4TRAK - Mobile Tracking Systems

The 4Trak Mobile Tracking System provides the real-time tracking of mobile assets and field workers using GPS data from vehicle-mounted devices or mobile handsets. The system includes a web server to display data over an Internet or Intranet, and specialised 4Trak Mobile software for smartphone and tablet devices. The system allows also Voice-over-IP calling between users as a total communications system.

Operation

4Trak displays data on standard Internet, smartphone and tablet browsers.  The system uses ordinary mobile Internet data services to connect to remote devices. By using the best of public Internet technologies in a private operational network, new productivity tools and service options can be offered as they mature in the public environment.

The system is designed for use on the secure side of a company’s computer network firewalls within an Intranet.  This is usually necessary to keep company data fully isolated from any public access.  So while 4Trak can be used over Google Maps or any external mapping data if an open Internet deployment is preferred (and noting the security issue), its distinctive feature is that it has its own layered mapping data.  Further, 4Trak can operate over any private mapping data that might already be used internally by a customer.  The only condition in this regard is that the mapping data is accurately geo-referenced.  For example, this feature may be useful for a large complex mine site where a company already has accurate mapping in general use.

Any user mobile equipment being tracked needs to connect to the 4Trak server via a mobile data service to establish a data connection for reporting GPS location.  If an always–on data service is used like mobile IP, then the devices can be tracked in real-time.  Any loss of mobile service coverage prevents real-time tracking, but any collected data is transmitted once connectivity is re-established.

Benefits

4Trak is designed to improve productivity by increasing situational awareness to all users.  All collected data is logged to create a history of information for improved decision making.

The business benefit of 4Trak is that it increases productivity by allowing better remote management of mobile users and part of a larger safety management system, improves safety in single-person operations by monitoring their location against any safety criteria, with an emergency “man-down” one-button call.

4Trak also can be configured as a total communication system using Voice-over-IP to talk to any user being tracked. This feature allows “see it; say it™” functionality on any web page, smartphone or tablet, and avoids the need for any staff to look up a mobile user’s telephone number.  This reduces wasted time and increase staff productivity.

Other Users

4Trak is in use with many large clients in Australia. They include John Holland Rail across the NSW Country Rail Network and the Australian Rail Track Corporation across the Australian Defined Interstate Rail Network, amongst others.

4Tel Mobile Tracking System product suite includes:

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4TRAK WEB - For Internet and Intranets

4Trak4Trak Web is an Intranet or Internet solution for viewing the location of mobile assets and then managing them via a web interface. 

Field mobile equipment needs to connect to the 4Trak server via a mobile data service to establish a data connection for reporting GPS location.  If the communications service is always-on as typical for a modern mobile internet service, then tracking data can be displayed in real time.  

The 4Trak Web Intranet solution uses the best of public internet technologies in a private operational network, which allows new productivity tools and service options can be offered as they mature on the Internet. This approach also ensures that any original 4Trak purchase cannot become stranded technology as there is always has a public upgrade path.

The business benefit of 4Trak is that it increases productivity by allowing better remote management of mobile users and improves safety in single-person operations by monitoring their location against any safety criteria, with an emergency “man-down” one-button call.

4Trak also can be configured as a total communication system using Voice-over-IP to talk to any user being tracked. This feature allows “see it; say it™” functionality on any web page, smartphone or tablet, and avoids the need for any staff to look up a mobile user’s telephone number.  This reduces wasted time and increase staff productivity.

4TRAK WEB Features:

  • Provides email, text message and computer data alerts or reports against specified events
  • Has ‘man-down” emergency calling display
  • Provides tracking history and data logging
  • Has VoIP touch calling for “see it; say it” calling
  • Has layered geographical views which can be switched on/off
  • Displays locations, telemetry and alarms from staff and vehicles
  • Allows area bookmarks for specific webpage recurring views
  • Uses an ordinary internet browser for the user interface
  • Provides external data interfaces to other systems or back-office reporting

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4TRAK OPERATIONS MOBILE APP - For Smart Phones and Tablets

4TrakOppsMobile Timetable4Trak Operations Mobile App ("4Trak Ops") is a suite of application software clients for smartphones and tablets that allow network-wide 4Trak GPS data to be displayed on a user device. The software also allows emergency alerting and voice calls to trains, vehicles and staff.

The business benefit of 4Trak Ops is that it increases productivity by allowing better situational awareness to mobile users and improves safety of their work by monitoring their location against any safety criteria, with an emergency “man-down” one-button call.

4Trak Ops also can be configured as a total communication system using Voice-over-IP to talk to any user being displayed.  This feature allows “see it; say it™” functionality on any smartphone or tablet, and avoids the need for any mobile staff to look up a tracked user’s telephone number.  This reduces wasted time and increase staff productivity.

4TRAK Operations Mobile App features:

  • Improves situational awareness by viewing all tracked users around the smartphone or tablet
  • Allows emergency and routine one-button calling
  • Automates alarm reporting
  • Allows VoIP touch-screen calling to any displayed user
  • Always-on tracking when connected over the Internet
  • Software is available for modern mobile devices; e.g. iPhone, Android, etc.
  • Uses the 4Trak server as the host processor

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4PIDS - 4Tel Passenger Information Displays

4Tel 4PIDS is a turnkey software solution that processes GPS and track-circuit data* against route timetables to create a real-time information feed for Passenger Information Displays, Public Address and Customer Help Points.

