VOSSLOH: A vision for intelligent railway infrastructure will be presented by Vossloh at InnoTrans 2018 under the slogan ‘The Smart Rail Track’. Innovations and smart technologies will be grouped into five ‘themed worlds’, focusing on key topics such as track availability, noise and carbon emissions and life-cycle costs. Novel materials and designs on show will include an environmentally-friendly sleeper, the extremely hard CogX steel grade for turnout crossing applications (right) and the Skl 15 HF rail fastening optimised for busy high speed lines. Vossloh will also be presenting its vibration-reducing DFF 336 Crossover rail fastening for rehabilitating existing track. These fastenings feature an environmentally-friendly premium coating to increase the life of steel components, which uses a zinc-aluminum-lamella combination without heavy metals.

Vossloh is pursuing the use of sensors and IoT technologies for the comprehensive acquisition of track condition information, in stationary, mobile or continuous applications. The company’s latest IoT-enabled sensors do not merely collect raw data for analysis, but incorporate integrated microprocessors that can perform some pre-processing of the data in real time. Using its Easyswitch MIM-H point machine as an example, Vossloh will be demonstrating the concept of ‘digital twins’, creating virtual replicas of physical components or systems to investigate performance and functionality. This digital approach will also feed into future research and product development. Digitisation features in the company’s Smart Rail Maintenance app, which enables customers to decide their maintenance budget and work scheduling at the touch of a button, with a particular focus on the elimination of rail surface defects. To support differentiated rail maintenance, Vossloh is planning to equip its rail treatment machines with state-of-the-art sensor technology, including the new Multi Purpose Milling machine.