Railway transport, with high capacity, easy operation systems, and high security, plays an important role in technology development and in the history of human civilization. With the development of technology, railway transport has been constantly upgraded for its capacity, speed, and safety, therefore is attractive to various countries around the world. Railway system not only brings development in local areas, but also shortens the gap between cities and counties.
In the past, most of the railway systems adopted the easier gauge control and signaling systems. In addition, they were less flexible and performed bad at safety. It was not easy to raise the capacity by increasing or reducing the shifts, and speed of trains was also limited. After the introduction of IP-Based intelligent train systems showed, these problems have been improved significantly. Railway systems can be categorized into two large type, “New train market” and “Refurbish market”, both of which have large market scale.
Railway systems are mainly divided into the following types:
- Automatic Train Control; ATC
Automatic train control is the highest control system used to monitor and control the proceeding trains, function of manual takeover that will be initiated when systems fail is also included in ATC, which includes ATP, ATO and ATS.
- Automatic Train operating system; ATO
Automatic train operating system is used to control trains that are pulling into stations. The system makes sure that entire trains will stop on particular platforms by appointing to the certain spots. This operation assumes that ATP system has already confirmed the spots are clear for trains to pull over.
- Automatic Train Protective system; ATP
Automatic Train Protective system is an interlocking protection mechanism, used to prevent collisions by calculating the traveling blocks during trains’ proceeding. The implementation of ATP is to calculate how many traveling blocks are left among the non-traveling blocks with a rail calculation method. When the non-traveling block of two trains are getting closer, ATP system will automatically slow down the train to avoid collisions.
- Communication Based Train Control System; CBTC
CBTC is a rather advanced system. The principle of CBTC is to control trains’ signals based on the structure of protocol. Trains are thus able to communicate with each and to locate positions by making use of the telecommunications between the train and track equipment. With the advantage of real-time communication, the locations of trains can be sent to the control center at once. It is more accurate and more efficient than the traditional train control systems, and can therefore elevate the safety level of trains and allow a more flexible operation.
- Train to Ground; T2G
T2G allows trains to communicate with the equipment set beside the tracks directly and to transmit relevant information to the control center by means of wireless transmission. This kind of communication method is not easy because it is often influenced by surrounding circumstances. However, it is also a crucial part of ATO train protection mechanism. In addition, control center needs T2G signal transmission to send images of the front and the rear of the trains to the control center. The transmission quality and the bandwidth depend on reliable internet systems.
- Track side networking system
The backbone system along the tracks is used to transmit the information of related power equipment between stations, images, and the most important train control signals to the control side. The backbone system will continue to extend along with the construction of the tracks. The quality and the reliability of transmission are also important considerations. To connect equipment and to support various traditional transmission, protocols are also important issues.
- Passenger Information Display System; PIDS
Passenger information display is used to deliver instant traveling information to passengers in stations or on trains. Passengers can thus acquire relevant transfer information when traveling by trains and errors can be reduced, improving customers’ satisfaction rate. In addition, PIDS can benefit the transportation companies by broadcasting commercials or offering entertainment.
- Station building automation/HVAC system
As conscious of energy saving rises, building automation system becomes a rather important application in modern world, and the HVAC system is an important part of it. HVAC system makes people inside the building comfortable by providing good quality of air. Of course, building automation system includes other relevant systems, such as lighting, elevators, escalators, wastewater treatment, ventilation, masking system, fire protection system, etc.
- Automatic Fare collection; AFC)/Ticketing system
Automatic fare collection system aims at selling and recycling tickets and charging by means of connecting a series of equipment via network connection. AFC can reduce considerable manpower waste thus improving efficiency when used in public transportation systems.
- Fire alarm/Safety system
Fire alarm/safety system is an important part of the railway system, especially in trains that are carrying passengers and on platform areas. When outbreak of fire or large amount of smoke is detected, surveillance cameras, lighting system and the broadcast system will be used to guide the members from management office to carry out necessary procedures.
- Platform screen door system
Platform screen door system is an application that aims at preventing commuters from falling onto the railway track, especially when there are great amount of traveler or in rush hours. This system significantly increases the safety of people standing on platforms.
- STATION or On-Board CCTV system
CCTV system is now widely applied among railway systems, mainly used on platforms, by drivers in trains, or for remote monitor. Surveillance systems can help operators or train drivers grasp the situation in the front and the rear cars. They can also know the situations of the concerning crew members by this system. With T2G transmission system, images can be sent to the center immediately to improve safety and efficiency.
- Environmental Monitoring System
Environmental monitoring system is also important to railway system. By collecting environment information, train can run with more safety. For example, excessive wind speed, crosswind, heavy rain or typhoons will affect the safety of a proceeding train. The monitor stations set along the tracks can send information that has collected to the control center, and the center will determine on lowering speed of train or implementing relevant protection measures.