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InnoTrans 2022

Together with its Members and partners, Europe’s Rail showcased innovative rail solutions of the Shift2Rail Programme and presented the new Joint Undertaking on rail research and innovation launched formally in Paris on 21 February. InnoTrans is the most important global event for the rail sector and the world’s leading trade fair for transport technology, with a focus on rail transport and infrastructure, as well as public transport.

Photos – Day 1

Europe's Rail at InnoTrans 2022

Photos – Day 2

Europe's Rail at InnoTrans - Day 2

Visit of the European Commissioner for Transport

During the event, we showcased more than 20 live and permanent demonstrations on results that are expected to shape the future of rail.

To put all these innovations in the spotlight, we also launched the Catalogue of Solutions, 2022 Edition. The Catalogue brings together the innovative solutions and approaches which Shift2Rail Members and projects’ participants are delivering to transform the rail systems. While the first edition was launched during the World Congress on Railway Research back in 2019 in Japan and in presence of EU Ambassador Patricia Flor, the updated publication provides a much more in-depth timeline for market deployment.




We also had a number of activities throughout the event, one of them being hosting a high-level session titled Digital Automatic Coupling – Transforming Europe’s Rail Freight, organised in collaboration with our Founding Member Deutsche Bahn and the European DAC Delivery Programme. It was an opportunity to discuss the benefits of the DAC solution and how to best prepare for its roll-out, including the societal impact and investment scenarios.

Shift2Rail have always supported initiatives that seek to improve gender balance in the railway sector. Shift2Rail was one of the very first supporters of the Women in Transport initiative led by the European Commission. Back in 2018 Shift2Rail announced the first edition of the ‘Women in Rail Research & Innovation Award’. With this initiative, S2R recognised the work of a woman, or a group of people led by a prominent woman, having demonstrated her professional capacity to move the railway industry forward and breaking obstacles for other women to access. The award was presented during InnoTrans 2018 in presence of the Transport Commissioner at the time. This time we took the Women in Rail Award winners with us to InnoTrans at the Women in Mobility Luncheon. The event was an opportunity to connect female role models to enhance visibility, and consequently foster innovation through diversity. It brought together women leaders who influence the transport and mobility sector through their specialist knowledge and leadership skills.

Read more about Europe’s Rail activities and highlights at InnoTrans 2022 in our social media posts below.

Discover our Innovations

Priority Area 1 – European Rail Traffic Management and Digital Enablers

  • TMS connected with crew management system – An interactive tool showcasing the interaction of the Crew Management System with the Traffic Management System (TMS). This particular scenario allows to reschedule a train departure due to a late arrival of a train driver and shows the implications on Traffic Management.

Priority Area 2 – Digital & Automated up to Autonomous Train Operations

  • Automated train operation – Automatic and reliable obstacle detection and driverless operation control are key solutions enabling driverless ATO over ETCS. The Obstacle detection system thanks to a set of cameras and sensors collects data for reliable evaluation of the spatial environment around the train. Besides that, a track map with train localisation and processing evaluation unit predicts train location in relation to an obstacle. The Driverless Execution Module then decides the train’s reaction, like activating a horn and braking.

