Train connectivity tests on aggregated connectivity resulted in a Best Paper2023-03-24
How reliable are different methods for connecting to mobile networks to support train signaling systems? This is what Professor Anna Brunström and Associate Professor Johan Garcia at Karlstad University have investigated in collaboration with DRIVE partner Icomera. Their work was recently highlighted in the trade press and has previously been rewarded with a Best Paper award at the IEEE 36th International Workshop on Communications Quality and Reliability (CQR) in Virginia, USA, for the paper "Measuring and Modeling Aggregate LTE Connection Reliability for Train Operators".
Tests were conducted on 50 train sets operating on the Malmö-Stockholm route during the 2019-2021 time period. The assumption was that aggregated connectivity, i.e. multiple simultaneous connections, increases reliability and provides a more stable support for connectivity.
Multiple simultaneous data links connected two or three mobile operators to each train, resulting in a reliability of 99.994% - a significant improvement over using a single link to the best performing network operator. Both modeling and measurement results show a significant improvement in reliability when aggregating across multiple links, suggesting that commercial cellular networks may be useful for providing connectivity to future train signaling systems.
The studies show how the right technology to leverage existing commercial infrastructure provides a more reliable system while reducing the need for dedicated infrastructure and hardware. This allows authorities at all levels to reduce overall costs to society while offering many other benefits to transport operators and passengers.
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