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Author Topic: Network Rail launch new rail corridor inspection system  (Read 2129 times)
grahame
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« on: August 18, 2020, 10:36:46 am »

From Network Rail Media Centre

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World leading imagery survey set to improve passenger journeys

This summer a new innovative way of inspecting the railway using high-quality imagery has begun across west London, the Thames Valley, the west and south west as part of plans to reduce delays for passengers and improve safety for staff

Network Rail has teamed up with Fugro, a leading Geo-data specialist, following their success on the Wales route in 2019, who will capture high quality images of thousands of track miles to millimetre accuracy for analysis.

The trial is being funded with a £394,000 grant from the Department for Transport through the First of a Kind 2020 (FOAK2020) rail industry innovation programme, which is managed by Innovate UK (United Kingdom).

The advanced imagery measures absolute track position, track geometry and the wider rail corridor and will enable any faults on the railway to be detected sooner and before they potentially lead to delays for passengers.

It will also improve safety as it will reduce the amount of time railway engineers need to spend on the track.

The imagery survey, known as a Rail Infrastructure Alignment Acquisition (RILA), will capture 97% of Network Rail’s Western route, which runs from Paddington to Penzance and to the Welsh border, providing an almost complete view of the network to levels of accuracy that have never been seen before.
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bobm
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« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2020, 11:27:14 am »

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The imagery survey, known as a Rail Infrastructure Alignment Acquisition (RILA), will capture 97% of Network Rail’s Western route, which runs from Paddington to Penzance and to the Welsh border, providing an almost complete view of the network to levels of accuracy that have never been seen before.

I wonder which 3% they can't cover?
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PhilWakely
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« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2020, 11:54:55 am »

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The imagery survey, known as a Rail Infrastructure Alignment Acquisition (RILA), will capture 97% of Network Rail’s Western route, which runs from Paddington to Penzance and to the Welsh border, providing an almost complete view of the network to levels of accuracy that have never been seen before.

I wonder which 3% they can't cover?

Turnback sidings - such as that at Exmouth Junction for the Barneys ?
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Reginald25
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« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2020, 12:10:45 pm »



I wonder which 3% they can't cover?
Presumably tunnels such as Box and the Severn won't be covered?
« Last Edit: August 19, 2020, 09:02:27 am by Reginald25 » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2020, 02:24:01 pm »

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The imagery survey, known as a Rail Infrastructure Alignment Acquisition (RILA), will capture 97% of Network Rail’s Western route, which runs from Paddington to Penzance and to the Welsh border, providing an almost complete view of the network to levels of accuracy that have never been seen before.

I wonder which 3% they can't cover?

Turnback sidings - such as that at Exmouth Junction for the Barneys ?

And probably bay and some loop platforms certain branch lines.

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« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2020, 03:36:36 pm »

I don't see why they wouldn't be able to cover loops and branches, but the sections of track within roofed stations will presumably be obscured.

This scheme sounds like a good idea. And not often you get something on the railways for a mere six figures!
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« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2020, 03:53:17 pm »

If you look at Fugro's description, it's clear that (despite NR» (Network Rail - home page)'s publcity, and support from the industry internationally) this is a commercial product, albeit a service rather than a box that's sold. Being Fugro, it's based on GPS and INS to provide the absolute position of the instruments.

That suggests some constraints, though Fugro don't mention them. If its INS can only hold precise reference for a limited time, then long tunnels might be a problem. Also, the laser scanners (LIDAR) may not be 100% safe with people close by, and also be foribidden in certain locations due to other hazards.
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stuving
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« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2021, 05:55:36 pm »

People are still worrying away at this problem, trying to make new boxes you can fit to any train to pick up track defects. Here's another one - from New Civil Engineer:
Quote
Track tech trialled to tackle derailments
23 Sep, 2021   By Rob Horgan   

Train derailments and delays on the rail network could be cut, if a trial of track fault detection system goes well.

A data gathering system is being trialled which could make the UK (United Kingdom)’s rail network safer, reducing costs and delays, by identifying derailment-causing track geometry faults sooner.

After a successful feasibility study as part of Project ‘Automated Rail Geospatial Observation System’, Thales was awarded £500,000 from the Geospatial Commission via Innovate UK to trial equipment intended to detect and locate potential track faults.

Thales technical delivery for the project Guilherme Beirao said: “This is an opportunity to demonstrate an innovative use of technology with the aim of making our rail network safer and more efficient. That would be a big win for everyone involved in railways; Network Rail, the TOCs (Train Operating Company) and passengers.”

The system uses Thales’s Robust Train Positioning System, originally designed to support train operations. RTPS takes data from a number of varied train-borne sensors and track map data, using an algorithm to combine this data to pinpoint its position on the network.

Next month the system will be fitted to an in-service GWR (Great Western Railway) Class 150 cab and over the next five months data from RTPS, along with pitch, yaw and roll measurements from the sensors, will be transmitted to Thales’s data centre. There, it will be analysed, and assessment algorithms developed along with warning thresholds, to alert operators to track geometry faults.

Thales is working with York-based rail technology pioneer, Incremental, which is developing a user interface and threshold definition for the system, allowing Network Rail to define baselines and adjust warning threshold levels. This will also allow data collected from the system to be directly presented to track maintenance engineers and alert them of any abnormalities or developing faults.

That will, it says, be funded by the Geospatial Commission. What? You mean you didn't know we had one of those? It's been lurking in the Cabinet Office (or possibly the office cabinet) since 2018, and doing - well, commissioning geospatial stuff, apparently.
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CyclingSid
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« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2021, 09:25:16 am »

The Geospatial Commission is supposed to "co-ordinate" spatial data suppliers; Ordnance Survey, Geological Survey, Hydrographic Office, etc to enable optimum use and sharing of spatial (mapping) data for planning and development etc.

As a mapping data user I tend to get regular missives from one or other of these.
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