Advanced Traffic Management And Control Systems

IP Coordinator: Claudio Monti - ANSALDO


Total Project Value:
€ 38 885 434,82
to be confirmed
S2R (Of H2020) co-funding:
€ 17 281 436,44
Bettina Doetsch


The project aims to continue the research and development of key technologies to foster innovations in the field of railway signalling, telecommunication, testing methodologies and Cyber Security, as part of a longer term Shift2Rail IP2 strategy towards a flexible, real-time, intelligent traffic control management and decision support system. X2Rail-3 will also explore Virtual Coupling, an innovative concept capable of operating trains much closer to one another (inside their absolute or relative braking distance) and dynamically modifying their own composition on the move.

The actions to be undertaken in the scope of X2Rail-3 are related to the following specific objectives:

  • To improve line capacity and to achieve a significant reduction of the use of traditional train detection systems by means of the introduction of the Moving Block together with train positioning;
  • To overcome the limitations of the existing communication system by adapting radio communication systems which establish the backbone for the next generation advanced rail automation systems;
  • To ensure security among all connected signalling and control systems by developing new cyber security systems dedicated to railways;
  • To analyse new signalling concepts (Virtual Coupling) that potentially would be able to improve line capacity, reduce LCC and enhance system reliability.
  • To improve standardization and integration of the testing methodologies reducing time to market and improving effectiveness in the introduction of new signalling and supervision systems;
  • To ensure the evolution and backward compatibility of ERTMS/ETCS technologies, notwithstanding of the required functional enrichment of the future signalling and control systems.

Project Structure

WP1 – Project Management

WP2 – Technical Coordination and System Coherence

The objective of this WP is to coordinate the nine technical work packages (WP3, WP4, WP5, WP6, WP7, WP8, WP9, WP10) and the dissemination work package (WP11) to create a single project that addresses the whole subject of research and innovations in X2Rail-3 in coherence with the ongoing, future and concurrent S2R IP2 research and development activities. WP2 will facilitate and foster synergies between the different technical work packages towards S2R objectives. Continuing the activities of WP2 of X2Rail-1 and WP2 of X2Rail-2 that are already acting together, this WP will enable seamless and effective technical coordination and system integration, by providing the leaders of all work packages with a platform for coherence checks and interface management.

WP3 – Adaptable Communication System for all Railways

The objectives of this work package are to cover the definition, development and test of prototypes and demonstrators for the adaptable communication system in response to ETCS and CBTC system requirements, cover operational voice services as well as supporting enhancements of the signalling system foreseen by other TDs and other railway communication needs (critical video, critical data). During the start-up activities for TD2.1, the communication requirements were analysed, collected and documented, the definition and specification of the adaptable communication system was done, and the prototype development activities were started.

The second phase of TD2.1 work to be carried out in the projects, foresees the finalisation of the prototype development and the testing and integration of prototypes into demonstrators, with the aim to validate the concepts and demonstrate the capabilities of the adaptable communication system for different rail market segments.

WP4 – Moving Block

The overall objective of the Moving Block Technical Demonstrator is to continue the work of defining a high capacity, low cost, high reliability signalling system, based on Moving Block principles, which is applicable across all railway market segments. High Capacity is based on the use of Moving Block principles, which permits decoupling of the infrastructure from train performance parameters. Low Cost is achieved by the reduction in the use of trackside train detection and line-side signals. High Reliability is achieved as a consequence of the reduction in trackside equipment associated with trackside train detection and line-side signals.

Within this Work Package, the objectives are as follows:

  1. To define the approach required for the testing of a Moving Block Signalling System
  2. To develop the deliverables from X2Rail-1 which define the Specifications for a Moving Block Signalling System.
  3. To provide Demonstrations of Moving Block Signalling Systems
  4. To investigate alternative future architectures for Moving Block Signalling Systems

WP 5 – Zero On-site Testing

Due to the complexity of signalling systems and the differences between sites, a large amount of tests must be carried out on-site. On-site tests take about 5 to 10 times the effort compared to similar tests done in the lab. Reduction of on-site tests for signalling and telecom systems is hence a reasonable approach to reducing testing costs. Today’s procedures of verification & validation testing differ all around Europe. Overcoming these differences by standardizing the procedures and test scopes will improve the interoperability and reduce the time to market.

