“Smart” trains require split-second, completely reliable communications—between train and track, between different trains, and among cars on the same train—for crucial operations such as braking. Trains can stretch for a mile or two, making it impossible for human locomotive engineers to be aware if something goes wrong in a distant part of the train. On a larger scale, managing train schedules and optimizing car configurations means taking into account myriad factors, including peak transportation hours, the effect of cargo types or passenger actions (e.g., opening windows), track conditions, and railroad crossing operations.

Trains need communications able to sense and react dynamically and sometimes instantaneously, without relying on human intervention. Throughout the world, modern railroad systems are implementing Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) applications, including those based on the LonWorks® industry-standard networking protocols. And using advanced IIoT technologies such as those provided by Echelon’s IzoT™ platform, trains can operate more efficiently and safely. Or to put it another way: Trains can become smart.

Case Studies

Smart System for Santa Clara Trains Case Study

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Echelon Helps ACELA Stay on Track

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How to create and monitor an IzoT-based control network.

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The Anatomy of IoT: Features, Functions, and Capability.

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