ENSCO, Inc. announced today that it has received a patent for its video inspection system for rail components from the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The patent covers our innovative machine vision system and methods for inspection of rail components such as turnouts, fastenings and joint bars using advanced fully automated machine vision techniques.

In support of increased railroad safety and efficiency demands, the innovative approaches covered under this patent address new applications for imaging rail components from a moving vehicle for the purpose of automatically detecting the presence of a rail component and inspecting it for possible unsafe conditions.

The technology is currently applied on many automated Joint Bar Inspection systems deployed throughout North America and is being integrated in ENSCO’s other advanced image processing systems. To date, these systems have detected the presence of over 11,000 defective rail joints that have been verified on the ground and replaced.

Additionally, this patent protects other automated systems that promote industry safety and efficiency including switch and fastener video inspection.

For 40 years, ENSCO has been a leading provider of advanced railway safety technologies throughout the world. ENSCO develops new solutions to improve rail safety and performance and is the industry’s premier source for track inspection, vehicle/track interaction consulting, railroad safety/security products and railroad asset management technology.