The objectives of this work package are:
  • Integration of the new functionalities from X2Rail-1 and X2Rail-2, next generation of communication, ATO, moving block, satellite positioning, train integrity, Traffic Management Integration Layer, Smart Wayside Object Controller and cyber security, to complete the general test architecture.
  • Definition of a generic communication model between the different components of the test environment(s) defined in X2Rail-1.
  • Development and validation of standardized interfaces between the products from the test environments of different suppliers and operators and between the test environments and the subsystems under test.
  • Specification of simulators to support automated testing in the lab and to remove the current technical limitations identified in X2Rail-1 and therefore to move more tests from site to lab.
  • Develop and validate the test environment(s) and needed simulators.

WP 6/WP7 – Virtually Coupled Train Sets (VCTS) – Concept and Safety Analysis & business case.

This activity addresses the increment of network capacity, beyond the limitation of the current signalling approach for train and units separation. Increased capacity is today needed for many networks in Europe. Building new lines or adding tracks to existing lines is a slow and expensive process. Furthermore, decoupling, shunting and coupling is a key feature of the traditional railway system. Virtual Coupling can help to bolster the competitiveness of rail as regards flexible and timely operation on demand.

In this context, this Work package aims at defining the overall functional, performance and safety requirement of the VCTS, identifying the possible technological architecture of the solution as well as characterizing the functionality and its business case.

WP6 will target the overall functional requirements and safety analysis of the solution while WP7 will focus on the technological solution, and thus the associated business case

WP8 – Cyber security specification and design

The main objectives of this work package are:
  • To finalise the guidelines for “railway cybersecurity system” and “security-by-design”.
  • To apply the final release of the guidelines to signalling generic railway architecture.
  • To apply the railway cybersecurity system for risk assessment to other technical demonstrators of Shift2Rail, to railway future and resilient architecture; and to legacy system. Derive from these risk assessments a proposal for the component protection profiles.
  • To perform a detailed specification of the demonstrator

WP9 – Secure verification of products, systems and services throughout the life-cycle

This work package will focus on the implementation of a holistic cybersecurity verification approach by covering the following topics:

  • Verification along product and system security life-cycle (IEC 62443-2-1, 2-4, 4-1)
  • Verification along the supply-chain, across multiple security stakeholders (IEC 62443-2-x, 4-1)
  • Demonstrator 1: Verification of vertical security patch management process (IEC 62443-2-3)
  • Demonstrator 2: Verification of cybersecurity components for adaptable communications.
  • Challenges and recommendations for a holistic, multi stakeholder-based security verification approach

WP10 – ATO over ETCS pilot test for freight demonstrator

The X2Rail 1 has developed interoperable specifications and developed prototypes for test bench and pilot lines test.
This work package will extend the pilot tests to rail freight. This demonstration will be done in coordination with the ARCC project.

The work package will:
  • Develop an adapter for connecting ATO-OB modules with the ARCC’s test locomotive’s ETCS equipment over the X2Rail-1 WP4 standardized interface;
  • Configure of ATO(s) provided by X2Rail-1 WP4 project according to the IP5 pilot train and pilot line (application engineering);
  • Support vehicle integration
  • Run demonstrations.

WP11 – Exploitation, Dissemination and Communication




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Bettina Doetsch

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DISCLAIMER: The preliminary information displayed on this website is for indicative purposes only. Displayed information on this website does not pre-determine the outcome of the Grant Agreement Preparation Phase nor the eventual conclusion or rejection of a Grant Agreement. Nothing stated here shall create rights or obligations towards the Shift2Rail Joint Undertaking.