The 4PIDS system collects the real-time position information of any train, tram, coach, bus, ship, ferry, light rail or mobile phone user. This location information is then integrated with timetable/schedule information and applied to a complex predictive algorithm producing an accurate data stream for each passenger information device.

The 4PIDS complete end-user solution features:

  • Passenger Information Displays (Concourse, back office and waiting room)
  • Automated Voice-over-IP verbal announcements to a Public Address (PA) system
  • Customer Help Points
  • Back-end web-portal for refinements to display and PA announcements
  • A live data feed to mobile phone applications
  • Direct inputs from GPS and signaling systems telemetry for real-time location data of services
  • Software to calculate the variance of actual running data to the planned timetable for accurate service information. This includes delay, cancellation and termination information
  • Predictive algorithm for the calculation of accurate estimated arrival and departure times for passenger information devices
  • Live mapping data for geographical and schematic awareness

The service tracking information on 4PIDS is generated from the 4Trak centralised server which gathers position data from GPS receivers and/or track-circuit signaling telemetry*. The 4Trak 4PIDS software then compares that real-time location data with the current timetable/schedule for each respective service to deliver real-time predictions to the various displays and devices.

The 4PIDS system information refresh cycle is configured according to business requirements and real-time data availability. If the source of real-time data is lost (eg. GPS, track-circuit, fixed waypoint detectors), the system will utilise a secondary real-time source if available. If no real-time source is available, the system will automatically fall back to timetabled information for passenger information display. The system also features a back-end web-portal for local staff control of passenger information devices if required.

The 4PIDS solution can be configured to operate on a variety of vendor displays and legacy devices. The software is interoperable using open-systems interfaces for maximum adaptability to our client’s back-office needs.

The 4PIDS is a proven solution for real-time multi-mode transport Passenger Information Displays.

The 4PIDS innovative Passenger Information Display system:

  • Improves the passenger experience
  • Integrates the real-time running information of multiple transport services on a single display
  • Is easily custom-configured to fit the needs and requirements of each transport station
  • Has a full-time 24/7 technical support team
  • Assists in network operations through improved situational awareness
  • Aids station staff with timely information

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4PTW - 4Tel's Permit-To-Work System

ETW Tablet_Landscape_2(Also known as ETW which is a specific application of PTW for our Client John Holland Rail. The project has been customised to their specific needs.)

4PTW is an electronic Permit-To-Work system for managing authorities to support track maintenance activities.  The system includes a mobile application (“app”) for use by protection officers (“PO”), and a central server to integrate the data into the train control environment.

4PTW improves the safety, efficiency and effectiveness of track maintenance activities through the use of mobile app technology and integrated engineering controls.  It provides a complete solution for all maintenance activities in the corridor without reliance on previously required administrative controls, voice communications or hand-written authorities.
4PTW is currently in use across a track network covering 2,500kms in remote and regional Australia.  The design of the system has maintained the SIL (Safety Integrity Level) of the control system that it is integrated into.  This solution can and does work with multiple control systems, this is to meet the complexity of current control centre environments and as a customer needs.

By creating an app based communication system between work gangs and the control centre, 4PTW has been able to eliminate paper based reporting and benefit from collecting the data in a meaningful way for management to better understand work-on-track activities.  This clearer flow of information has multiple benefits, whether that be for managing work gangs, increasing worksite situational awareness to control centres and trains, and/or improvements to the general safety and performance of personnel.  4PTW is a solution for improving workplace safety.

Features possible for specific business needs:

  • Electronic messaging between train control environment and PO mobile app
  • Integration with a centralised vital Interlocking
  • On-board enforcement of track vehicles/work trains

On-board device or mobile app to display:

  • Train locations
  • Train running information
  • Track maintenance information
  • Conditions affecting the network (e.g. speed restriction, failed level crossing)
  • Corridor infrastructure

Worksite Safety
  • Central server application to manage track access
  • Supports cloud, Virtual Machine, or hardware based deployment
  • Electronic message transfer
  • Security codes for authority release
  • Security codes for overlapping authorities
  • Secure communications between field and central server
  • Dynamic mobile app authority display
  • Geographic map view of authority limits, PO location, and associated rail traffic
  • Text message confirmation of authority actions
  • Off-the-shelf smartphone mobile devices (IOS and Android compatible)
  • Detailed logging for both centralised server and mobile app
  • Compatible with private or public communications networks
  • Integration with track maintenance planning systems
  • Control centre visibility of trains and worksites, but not interlocked into the safety system 

Network Safety
  • Integration with train control systems
  • Centralised interlocking of all train and track maintenance authorities
  • Engineering control for authority release
  • Complements Safety Integrity Level (SIL) validated systems and processes
  • Electronic graph display of authority
  • Control centre visibility of safety interlocked train and track maintenance authorities

On-board Safety
  • Enforcement of track maintenance authority limits within a locomotive or track vehicle
  • In vehicle proximity- warnings and alarms when approaching a worksite

Improving Situational Awareness
On-board device or mobile app to display:
  • Train locations
  • Train running information
  • Track maintenance information
  • Conditions affecting the network (e.g. speed restriction, failed level crossing)
  • Corridor infrastructure

 

To watch how 4PTW works, view the ETW promotional video below: (Please keep in mind ETW is the project name for our client John Holland Rail. The system and process are the same but only customised options are applied.)

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