On 25 June 2015, 4Tel successfully delivered Electronic Authorities (EA) into train control operation. This technology provides the delivery of automated movement authorities across 2,200km of track for its client John Holland Rail which manages the NSW Country Regional Network.
Electronic Authorities is the next generation of train control as implemented in the Train Management and Control System (TMACS). It uses screen-based forms and data validation to automate the creation of safety-checked movement authorities. These authorities are then transmitted to the existing locomotive In-cab Communications Equipment (ICE) for display. TMACS then monitors the GPS location of trains in real-time against their issued authorities.
The addition of the TMACS Electronic Authorities enhancement and integration with ICE has combined to provide a material improvement in safe operation compared to existing train order systems.
Derel Wust, Managing Director of 4Tel, is delighted that the company was able to “deliver such a significant technology upgrade to regional rail operations.
“Electronic Authorities is a technology that is well overdue and it is a pleasure to see an Australian designed and developed safety-certified product in service, on time and within budget with John Holland Rail”.
“We have been able to deliver TMACS Electronic Authority software upgrades to hundreds of locomotives without any direct cost to above-rail operators. Further, the software upgrade is down-loaded automatically to an ICE radio without the attendance of a technician”.
Graham Hjort, General Manager of Control Systems at 4Tel, who has been instrumental in the development of the Electronic Authority application, said that “the feedback from industry has been overwhelmingly positive”.
This new approach to train order working across the Country Regional Network has generated significant interest from railways within Australia and around the world. Graham Hjort will be speaking about Electronic Authorities at the 5th Annual Modern Railways Conference in Nusa Dua, Bali, 4th August 2015. Derel Wust will also be discussing Electronic Authorities at the Telecommunications & Train Control Conference in Sydney 18th Aug 15.
The improvement in service delivery through simplifying and automating routine processes is fundamental for minimising the potential of human error in this or any other safe working system. 4Tel is developing and delivering world-competitive Australian-made technology for the challenging remote and regional rail environments.