Shift2Rail logo A body of the European Union

Cost-efficient and reliable trains, including high-capacity trains and high-speed trains

IP Coordinator: Javier Goikoetxea - CAF


Total Project Value:
€ 8 973 662,69
from 01/12/2020 to 31/07/2023
S2R (Of H2020) co-funding:
€ 3 945 649,45
Igor Lopez
Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles, S.A.


The Train Control and Monitoring System (TCMS) is the brain and the communications backbone of the train, which has some essential roles on vehicle performance. It integrates and manages all on-board information; it makes train control decisions taking into account the global state of subsystems; it performs communication between equipment, between cars and between vehicles; and it integrates and interacts between different subsystems of the train. 

Successful integration of subsystems and the commissioning of TCMS require huge efforts and take an extremely long time due to the lack of standardised application profiles, appropriate architectures and simulation and testing frameworks. The increasing number of new services and applications brings several modifications of the TCMS implemented functions along the train’s life, implying re-commissioning the TCMS every time. The current standard in TCMS homologation is largely based on Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA) based on the TCMS architecture and extensive testing on laboratory setups as well as on the real train. Testing on the train, in particular, requires a great effort and takes lots of time – often delaying the start of service operation for entire fleets significantly. This situation can be significantly improved also by developing a homologation process based on simulation. 

Innovation and development of TCMS have been identified as a potential enabler for train weight reduction and increase in reliability1. The integration of functions may reduce weight due to the reduced amount of wires and controllers of each component. A wireless coupling would increase reliability by eliminating electrical system errors. Therefore, a complete new TCMS architecture, mixing wired and wireless communications, enhanced interoperability, and “driven-by-data” concept, is needed. In order to achieve this goal, the future work in TCMS needs to include the definition of new protocols and application profiles, software framework supporting reallocation of functions, the definition and validation of the wireless technology, the definition, design and manufacturing of new devices (routers, repeaters, sensors, end-devices, gateways...) while taking into account safety and security aspects, which may imply the design or use of specific encryption hardware. Both, the virtual coupling together with the functional open coupling concepts, will mean the complete interoperability from the TCMS perspective, while paving the way for a new way of operating trains by creating chains of virtually coupled trains, which can be attached and detached dynamically according to the service needs and available slots. 

In that sense, the Shift2Rail project CONNECTA-1 (GA 730539), which started on 1st September 2016 and ended on 30th September 2018, has started to develop the aforementioned technical solutions by producing a comprehensive set of specifications and architectures, and by selecting appropriate technologies. The results and outputs of CONNECTA-1 with a TRL 3/4 were carried on by CONNECTA-2 (826098), which started the 1st October 2018 and will end the 31st March 2021, providing prototypes with a TRL 4/5.

The high level objective of the work is to continue the activities started in CONNECTA-2 to bring the technologies to TRL6/7 and deploying them in relevant laboratory scenarios and real train units. 
Such activities aim to: 
  • Develop the ability to implement SIL4 functions in the TCMS to perform additional safety-critical tasks, removing safe train lines and integrating signalling equipment; 
  • Increase in the availability of trains related to the functioning of train control and monitoring by 50%; 
  • Develop the ability to couple any pair of multiple units of different types, which is a feature totally non-existent and can significantly increase line capacity; 
  • Support technologically the development of the “virtual coupling” concept, which can dramatically increase the capacity of lines, and; 
  • Reduce cost, time and effort in project engineering, integration and homologation phases by 50%. 

