In the Railway industry, where safety and efficiency are paramount, Kodifly has been recognised with Product Launches and Safety awards for its cutting-edge Railway Vegetation Management solution at the 2024 Railway Technology Excellence Awards.

The Railway Technology Excellence Awards celebrate the greatest achievements and innovations in the railway industry. Powered by the business intelligence of GlobalData, the programme recognises the companies that are driving change globally.

While the Product Launches award acknowledges Kodifly’s successful introduction of a solution that addresses a critical need within the railway sector, the Safety award recognises the significant contribution that Kodifly’s solution makes to railway safety.

Challenges faced by railway operators in vegetation management

Rail operators face challenges in maintaining the service quality, managing safety, and optimising operational efficiency.

  1. Need for Constant Monitoring: Given the staggering extent of over 1.3 million kilometres of railway tracks worldwide, the daily monitoring of vegetation is indeed overwhelming.
  2. Amplified Duties during Bad Weather: Rain and typhoon season forces operators to ramp up their preventive efforts, resulting in a rough increase in vegetation management activities during these periods.
  3. Risk of Accidents: The Railway Safety Standards Board cites overgrowth as the cause of approximately 10% of train accidents, a figure attributable to felled trees and obscured signals.
  4. Conservation Concerns: An estimated 2.8 million trees are culled annually in the UK alone for railway vegetation management, emphasising the need to strike a balance between safety and environmental stewardship.

Kodifly’s innovative approach to railway vegetation management

Kodifly’s solution leverages advanced 3D and spatial technologies to tackle this issue head-on, providing a comprehensive tool that ensures railways remain clear and functional.

Kodifly's approach to railway vegetation management

One of the standout features of Kodifly’s vegetation management solution is its integration of Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology, GNSS positioning, and edge computing, which helps to accurately map the surrounding vegetation, swiftly identify and localise areas that require attention.

Kodifly's solution

Daily scanning of railway network

Kodifly - railway network scanning

The solution’s 3D Digital Twin Creation utilises precise LiDAR scanning and SLAM technology. LiDAR captures depth and volume, SLAM accurately maps railway infrastructure in 3D. The output is a dense 3D Map with precise dimensions of tracks, trees, poles, etc.  

AI-Powered Insights

Advanced artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms are applied on the Digital Twins for identification of crucial inspection and safety insights, including intruding trees with different risk levels and predictive maintenance strategies that monitor the growth of trees, allowing for timely, economical fixes.

Digital Infrastructure Database

The SpatialSense Cloud Analytics Platform, a key component of Kodifly’s solution, features a mapped digital database of railway vegetation, analysis of 3D point cloud data, and actionable insights on vegetation intrusion.

The platform allows for the view and export of point cloud and video data, inspection and maintenance reports for teams, which include a QR code with location for easy access, facilitating easy maintenance scheduling and on-site checking.

Enhancing railway safety with LiDAR technology

LiDAR use in vegetation management minimises the need for manual inspections. Manual inspections can be time-consuming, dangerous, and are prone to human error. Kodifly’s solution reduces the frequency of trackside work. This limits the exposure of maintenance crews to the risks associated with working near active railway lines.

This enhances railway personnel safety and overall rail operational efficiency. A reported 10X improvement in operational workflow, including an 80% lower cost of vegetation inspection, a 30% lower risk of unexpected incidents, and a 45% improvement in operational efficiency.

Cutting down costs through innovative technology

Cost reduction is another significant benefit. The automation of the vegetation management process eliminates the need for regular manual inspections, which are not only labour-intensive but also costly. By identifying potential issues early, it also reduces the likelihood of costly repairs or replacements that might result from damage caused by unmanaged vegetation. Furthermore, by minimising the risk of accidents, it reduces potential liabilities and associated costs. The user-friendly interface of the product also ensures that staff training costs are kept to a minimum.

Environmental sensitivity and operational efficiency

Another aspect of Kodifly’s solution that merits recognition is its environmental sensitivity. Traditional methods of vegetation management often involve the use of herbicides, which can have detrimental effects on local ecosystems. Kodifly’s targeted approach, informed by precise LiDAR data, allows for more selective and controlled vegetation removal. This minimises the environmental impact and supports sustainable maintenance practices, aligning with the growing emphasis on ecological responsibility within the industry.

Setting new standards in railway infrastructure management

The integration of Kodifly’s vegetation management solution into railway operations also has broader implications for network reliability and punctuality. By ensuring that tracks and signals remain unobstructed, the system helps to prevent delays and cancellations caused by vegetation-related issues. This reliability is crucial for maintaining customer satisfaction and trust in rail transport as a dependable mode of travel.

Kodifly’s vegetation management solution, thus, represents a significant advancement in railway maintenance technology. The dual awards are well-deserved recognitions of the system’s innovative approach to tackling a longstanding industry challenge. By harnessing the power of LiDAR technology, Kodifly is not only enhancing the safety and efficiency of rail operations but is also setting new standards for environmentally conscious infrastructure management. As the railway industry continues to evolve, solutions like Kodifly’s will play a pivotal role in shaping its future.

Company Profile

The Kodifly team

Kodifly revolutionises transportation infrastructure inspection and maintenance with advanced mobile 3D scanners and AI-powered spatial analytics software. Specialising in railways, highways, and airports, their technology swiftly detects defects, decay, displacement, and intrusions, delivering actionable insights for proactive asset management. Their integrated 3D scanning and point cloud analytics not only reduce inspection costs but also lower the risk of unforeseen incidents, enhancing operational efficiency and ensuring the safety and longevity of critical infrastructure.

Contact details

Unit 661, 6/F, Building 19W, No. 19 Science Park West Avenue

Hong Kong Science Park

Hong Kong

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