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November 26, 2013

ÖBB-Infrastruktur contracts OptaSense for distributed acoustic sensing system

Austrian Rail ÖBB-Infrastruktur has contracted OptaSense to provide its patented distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) system for use on rail infrastructure near Vienna.

By admin-demo

Austrian Rail ÖBB-Infrastruktur has contracted OptaSense to provide its patented distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) system for use on rail infrastructure near Vienna.

DAS technology will be implemented by Austrian Rail to monitor railway line to stop unauthorised access by metal thieves and vandals, while delivering operational enhancements to the infrastructure.

OptaSense managing director Magnus McEwen-King said: "We are pleased to be able to provide ÖBB with OptaSense technology which will enable them to monitor and reduce the impact of unauthorised intrusion on to their rail infrastructure by giving them decision-ready data.

"We are very interested in the potential of this exciting technology."

"We look forward to demonstrating the additional operational benefits of OptaSense to reduce their overall running and maintenance costs associated with events like wheel flats, hotbox and other track or train based issues."

As part of an initial three-month proof-of-concept contract, the existing 40km-long trackside communication fibre optic cables will be transformed by OptaSense into thousands of virtual microphones.

The conversion will provide operators with real-time data to help identify and classify activity along the entire line.

In order to help operators deliver quick responses to any security alerts, the data gathered will be directed to the ÖBB-Infrastruktur AG security control and transport police centres.

Austrian Rail spokesman Klaus Leithner said: "We are very interested in the potential of this exciting technology and can see significant benefits in a distributed acoustic sensing (DAS) system. Initially, we are focussing on detecting and apprehending metal thieves who cause disruption to our operational network."

OptaSense has been offering its rail assets monitoring services since 2008 in Germany, the UK, and the US and to date has monitored more than 320km of track.

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