With railroad host operating systems becoming more and more sophisticated, data acquisition has moved to a more mobile environment.
Application Technology By Design (ATBD) provides Automatic Equipment Identification (AEI) systems to the railway industry.
The company offers products to facilitate efficient operation and data acquisition for daily railroad and plant processes.
Its systems include dual-tone multi-frequency (DTMF) controlled switch machines and D-Rails, hot box detectors (HBD), dragging equipment detectors, and yard inventory data acquisition systems, automated rail gates, and of course AEI systems.
It also offers services, such as training, and turnkey systems, and monitoring and maintenance support.
Handheld AEI tag readers
ATBD supplies handheld AEI Tag Readers and ruggedised tablet PCs for mobile data acquisition.
The tag reader records car movements to facilitate reporting of ancillary train information, such as initials, numbers, trucks, and tanks and nozzles of train cars, as well as load / empty status, release time, inspection information and seal numbers.
Tablet PCs and handhelds offer host operating software for reporting on rail cars. The software helps personnel to place and remove rail cars from tracks, as well as displays real-time orders and locations of train cars on-site.
Monitoring and maintenance support for AEI systems
ATBD provides 24/7 monitoring and maintenance of AEI hardware and software, component analysis, site inspections and calibrations, repairs, remote diagnostics, and communication and vendor management.
The company can access sites remotely to help clients’ employees carry out repairs and predict system failures, as well as perform annual site visits to maintain systems and monitor communication paths.
Specific systems reviewed include wheel detectors, presence and communication systems, radio frequency (RF) modules, software and firmware, batteries, modems and processors.
Automatic Equipment Identification systems
ATBD provides turnkey installation and integration of AEI systems for mainline, gate, yard, loadout, storage and inventory management.
The systems offer single, double, and multiple-track configurations as well as integration with hot box detectors (HBD) and dragging equipment detection (DED) interfaces.
They provide web access to data, are interoperable with connecting railroads, meet all Association of American Railroads (AAR) standards, and handle all train movement types.
AEI data communication and processing
ATBD’s SPOTTER solution receives data from AEI or AAR-approved wayside systems.
The receiver collates and presents records for customers with a selection of sorting options, as well as enable them to track and trace equipment within databases.
SPOTTER provides access to AEI data, as well as a database of historical records online. Clients can view all of their AEI systems in one place, and export data for internal use with employees and customers.
Transportable AEI data readers
The company provides mobile AEI data readers in mainline and gate configurations.
Delivered and installed in one working day, the systems can be implemented on a temporary basis to determine if they are in the correct location, before being installed permanently by filling around the trailer chassis and antenna foundation with ballast.
AEI yard inventory reporting
ATBD provides field hardware, software, power, communications, and data acquisition systems for inventory management and reporting the standing order of railroad equipment.
The equipment meets AAR standards for operation and data formatting.
DTMF-controlled switch machines
ATBD supplies radio-controlled switch machines for yard and non-mainline applications.
The machines facilitate the continuous movement of trains by eliminating the need to stop, let off employees, throw the switch manually, and restart the movement.
The equipment saves time, and improves safety and efficiency.
The company offers versions of the DTMF switch machine that are used to throw and or apply bidirectional or switch point D-rails.
Trail operators can stay on the engine and line the D-rail remotely. Additional communications are available to provide for the operation of the switch machine from yard office.
AEI Hot Box Detectors
HBD systems can be upgraded to integrate as an AEI HBD, or new HBD can be ordered off-the-shelf with AEI system integration.
AEI technology can identify defective cars by providing the initial and number of failed equipment. The historical performance of a car can be managed over time to identify re-occurring potential and pending problems.
ATBD performs upgrades and integration, as well as provides complete turnkey systems.
Dragging Equipment Detectors
DEDs detect equipment travelling below the top of rail, or even on the ground.
These are fixed location detectors typically deployed ahead of bridges and structures with ample distance to stop a moving train.
ATBD can install these simple, low-cost detectors with indicator lights and radio communication, as well as integrate them with existing systems.