US-Japanese rail collaboration to inspect tracks with AI

A US-Japanese rail collaboration for track inspection using Artificial Intelligence has been established between a California company and a subsidiary of Japan Railways Group (JR Group).

US-Japanese rail collaborationAdvanced Micro Devices Inc. has announced a collaboration with JR Kyushu Railway Company in which the AMD Kria K26 system is being used to upgrade the rail track inspection process. The Artificial Intelligence-based solution developed aims to increase the effectiveness and accuracy of safety inspections for the Japanese high-speed rail operator’s vast network.

JR Kyushu, which manages a network of more than 1,455 miles (2,340 km) of track, previously inspected the rails manually. To improve safety, the company has adopted a technology solution using a rail-mounted computer that uses AMD Kria K26 SOM for fast image processing and advanced artificial intelligence capabilities to identify track anomalies such as unscrewed bolts.

US-Japanese rail collaboration to advance technology

The Kria K26 SOM’s integrated platform includes a custom AMD Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC, DDR memory, and other features designed for durability and adaptability to JR Kyushu’s variable rail system conditions. The implementation of this technology marks a shift from a “walk-around” inspection-based method, with excessive use of manpower, to a more cost-effective and operationally efficient method.

Chetan Khona, Advanced Micro Devices Inc.’s director of industrial, healthcare and scientific markets, pointed out that JR Kyushu’s adoption of SOM Kria illustrates the potential of AI computing’s transformation into automation and optimization of various applications.

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