Switch Condition Monitoring
A Safer and More Cost-Effective Future
The condition and safety of the infrastructure are significant for the entire railway industry; therefore, infrastructure owners spend a lot of money on maintenance, and there is a high barrier for taking unnecessary risks in the ways of working. However, digital transformation is inevitable, and will introduce technologies that not only improve safety but also makes infrastructure asset management more cost-efficient.
Switch Condition Monitoring is a service that helps infrastructure owners to implement condition-based maintenance, lower the lifecycle cost of their assets, and increase the availability and reliability of railway infrastructure.
VR FleetCare has developed state-of-the-art technology-based solutions to digitalise infrastructure maintenance together with our technical experts, data scientist, and technology partners.
Our services will help infrastructure owners and maintenance companies to get real-time information about the condition of the assets so that the maintenance and fault repair activities can be directed on-time and on-demand.
Case - Väylä
New Technology to Reduce Disruption to Railway Traffic
Väylä (Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency) and VR FleetCare have launched a joint pilot project focused on collecting and analysing data to obtain real-time information about the condition of switches.
A switch is used a railway junction to steer trains form one track to another. Last year, switch failures caused over 5,000 disruption to traffic in Finland. For testing stage, VR FleetCare has set up seven measurement points at interlockings located at major traffic points around the railway network (in total of some 80 switches).
More detailed data helps us improve the availability of tracks and reduce switch-related disruptions to rail traffic. We aim to receive the first signals of maintenance needs before any deviations are detected in switch operations. In this respect, condition monitoring would help improve the punctuality of trains.
Marko Lehtosaari, Specialist in Railway Maintenance at FTIA
Reducing Maintenance Costs
Switch maintenance account for a considerable share of railway network maintenance costs. Switches have a complex structure and involve many components that affect their functioning. The measurement data can be used to steer maintenance based on the condition of switches, reducing maintenance costs and increasing the lifecycle of switches. For example, the number of operations of individual switches may vary greatly, yet the same maintenance system is used for all of them.