posted on 12th Nov 2020 19:40
Green Cargo is testing digital automatic couplings (DAC) for more efficient rail freight in a unique European collaboration. The DAC equipped wagons will soon leave the maintenance depot in Eskilstuna and arrive in Luleå. That is where Green Cargo will test different automatic coupling options in Swedish winter conditions.
The FR8RAIL project, which forms part of the freight program in Shift2Rail, is now preparing 12 wagons for testing, which have been equipped with three types of DACs developed by four suppliers. The tests are being conducted in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and in Sweden, where the focus is on winter conditions. The project is hoping for cold weather and a lot of snow and wind in Luleå, where the tests will be carried out.
Participants in the winter tests for DACs include Trafikverket (the Swedish Transport Administration), Green Cargo, the CLOSER platform at Lindholmen Science Park and the four DAC suppliers: CAF MiiRA, Dellner, Voith and Wabtec-Faiveley. Additionally, SSAB is supplying tracks and premises and the Swedish national research institute RISE is carrying out the tests. The project is being conducted within the framework for the European railway R&I collaboration Shift2Rail, which is financed by Horizon 2020, the EU’s framework program for research and innovation.
A standard has been developed by the European railway R&I collaboration Shift2Rail for a modular, multifunctional digital automatic coupling, which can subsequently be upgraded. Capacity, punctuality, working environment, efficiency and profitability for rail freight can be significantly improved through digital automatic coupling (DAC) and complementary digital solutions. Several time-intensive and hazardous tasks can be automated using DAC, which also provides secure data communication and energy efficiency. It opens doors to new, modern logistics concepts and scores of digital applications.