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ÖBB and Siemens Mobility have launched a digital blocking technology in Austria

ÖBB and Siemens Mobility have launched a digital blocking technology in Austria
photo:ÖBB train
08 / 12 / 2020

Siemens Mobility, in cooperation with ÖBB-Infrastruktur, has launched the first hardware-independent cloud blocking, which ensures the safe operation of signaling applications. This distributed intelligent safe system (DS3) was put into operation at the Austrian railway station of Achau.

The DS3 is the first system of its kind in the world. The functionality and operation of signaling applications is ensured on a standardized hardware, while this platform can be used on commercial hardware for applications and interfaces of railway safety technology. The DS3 can also form the basis, for example, for digital blocking or for a radio block center in ETCS.

This technology brings a number of new possibilities. For example, it enables intelligent signal control. This makes it possible to anticipate faults and plan predictive maintenance which will refine rail transport as such. DS3 has a much lower life cycle cost compared to other technologies.

Infrastructure managers will be able to integrate existing systems and equipment when switching to DS3 technology. This easy switch is made possible by the cloud that the DS3 has at its disposal. The new technology platform meets the highest railway safety standards. It also brings the possibility of greater cost efficiency as well as maintenance flexibility. It also offers space and energy savings compared to current systems.

"We are digitizing ÖBB's infrastructure. Digital blocking is part of our comprehensive digitization strategy. This and many other projects make it possible to increase the capacity of our infrastructure while improving safety, accuracy and cost-effectiveness,” said Johann Pluy, Member of the Board of Management of ÖBB-Infrastruktur AG.

Two years ago, ÖBB and Siemens began testing this system. The tests were successful and after approval the system was put into operation at the Austrian station of Achau. The DS3 system is another step to modernize and digitize railways.