Collaborative condition monitoring for rail vehicle fleets

In the current issue of the trade journal “Der Eisenbahningenieur” (7/2021), PD Dr.-Ing. habil. Lars Schnieder, Matthis Leicht and Dr.-Ing. Ulrich Bock present how the safety and efficiency of rail vehicle fleet operations can be increased by permanently recording condition data.

Railway undertakings must ensure safe and orderly operations in accordance with basic legal requirements. Maintenance plays a major role here. With their maintenance activities, the transport companies pursue the following goals

  • of high-quality operation from the passengers’ point of view,
  • high vehicle availability for ongoing operations,
  • economic efficiency, especially in intermodal and intramodal competition, and
  • an improvement in the safety of operations.

In recent years, various approaches to recording the condition data of rail vehicles have become established. The status data can be recorded both on the infrastructure side and on the vehicle side. What all approaches have in common is that they require an appropriate system architecture for recording and processing the mass data generated. In general, the development of such IoT platforms (IoT – Internet of Things) aims to go beyond condition-based maintenance by analyzing the available data to determine predictions about the future wear and tear behavior of technical components and, if necessary, to draw further conclusions for future planned system improvements.

Thanks to powerful algorithms, digitalization opens up the possibility of predictive maintenance based on comprehensive condition data of the various subsystems of rail vehicles collected during operation. In their article, the authors discuss the criteria for designing a data infrastructure for cross-manufacturer collaborative condition monitoring.

We are happy to provide you with the full article.