Traffic Management is becoming increasingly important across Europe as a way to maximise operational efficiencies. In the UK, Network Rail’s plans for a more affordable, higher performance railway will take a step forward when the first phase of a new nationwide traffic management system is deployed before the end of 2015. The subsequent national roll out of the TMS system to 12 Regional Operational Centres has now entered the procurement phase.

TREsim for Traffic Management

Although the original safety and business case for full-fidelity simulators was the training and ongoing assessment of signallers, their accuracy has opened up a number of other uses. For example, TRE’s TREsim was used as the prime evaluation platform against which the UK Traffic Management System suppliers’ prototype systems were evaluated.

Using the simulator in this way enabled extensive project de-risking and encouraged stakeholder engagement as all aspects of the Traffic Management System could be demonstrated in a model office environment.

TRE is also developing the training simulator, which is a key requirement for the national deployment. The simulator will replicate the inputs that would normally be presented to a Traffic Management System. This includes points’ signalling, interlocking and train detection equipment such as track circuits and axle counters, telephone equipment, and CCTV at level crossings.

The system is also able to aid the validation of the field system data during integration and implementation of live systems.

The simulator will also have an interface that can be used by a trainer to monitor and manage the equipment being simulated. High fidelity simulation allows normal and extreme situations to be modelled and trained ensuring that staff and system readiness can be fully evaluated prior to live use.