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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Modern signaling, communication systems ready for worldwide roll-out, says UIC


With more than 650 delegates having attended the World ERTMS Conference March 20 and 21 in Florence, Italy, worldwide interest in the advanced signaling and telecommunication system is growing.
At least that’s what International Union of Railways (UIC) and Italian Railways officials believe after organizing the conference to showcase ERTMS, a rail traffic management system consisting of unified train control-command (ETCS) and radio communications (GSM-R).
In Florence, signaling and telecommunication professionals, European and international suppliers, and railroad officials learned that UIC, the European Commission, and international railroads and suppliers have drawn up technical and functional ERTMS specifications, and that ETCS and GSM-R systems now are available in European and world markets.
ETCS control-command systems are designed to provide reliable, safe and optimal line-capacity use, and more cost-effective train operation for all line categories and train types.
GSM-R communications systems are designed to transmit data and instructions within ETCS, providing group-call and preemption functions during operations.
With testing and experimentation stages complete, ERTMS now is entering an operational implementation phase, with several countries expressing interest, UIC officials claim.
For example, Italy’s high-speed Direttissima line between Florence and Aerzzo already has been fully outfitted with ERTMS.