Safety and monitoring of east-west transportation systems

Development of a system that monitors cargo flow and
guarantees safety in transcontinental corridors especially
transportation of dangerous materials and standard cargo

Socio-economic processes in European and Asiatic countries lead to the intensive growth of trade exchange. Industry in Western Europe needs on the one hand the huge market of raw materials located mostly in Asiatic countries and on the other the outlet market for produced goods. Another strategy involves the localisation of production near the raw materials market and the transportation of ready products. Each of these strategies implies efficiently working transport, especially rail, the environmentally friendly character of which should be particularly underlined. Such transport is especially effective in cargo mass transportation over long distances. On account of the above-mentioned advantages of rail transport, West-East European transportation corridors have been laid out along which the transport of raw and ready materials will be concentrated as a part of trade exchange between Western Europe and Asia. According to recent forecasts it has been estimated that by the year 2005 the amount of cargo transported in such a way will have considerably increased. The difference in track gauge between Asia (1524 mm) and Europe (1435 mm) poses a problem which limits East-West transport. Such problems were dealt with in the already finished EUREKA E! 1679 TRANSCELOG project concerning the development of a logistic centre where railways systems with different tracks gauges meet. TRANSCELOG focuses on facilitating the cargo traffic in the West-East transport corridors connecting Europe with Asia through transcontinental bridges. The feasibility study carried out within TRANSCELOG project pointed out the advisability of the location of a logistic centre at the point of different track gauges junction as a special point infrastructure. The question of cargo safety and monitoring during transportation and a logistic centre service become extremely important in order to obtain the appropriate quality and efficiency of transportation systems between Europe and Asia. Safety and monitoring systems are significant elements of rail transport management aiming at fulfilling customer needs and offering more favourable conditions than other means of transport (by road or sea). The main aims of the TRANSCELOG-SAFETY project are: - to create an effective and reliable telematic system for rail transport monitoring, support and management along the main pan-European West-East corridors - to enable fast reaction to indications of alarms and irregularities - to reduce unit loss during a journey The Safety and Monitoring System covers two communication solutions: 1. INMARSAT D+ (based on GEO satellites), 2. GLOBALSTAR/GSM (based on LEO satellites and cellular radiocommunication). The application of these two solutions will guarantee good coverage, economic effectiveness, high reliability and possibility of flexible re-routing. As far as is possible, the system will be based on standardised information transfer procedures, protocols, data elements, message design rules and similar features to ensure the usage of terrestrial telecommunication infrastructure. The project will be divided into six work packages (WP): WP 1: Investigation of possible safety concepts Trains and cargo wagons monitoring supplies the knowledge of the actual status of a train. External database stores permanent information about transportation. Reaction to unexpected events is possible thanks to the combination of these two sets of information. Initial assumptions resulting from the requirements of a logistic centre at the point of track gauge change. WP 2: Study of a reliable power supply of the communication link and monitoring sensors. Design of the sleep modes of monitoring systems. In WP 2 special attention will be paid to the important question of a reliable power supply of a communication link and of monitoring sensors. The sleep modes of the monitoring system also have to be designed. WP 3: Adaptation of the satellite communication system INMARSAT D+ together with the integrated GPS system. In WP 3 the available satellite communication system INMARSAT D+, combined with an integrated GPS system, will be adapted to the railway environment and extended to an additional vehicle-to-vehicle communication link as a separate feature. The antenna design will be adapted to a vehicle situation, especially regarding the mounting position of wagons and a locomotive. WP 4: Adaptation of the satellite communication system GLOBALSTAR together with GSM and GPS system The satellite radiocommunication system GLOBALSTAR together with GSM, GPS and data terminal will be integrated with one mobile unit. The logic of when to switch between the two networks will be operationally cost driven. Primary communications with the terminal will be via GSM because of its lower cost. If the mobile unit cannot be reached or if the signal is poor then communications will be switched to the more costly satellite system. It is possible that the availability of off-the-shelf equipment will dictate switching algorithms for the hardware. WP 5: Demonstration and testing of a train running at a selected relation with the application of the information gathered by satellite communication. In WP 5 a test and demonstration will be exercised on a train, running at a selected relation. For this purpose the information, gathered by satellite communication, will be received and assembled at a base station (a monitoring station). WP 6: Preparation of the prototype of Monitoring Station on the basis of GSM, GLOBALSTAR and INMARSAT D+ with integrated database, and user access via the Internet. The basic task of the Monitoring Station will be to collect data and create a database containing information about consignments, routes of transported goods and their state, as well as threats, irregularities and damages, and to inform automatically authorised services in accordance with their competencies. In order to afford possibilities for a full review of the situation connected with hazardous goods transport, the Monitoring Station should be capable of collecting data from different sources, verify, protect and aggregate, as well as archive them and provide access for users. Ensuring appropriate technical parameters (e.g. completeness, accuracy, etc.) requires constant control and verification of the quality of collected data. It will also be necessary to protect data in a proper way, both against their falsification, damage or loss, and against access of unauthorised persons. According to general conception this Monitoring Station will integrate and accept different technical solutions for mobile communications. The adaptation of the Monitoring Station in a logistic centre, its incorporation into the centre management system. Keywords: transport, safety, monitoring.
Project ID: 
2 635
Start date: 
Project Duration: 
Project costs: 
900 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Market Area: 

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.