Communications provider evo-rail is bringing its rail-5G solution to the US market on the Caltrain network, alongside Nomad Digital and Alstom

UK-based evo-rail, part of the First Group, has previously provided its rail-5G mmWave radio technology to rail operators in the UK and Spain, and will now bring it to the San Francisco to San Jose Caltrain line. 

CEO Simon Holmes said: “This cutting-edge technology and solution will be integral for Caltrain to deliver a safer, more reliable and efficient rail transportation system for its customers and staff in the San Francisco Bay Area.” 

As well as improving Wi-Fi for customers travelling on the line, the technology will also enable Caltrain to gather real-time data through onboard sensors collecting information on train performance, customer movements, and infrastructure conditions. 

It is being installed alongside Nomad Digital, a provider of train Wi-Fi and Internet of Things solutions, which will provide the wireless infrastructure, and rail manufacturer Alstom, which will work on the onboard sensors and data analytics tools. 

Rail-5G was the first multi-gigabit internet solution built for the rail industry and can provide internet access 50 times faster than the average speed in the industry. 

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The technology is expected to be fully operational on the line in early 2024, shortly before the scheduled completion date for the railway’s electrification project. 

That project will see the electrification of the corridor between the San Francisco Caltrain Station and Tamien Caltrain Station in San Jose, it recently benefitted from $367m of state funding to help plug a financing gap.