Vossloh AG has taken over the RailWatch’s monitoring system effective September 1, 2023. In addition, all employees will be integrated into the Vossloh Group, which will thus significantly expand its competencies in the areas of sensor technology, computer vision, and cloud computing. In addition to further developing the newly integrated monitoring systems, the former RailWatch team will also work on other digital group projects across all business units.
The technology developed by RailWatch uses optical and acoustic sensors to identify the technical condition of freight and passenger cars, multiple units, and locomotives as they pass by.
The measuring stations are equipped with high-resolution cameras and self-developed LED technology for optimal and glare-free illumination. The data they record includes information on wheel damage, brake blocks, and train and car numbers. A supplementary measuring system, which is installed in the track, enables the collection of further data, including various parameters of the wheel profile, weight information and the distribution of axle loads. The collected information from the overall system is processed in the cloud using artificial intelligence.
After extensive quality assurance, the data is made available to customers in processed form via a web portal. With a 98 percent detection accuracy, RailWatch’s monitoring system is one of the best AI image processing technologies in the railroad sector, Vossloh says.
The measuring stations are located at the most important rail freight corridors in Germany as well as at industrial and port entrances. In addition to network operators, industrial companies and ports, rail transport companies and freight car owners in particular benefit from the information generated. Wear and damage are detected at an early stage, and maintenance measures can be planned and implemented with pinpoint accuracy.
Vossloh “will continue to develop the existing technology and creating considerable additional benefits for our customers. The topic of condition-based and predictive maintenance is of crucial importance when it comes to creating the prerequisites for an increased shift of traffic to rail and thus for more sustainable mobility,” Oliver Schuster, the CEO of Vossloh AG said.