Priority Area 3 – Sustainable and Digital Assets

  • Lightweight single axle running gear frame – This mock-up shows the development of a carbon fibre single axle running gear frame that achieves a 50% reduction in weight while maintaining the performance of current steel structures. The project has been divided into four main stages: design and analysis process including research on validation methods and state of the art, sub-component level testing, prototype manufacturing and full-scale testing (bench and track). The prototype of this mock-up can be seen at the Talgo booth.
  • Conventional brake – The electromechanical (EM) brake is based on a technology that uses electricity to generate and transmit both braking signal and braking energy. Thanks to improved dynamics, the EM braking system’s faster response and release times also shorten braking distances and increase track capacity, while the built-in “smart diagnostics” function promises higher vehicle availability.
  • Metallic door leaves – New concept design of metallic door leaves based on metallic architecture introducing plastic/composite parts, innovative filling materials and sealing solutions for thermal insulation, acoustic attenuation, and weight optimisation.
  • Composite door leaves –  New door leaves designed for thermal insulation, weight reduction and cost by selecting the best composite materials, manufacturing process and architecture.
  • Ultralight seats – Hyper flexible and intelligent new ultra-lightweight seat system that has no specific “drive” direction and can be arranged and fitted in a dense and rapid way. Using flexible textile materials that can react to various ergonomic states and offer outstanding comfort for the reduced material construction.
  • Modular interiors panels – The new modular interiors panels make railway transport more attractive to passengers and more flexible to operators by reducing the cost of an interior redesign and increasing the possibilities to evolve fully or partially train interiors/driver cabin during the operating life.
  • Integrated Asset Management System and Energy Metering – The virtual demonstrator showcases the large possibilities and benefit of digital asset management and energy metering solutions in the context of railway. Our expert will help you to navigate into our virtual environment and explain the various applications of the developed solutions.
  • Telemetry service over new IEC 61375-2 – This innovation showcases railway electronics which handle train-to-ground communications based on IEC61375-2-6 international standard. It allows the operator to handle telemetry coming from fleets from different integrators with the same interface.
  • User-centric design of CBM dashboards – This demo will show how the condition based maintenance (CBM) strategy has been implemented and is helping to improve maintenance and reduce life cycle costs and work with more efficiency. This CBM, based on real data monitored from the fleet will trigger maintenance actions at the right moment, reducing corrective maintenance, improving the better management of stocks/spares and consumables. The CBM strategy and triggering events are agreed and shared among the whole loop, and it is finally based in a set of dashboards regarding fleet status and assets status and KPIs that will trigger planned maintenance actions better adapting them to the operational plan.
  • Exoskeleton for back assistance – The exoskeleton is able to assist in multiple different tasks and operations by detecting the user activity in real-time and helping workers reduce the experienced load. The device is usable in unstructured working environments and with unstructured methodologies.
  • Smart material (self-sensing cementitious geocomposites) – These new innovative materials, such as cementitious matrix with piezoelectric capabilities will enable the full integration of measurement and monitoring components into structural components in various railways application.
  • Auralisation and visualisation of train noise – This demo enables the inclusion of human perception in the assessment of different railway noise scenarios in a virtual environment. The prototype developed within the S2R projects is used to demonstrate trains passing by under different conditions with and without various noise mitigation measures.

Priority Area 4 – Competitive Digital Green Rail Freight

  • Digital automatic coupler – Digital Automatic Coupling (DAC) is an innovative component to automatically couple and decouple the rolling stock in a freight train both physically (the mechanical connection and the air line for braking) as well as digitally (electrical power and data connection). DAC is key to enable the needed increase in efficiency and transparency of rail freight.
  • Manual coupler – Showcase of a manual freight coupler. To see the future of the coupling of freight trains, have a look at the Digital Automatic Coupler behind the wall.
  • A unique language tool to boost cross-border rail traffic – This innovative tool allows to mitigate language barriers in the railway field. Thanks to the solution, the driver is able to exchange necessary standard information in written or as voice messages with the traffic controller for a safe run of her/his train and for a good information of the traffic controller. The tool fluidifies border crossings and enhances network capacity, safety and competitiveness.

Priority Area 5 – Smart Solutions for Low Density Traffic Lines 

  • Travel companion – The travel companion offers travellers the possibility of a seamless multimodal door-to-door journey across Europe. It paves the way for our work towards the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) concept, integrating mobility services into a single intuitive mobile app, increasing the attractiveness of more sustainable modes of transport.
  • MaaS pilots – This demonstration summarises the preliminary results of the Shift2Rail Mobility as a Service (MaaS) pilots.
  • Interoperability framework – This solution facilitates multimodal travel in a highly diverse environment and with many transport modes. It helps provide seamless access to all transport data and services in a multimodal and distributed environment, resulting in global services and data marketplace, liberated from technological barriers and where different systems can interoperate regardless of data formats and communication protocols.

Exploratory Research

  • Shift2Rail impact model mock-up – This innovation displays the functionality of the KPI model, the customer experience model and the mode choice model interactively. The KPI model showcases the achievement of the Shift2Rail objectives (improved services for users and customer quality, reduced system costs, simplified business process and enhanced interoperability).