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Real time information applications and energy efficient solutions for rail freight

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - FR8HUB (Real time information applications and energy efficient solutions for rail freight)

Reporting period: 2017-09-01 to 2018-12-31

Although rail freight markets within the EU have been open for a number of years, the modal share of intra-EU rail freight transport has slightly declined in the past decade and the modal share compared to trucks are decreasing. The sector risks failing to fulfil the ambitious objectives that were set in the Transport White Paper in terms of developing rail freight, namely: to almost double the use of rail freight compared to 2005 and to achieve a shift of 30% of road freight over 300 km to modes such as rail or waterborne transport by 2030, and of more than 50% by 2050.

To achieve this, Shift2Rail IP5 has highlighted seven objectives, namely to:
• Increase capacity
• Increase operation reliability
• Railway system life cycle cost reduction
• Increase energy efficiency
• Reducing noise
• Reducing emissions
• Increasing punctuality
FR8HUB is a project part of Shift2Rail IP5 and is the project initiated during 2017. FR8HUB is contributing to all above established objectives and will provide bits and pieces towards achieving these.
The work in FR8HUB is divided into eight different work packages:

WP1 Migration Plan
The first step that has been done towards an overall migration plan for technology development was to identify the key technologies that will have a large impact on the success of implementation.

WP2 Condition based maintenance for wagon bogies
This work package has looked into the most common failures for the bogie type Y25 together with freight operators and has now concentrated the work on the springs. A preliminary version of two low-cost sensors has already been implemented.

WP3 Real time network management and simulation of increasing speed for freight trains
This work package is striving to include the terminals and yard by developing methods for a better interaction between them and the network. The methods are being processed in a digital tool called Railsys that can simulate the traffic on the line in a close to real setup.

The simulation of increasing speed for freight trains has so far conducted a literature study to categorise speed interval for freight trains and to determine which line will best to simulate the effects on.

WP4 Intelligent Video Gate
The work has been concentrated on describing the process inside an intermodal terminal and the information needed from the freight train. The concept intelligent video gate focuses on video and RFID technology as distributors for the information and has developed algorithms for recognising the information on the wagon (type, length, damages, wagon number etc).

WP5 Hybridization of legacy shunters
After the analysis of the available technology, development and construction of the Locomotive BR 294 “HELMS” have been carried out successfully. One prototype locomotive was completed. In order to receive reproducible results, validation testing has been carried out in a test rig. By this testing, validation of the desired functions as well as of the results with respect to energy saving has been proven.

WP6 Freight Loco of the future
The first step has been to create an overview about the possible drive types (e. g. combustion engines, battery, fuel cell) for a last mile application for freight locomotives. The results showed that the short-term and mid-term solution for last mile is the Diesel engine and the long-term solution is the fuel cell drive.

WP7 Management
The first deliverable in the FR8HUB project was the project Quality plan. The document describes procedures and provide guidelines on the day-to-day project management and on the practical aspects of the project development.

WP8 Dissemination
Communication activities in FR8HUB are divided between all project partners. FR8HUB uses the Communication Dissemination Booster provided by the Commission and a stakeholder/end-user mapping was established.
WP1 Migration Plan
The migration plan is going to show ways how to introduce new technologies under market conditions. Thus, the migration plan will be leading the way to successfully implement technologies developed in IP5.

WP2 Condition based maintenance for wagon bogies
By using condition-based maintenance, the strategy for maintenance changes. CBM will progress in four areas: (1) Laboratory tests to acquire data of the failure of the wagon components to be monitored. (2) Specification of sensors selected for the monitoring of physical parameters, which will early inform about most typical failures of wagon components. (3) Synchronization of measured values in position in the vehicle and the route, and timing. (4) Wireless communication systems with low power and low data rate will be used.

WP3 Real time network management and simulation of increasing speed for freight trains
Methods for integrated yard and line planning in timetable planning and operational traffic, which takes available data from yards and terminals (for example real-time identities of in- and outbound trains and wagons) into account and uses train traffic simulation to estimate delays. The goal is to find new automated activities which aim at improving the work for traffic planners and dispatchers.
Faster freight trains who can accelerate and brake faster will be evaluated. The gaps in the timetable between fast passenger and slower freight trains at daytime can be reduced. This means higher capacity without investment into the infrastructure. An economical evaluation will show the limit of speed increase which is set by a higher energy consumption and track and vehicle wear.

WP4 Intelligent Video Gate (IVG)
The implementation of an IVG in the railway section accelerates and improves the data quality of the inbound processes, reduces dwell times and increases punctuality as well as terminal capacity. It will also reduce complaints about damages in the terminal due to high resolution images already at the time the train is arriving. IVG will also significantly improve safety, integrity of the processes and reliability in the processing of relevant data. This especially in the context with the handling of dangerous goods as problems can be detected faster and more reliable.

WP5 Hybridization of legacy shunters
In order to quickly react to competitive pressure and reduce LCC significantly, hybridisation of legacy shunters is paramount. This includes to jointly define a cost-efficient concept for hybridisation including five innovative aspects beyond state-of-the-art: (1) Electro-mechanical drive, (2) Battery technology (3) Modularization (4) Different combinations of testing with selected components (5) Automation focus

WP6 Freight Loco of the future
The ambition is to integrate in the same volume propulsion systems with nominal power > 350kW. Furthermore, a significant energy efficiency increase shall be achieved by the integration of powerful energy storage systems for traction on dual mode locomotives, but also by the integration of smaller and decentralized energy storage systems for feeding the various systems on board locally. Last but not least, it is the ambition to introduce peak power shaving concepts for the locomotive itself, but also for a complete fleet, by means of real time communication and advanced shaving algorithms.
IVG Demonstrator at Innotrans 2018
FR8HUB contribution to IP5 vision