Network Rail, a company that operates the railway network in the UK, will be developing a new traffic management system for the entire rail network across the country.
The new automated system will be able to control large parts of the network from a number of control points, allowing for better capability and performance across the entire network. The system will include real-time planning, resolution of conflicts, and the reprogramming of areas of control, all through a single operational information system.
The network’s new traffic management system will consolidate around 800 signal boxes into 14 modern rail operating centres, and will be lowering the costs of maintenance by GBP250m per year, as well as claiming to offer an accurate and timely service across the UK.
The new traffic management project is being designed by Hitachi Rail Europe, Signalling Solutions, and Thales UK, and should be rolled out in 2014. The edsign prototype is also likely to be in place by 2013.
Robin Gisby, the managing director of network operations, Network Rail, said, ‘As the number of people and businesses relying on rail continues to grow, it is vital we have the technology to make the best use of Britain’s rail infrastructure. Working with our suppliers, our focus is on developing a system which meets the needs of Network Rail, our customers and passengers, helping deliver a leaner, more efficient and reliable railway.’
The project will also finalise and train a working group of signallers and other operating staff to adapt to the new design.