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Knorr-Bremse and Nexxiot Unveil Innovative Digital Suite for Modern Railways

Knorr-Bremse and Nexxiot Unveil Innovative Digital Suite for Modern Railways
photo: Nexxiot / Public domain/Knorr-Bremse, Nexxiot
08 / 01 / 2024

Knorr-Bremse is focused on driving forward the digitalization of the rail sector. Together with Swiss asset intelligence specialist Nexxiot, based in Zurich, Knorr-Bremse is about to bring a new suite of smart products for connected passenger and freight trains to market. With these solutions, Knorr-Bremse is creating the basis for high-growth digital business models in the areas of connectivity, cloud solutions, and software as a service.

“The rail industry is asking for solutions that will enhance cost efficiency, operational efficiency, and reliability. Digitalization and data management technologies offer enormous opportunities in this respect. With the smart solutions we’re presenting with Nexxiot, we’re creating a new level of connectivity for our braking and other systems that will help our customers improve the productivity, availability, and punctuality of their rail services,” commented Dr. Nicolas Lange, Member of the Executive Board of Knorr-Bremse AG with global responsibility for the Rail division.

“Together, Knorr-Bremse and Nexxiot are shaping the future of the rail industry. Our partnership will help the industry achieve the levels of efficiency and reliability that are already taken for granted in other transportation segments. As a key technology partner, Nexxiot is proud to be accompanying global market leader Knorr-Bremse on this pioneering journey,” said Stefan Kalmund, CEO of Nexxiot AG.

Nexxiot / Public domain

Dr. Maximilian Eichhorn, Vice President of Digital Products at Knorr-Bremse, said, “In less than 18 months, our focused collaboration with Nexxiot has seen the development of market-ready products for outfitting new train fleets and retrofitting existing fleets. Among other things, we’ll be able to leverage the potential of real-time operating data to make precise statements about the condition, performance, and maintenance requirements of our systems. This means more trains on tracks and fewer trains in workshops – a major benefit for our customers.”

Three-pronged digital solution: new hardware plus smart cloud service

To develop the products, the two partners intelligently combined Knorr-Bremse’s systems expertise with Nexxiot’s proven competence in IoT. The innovative workflow, which involves collecting operating data, transferring it to the cloud, and turning it into useful knowledge, is based on three products:

  • Knorr-Bremse Node: The adapter is connected to the control units of systems such as braking, entrance, climate control, and coupling systems, where it gathers data on parameters such as noise, geolocation, temperature, energy consumption, and shocks or vibrations. Each Knorr-Bremse Node then sends the data by Bluetooth to the second new piece of hardware, the Knorr-Bremse Hub.
  • Knorr-Bremse Hub: The Hub aggregates the data streams from the Nodes attached to the various system controllers and sends them to the Nexxiot Cloud via the cellular network (in the future, via the rail vehicle’s own bus). Thus the Knorr-Bremse Hub acts as the gateway between data nodes and the cloud.
  • Cloud Services: Artificial intelligence and algorithms are used to analyze the data streams and turn them into specific insights. Customers can call up information on the location, condition, performance, maintenance requirements, and potentially imminent malfunctions of vehicle systems and components via user-friendly dashboards – so they can more efficiently plan the operation and management of their train fleets.

Source: Knorr-Bremse, Nexxiot