Project Structure

WP1 - Deployment of high TRL

TThe main objective of this WP is the deployment of NG-TCMS solutions with a TRL up to TRL6/7. This includes the definition of actions to be performed to reach an higher TRL as well as to ensure interoperability and certification with the definition of conformance tests and the safety case definition. The respective documents will serve as input for WP2 and WP3 as well as for the standardisation.
The components the deployment of which is to be made are listed below:

  • FDF
  • HW architecture prepared for SIL4
  • Safe Train Inauguration
  • SDTv4
  • Next Generation TCN architecture over TSN
  • Wireless Train Backbone
  • Wireless Consist Network
  • Mobile Communication Gateway (T2G)
  • Functional Open Coupling
  • Subsystem functions according to Application Profiles (BMS, Doors, HVAC…)

WP2 - Urban High TRL Demonstrators Management

The scope of this WP is the management of High TRL demonstrator which will be divided in:
  • Preparation of High TRL solutions tests in urban lab environments.
  • Test of High TRL solutions in urban lab environments.
  • Preparation of High TRL solutions tests in a real train unit from Euskotren operator.
  • Test of High TRL solutions in depot and field tests.
  • Re-commission the Euskotren’s train unit to its original state.
With the exception of Wireless Train Backbone, technologies related to NG-TCMS (FDF, DbD, MCG, Application Profiles) will be tested and validated in real train unit. Wireless Train Backbone is dependent on the wireless technology maturity which for the moment does not allow achieving TRL6/7; therefore its deployment will continue (e.g. providing redundancy support) in laboratory.

WP3 - Regional High TRL Demonstrators Management

The main objective of this WP is the management of High TRL demonstrator which will be divided in:
  • Preparation of High TRL solutions tests in relevant lab environments
  • Test of High TRL solutions in relevant lab environments
  • Preparation of High TRL solutions tests in field
  • Test of High TRL solutions in field
To safe time and budget all tests not necessarily needing a real train environment will be done in laboratory with the help of the Virtual Certification Framework on a demonstrator with simulated relevant environment (sub-systems, conventional train control, coupled consists). Field tests on a real train will be done only for the technologies that can’t be comprehensively tested in a simulated environment e.g. Wireless Consist Network.  Test objects are the HW components CCU, IO, ETBN, CS, WLCN and the technologies FDF, SDTv4, Safe Train Inauguration, FOC, Application Profiles and Virtual Certification Framework.

WP4 - New functionalities for NG-TCMS

This WP leads with new specifications for the NG-TCMS in order to complement the already offered services regarding T2G and cybersecurity. More specifically, the WP has the following objectives:
  • Specification of additional functions for T2G communications not covered by the IEC 61375-2-6, such as the CCTV
  • Specification of the full interface based on SIP for the interoperability with the Adaptable Communication System
  • Benchmarking activity of such activity outcome with regard the current IEC 61375 series and other upcoming standards from different industries
  • Preparation to the handle the up-coming problems of cybersecurity

WP5 - Integration of NG-TCMS with other on-board systems

This WP mainly deals with the definition of interfaces between the TCMS with other on-board systems and operator-oriented requirements for handling vehicles during the lifetime. Main topics are:
  • Integration of ATO functionalities (up to GoA4) in form of Application Profiles and the FOC interface definition: A major requirement for a possible adoption of the CONNECTA concept in the market is the availability of standardised Application Profiles for each subsystem of the train. Therefore, the definition of Application Profiles for further subsystems will continue. Furthermore, the work on the standardisation of the inter-consist communication (Functional Open Coupling) will continue.
  • Interoperability with CCS systems (OCORA), IT systems (ITxPT), Autonomous Functions (Doors) will be studied. Interoperability will be considered at inter-consist level as well for multiple units.
  • Data availability: The availability of data - e.g. for CBM reasons - will be shown. For this purpose, a test device will be created.
  • Exchangeability of subsystems: A study will show if the exchangeability of subsystems is possible for operators without involvement of the original train / TCMS manufacturer and what are the implications regarding certification.

WP6 - Dissemination and Exploitation

WP7 - Project Management and Technical Coordination




Results and Publications



D4.2 – Intermediate Report on Cybersecurity measure for NG-TCMS (under review)


D7.2 - Data Management Plan


All deliverables, results and publications herewith provided reflects only the author's view and the S2R JU is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No: 101014811