provision of reliable diagnosis of the state of the bogie, including prediction of the possible next failure of the bogie; 

 investigation of methods for the compression of information and reliable synchronization, taking into account communication channel constraints for providing sensor data in real-time. 


The activity is expected to provide prototype sensors and software algorithms covering the wagon bogie, tested in the framework of the overall approach of Predictive Maintenance in IP5 (TRL 5). 

The scope of the work stream 6 related to “migration plan” should include the: 

 development of technological paths, migration plans and market uptake scenarios for key technologies and solutions, which will be developed in IP5; 

 identification of short-term wins for shippers, customers and operators, building on the available results of the Smart Rail project. 


The activity is expected to provide a compilation of migration plans that describe the ideal roll out of key technologies in the European rail freight market (TRL 3). 

The action that is expected to be funded under this topic will be complementary to the actions that are expected to be funded under the following topics: 

 S2R-OC-IP5-01-2017: Real-time yard management. 

 S2R-CFM-IP1-01-2017: Development of new technological concepts towards the next generation of rolling stock, applied to major subsystems such as Carbody, Running Gear, Brakes, Doors and Modular interiors 


The action that is expected to be funded under this topic will also be complementary to the actions funded within the following topics: 

 S2R-CFM-IP5-01-2015: Development of functional requirements for sustainable and attractive European Rail Freight, 

 S2R-CFM-IP5-02-2015: Start-up activities for Freight Automation 

 S2R-CFM-IP5-03-2015: Freight Propulsion concepts. 


The implementation of this action also requires collaboration with Smart Rail project (‘lighthouse’ project resulting from H2020 call MG2.2-2014)37. 

37 However, as the EC Work Programme 2014-2015 did not contain sufficiently detailed requirements, the provisions on complementary grants in the S2R MGA are not mandatory for the beneficiaries of Smart Rail project , who may accept them on a voluntary basis, subject to their explicit agreement. 

As specified in section 2.3.1 of S2R AWP for 2017, in order to facilitate the contribution to the achievement of S2R objectives, the options regarding 'complementary grants' of the S2R Model Grant Agreement and the provisions therein, including with regard to additional access rights to background and results for the purposes of the complementary grant(s), will be enabled in the corresponding S2R Grant Agreements. 

The S2R JU will only fund one proposal under this topic. 56 


Expected impact: 

The expected impacts, which are expected to be quantified in the answer to the call, are: 

 enhance the environmental friendly performance through high energy efficiency propulsion systems by 10%; 

 increase energy efficiency by recuperation and on-board storage of braking energy; 

 reduce the peak power request by peak shaving; 

 increase the operational efficiency through upcoming propulsion systems both in the main line and marshalling yards 


The foreseen research activities in the work stream ‘hybridization of shunting legacy fleets’ are expected to: 

 reduce the implementation time and enhancing the cost competitiveness for environmentally friendly innovation; 

 improve the ecological footprint and lifecycle cost of Diesel shunters ; 

 increase the flexibility and freight operational efficiency. 


The expected impact of activities resulting from the work stream on ‘network management’ will be to: 

 optimise the decisions and the resulting operational processes in real-time and be able to respond to any scenario including unforeseen incidents e.g. delays of trains, technical failures, new construction requirements; 

 increase the capacity of mixed traffic . 


The work within the work stream Intelligent Video Gate’ is expected to lead to: 

 an optimization of terminal design and operations together with better data exchange, between involved parties along the intermodal transport chain; 

 improvement of reliability, service characteristics and cost competitiveness of intermodal rail transport; 

 a significant reduction of dwell times in terminals; 

 ensuring interoperability with existing rolling stock, therefore avoiding constraints and limitations, minimizing investments and fostering market uptake. 


The work stream defining ‘sensors for wagon bogies’, for integration in condition-based maintenance is expected to deliver: 

 an increased rail freight reliability and efficiency; 

 a significant reduction of freight train derailments through the real-time prevention of bogie failures and condition-monitoring; 

 a reduction of 10% of maintenance operational expenses related to bogie components and increase rail freight business competitiveness. 


The work stream related to the development of ‘migration plan’ should deliver logical steps for the market uptake of the new solutions which could become a guideline for these innovations to happen throughout the European freight sector. 57 


Specific metrics and methods to measure and achieve impacts should be included in the proposals, with the objective to achieve by the end of the S2R Programme the quantitative and qualitative targets defined in the S2R MAAP related to TD5.2, TD5.3, TD5.4 and TD5.5 in line with the relative planning and budget. 

Type of action: Research and Innovation Actions (TRL 4-6) 

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