University of Twente Student Theses


Expediency of ATO in heavy rail : a decision-making framework

Akbari, Maryam (2020) Expediency of ATO in heavy rail : a decision-making framework.

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Abstract:Automatic train operation (ATO) is a relatively new trend in heavy rail. While technical specifications define system and functional requirements, the implementation of ATO is a business decision. This report describes the results of the master thesis research focused on: ‘Developing a framework to determine which corridors located in Dutch railways are suited best to apply ATO’. Additionally, several supporting research questions were prepared for the completeness of the work on a decision-making framework. The research focused on the application of ATO over ETCS Level 2 for various Grades of Automation (GoA). Starting with state of the art of automation for land transport modes (cars, metro), a structured approach was used to collect and define necessary input information for the decision-making framework. It was assumed that the important inputs will consist of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and corridor characteristics typical for the heavy rail environment. The analysis helped to select those corridor characteristics which have an influence on selected KPIs. A relation matrix was then elaborated to consider the relationship between KPIs, corridor characteristics and various GoA. This matrix was used as a template for the survey among several Dutch railway automation experts from train operating companies, infrastructure manager, suppliers and consultants. In a further step the ATO survey among the experts was performed and its results analysed. The expert’s opinion was then used in structuring the decision-making framework to analyse and assess the suitability of various railway corridors in The Netherlands to apply ATO. The framework was then applied to various Dutch rail corridors and results of the analyse were recorded and discussed. Moreover, the decision-making framework was validated by checking its applicability to metro solutions. The above activities enabled to answer the supporting research questions and to validate and conclude on the applicability of the decision-making framework for various types of rail corridors in The Netherlands. The master thesis is concluded with some recommendations for future research works on the ATO over ETCS subject.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ET: Engineering Technology
Subject:52 mechanical engineering
Programme:Mechanical Engineering MSc (60439)
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