Guardia is a European Train Control System (ETCS) developed by Stadler and the joint venture Angelstar. It is set to be launched on the FLIRT trains for Swiss rail company BLS.
The train protection system enables drivers to visualise the vehicle’s position, speed and secure additional data, which gets relayed to the control centre.
Stadler Signalling head Alexandre Grêt said: “We are delighted to be able to equip BLS trains with our automatic train protection system. To ensure the company’s independence, it is important for Stadler to be able to offer its own signalling solutions. This is also a significant step forward into the digital future for Stadler.”
BLS project manager Stefan Maurer said: “We welcome this competition in the field of automatic train protection systems and are convinced that Guardia will prove to be an innovative, reliable and flexible automatic train protection system for our BLS FLIRT trains. It will keep our annual system operating costs low and vehicle availability high. Alongside the security aspect, it will also be of direct benefit to our customers.”
Two years ago, Stadler decided to invest in signalling technology. The Angelstar joint venture with Mermec was part of this expansion.
Stadler had also set up its own engineering facility in Wallisellen.
ETCS is the European standard for automatic train control. The Guardia solution is currently undergoing field tests and the approval process for the technology has begun in Switzerland. It will be simultaneously launched in several European countries.
The FLIRT trains for BLS will be equipped with the ETCS level-2 system (SRS 3.4.0).
ETCS level-2 automatic train protection makes use of digital communication technology (GSM-R) to follow train movements in the Radio Block Centre (RBC) and meets security standards due to tested SIL4 signalling hardware.
BLS placed an order for 52 FLIRT trains, with an option for 90 more vehicles earlier this year. The approval tests will start in 2019, with trains being put into service between 2021-25.