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Jan Lundberg, professor inom drift- och underhållsteknik vid Luleå tekniska universitet.
Jan Lundberg, professor in Operations and Maintenance Engineering at Luleå University of Technology. View original picture , opens in new tab/window

Digitized control for future railway switches

Published: 6 September 2019

With a large number of sensors and the collection of large amounts of data, researchers at Luleå University of Technology will, using smart algorithms, produce more reliable analyzes for the health of railway switches. This technology aims to find a method for more efficient maintenance and less interruptions and delays, which costs society a lot of money today.

"If preventive maintenance of railway switches is carried out in a well-planned manner and before the breakdowns are a fact, these delay hours can be reduced by at least 50 percent according to Infranord's calculations. This corresponds to a social saving of at least 68 million SEK per year", says Jan Lundberg, professor in Operations and Maintenance Engineering at Luleå University of Technology.

With the collection of large amounts of data, "big data", trends and patterns in the analysis can give more stable forecasts of the condition of the railway switches and thus better predictive maintenance, which in return reduces maintenance costs, gives increased reliability and better utilization of transport infrastructure in Sweden.

"When 5G is introduced, good synergies with the project results will be realized. An important example of operational disruptions that the project will solve is when trains come from deviating tracks and enter the gear when it is in the wrong position (run-up). This results in the wheels stepping over the gear tongues, which results in damage to the train, the gearshift and total downtime. The repair costs for this problem alone are about 10 million kroner SEK per year and the related operational disruptions are very large", concludes Jan Lundberg.

The project, financed by Formas, will last for two years and will be implemented in collaboration with Bombardier, the Swedish Transport Administration and Infranord.

In the media:

Jan Lundberg

Jan Lundberg, Professor

Phone: +46 (0)920 491748
Organisation: Operation and Maintenance, Operation, Maintenance and Acoustics, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering