7 July | 12 noon
The second session in our Innovation series looks at data: do we generate useful data? Do we use it effectively? Is there too much data? What are the successes of a data-driven approach?
Three speakers will look at different ways in which data is being used to increase efficiency on the rail network. For example, by quickly identifying white space available on a route, by increasing the accuracy of demand forecasting, and by proving the commercial and environmental benefits of an individual freight train (compared to an existing passenger service).
Mike Garratt of MDS Transmodal will outline how his consultancy has used its GB Freight Model to develop NR’s rail freight forecasts and to then use that Model’s internal logic to attach both a user and a non-user value to each individual freight train based on DfT guidelines. Innovative modelling techniques based upon experience across Europe have then been employed to assess the ability of the network to accommodate that forecast growth and the value of any demand that exceeds capacity. This will enable the value of interventions that create additional capacity for otherwise suppressed freight demand to be more realistically quantified and facilitate comparison with the value of existing passenger services.
Martin Gleadow, Head of IT & Technical Innovation 3Squared, will discuss the company’s new Path Planner solution, which it has developed with Rail Operations Group and Freightliner, with funding from RSSB’s Dynamic Train Planning Competition. This allows freight operators to carry out very short-term planning digitally and more effectively. The software identifies and capitalises on the white space available on a route. As the modal shift debate continues this is especially pertinent to operators now as it enables the network to be used to maximum efficiency and reduce the risk of paths going unused, thus increasing overall network efficiency.
A speaker from Fishbone Solutions’ Innovation Team will be talking about leveraging a data-driven approach. This is directed around effective usage of information the industry already collects to promote environmentally conscious planning and infrastructure usage, whilst simultaneously driving economic benefits to the UK rail network.
Three key initiatives centred around promoting rail industry sustainability include:
- Headcode Valuation providing a new approach towards rail travel planning by introducing an environmental and economic value-based prioritisation system
- Predictive Demand Forecasting linked to capability modelling being undertaken for the West Coast South
- Real-Time Sustainability initiatives, focusing on the industry’s usage of renewable energy sources in a cooperative manner.