Trends in the Development of Rail Systems

Challenging trends from an automation and control perspective

Software-based Control Systems


Software-based control systems are today’s standard in long-distance/heavy rail traffic.  In light rail traffic driver assistance systems are being implemented and will gain in importance. Some Metro systems even use driverless trains today. The requirements for automation and safety technology increase with a growing level of automation and bring about challenges of its own when it comes to certification.

Standardizing the Integration of Subsystems

Rail operators expect standardization and extensive monitoring of subsystems to be able to plan their maintenance efforts efficiently and precisely. 
At the same time vehicle systems need to be flexible in their usability. This requires a closer networking of subsystems and the acquisition, preprocessing and storage of maintenance relevant working data. After that all data still has to be transferred to the operator’s land based maintenance systems. Standardizing communication interfaces for the subsystem integration is one answer to those demanding questions.

Using Synergies with other Industries

Shorter innovation cycles and growing requirements of operators lead to an adoption of system development concepts from different technology sectors. This includes platform concepts out of the aerospace industry to simulation systems used in industrial automation.
Calling upon concepts well established in those sectors open up new possibilities for the further acceleration of developement cycles and the minimization of risks.




Integration of Subsystems:

  • Subsystem integration into the control system
  • Validation of the entire system

Safety Engineering:

  • Evidence of security on a functional level

Test Engineering:

  • Modelling and simulation of system behavior
  • Definition of test cases
  • Development of test benches for automation and control technology


  • PROFINET, Sibas PN, PN PC/104 Karte
  • MatLab, SIMIT
  • High-availability, Redundancy
  • Fail-safe technology
  • Embedded Controller, SoftPLC
  • Interval 0
  • .NET, ANSI C, C++, SCL
  • UML