Information published on 16 July 2020 in the UIC electronic newsletter "UIC eNews" Nr 700.

Belgium: Alstom and ProRail to test automated shunting with Lineas locomotive

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Starting in 2021, Alstom and ProRail will test Automatic Train Operations (ATO) using a Lineas shunting locomotive. Lineas is proud to support this first European test of automated shunting which will be a key technology in the future digitized railway system.

Lineas, the largest private rail freight operator in Europe, is supporting ProRail and Alstom to test ATO in shunting activities. ATO has been identified as one of five technologies that will enable rail freight companies to double rail volumes in Europe and thereby help deliver on the EU Green Deal’s target for smart and sustainable mobility.

Geert Pauwels, CEO of Lineas: “Technologies like ATO can increase safety and efficiency for both our train drivers and our customers. This will be key if we want to capture the 30% transport growth on rail instead of on already saturated roads.”

The tests will see a Lineas diesel-hydraulic shunting locomotive being equipped with Alstom’s automatic control technology, intelligent obstacle detection and recognition. The project will first focus on the development of the software for automating tasks such as starting and stopping, coupling of wagons, controlling of traction and brakes, and the handling of emergencies (obstacle detection). Tests will start in 2021 under the supervision of authorized train staff.

(Source: Lineas)