GATX: DIGITAL AUTOMATED COUPLING OPTIMIZATION DEVELOPMENTS WITH NEW OPERATIONAL TESTS
Welcome to our latest Digital Automated Coupling (DAC) update. It is time to follow up on our latest spring report about shunting yard tests, the rigorous DAC test drives the newest wagon types are currently undergoing.
For those of you who did not make it to the Innotrans DAC presentations a few weeks ago, we summarized recent developments here.
DAC Summer Tests Completed in Czech Republic and Poland
In addition to tests in winter 2021 and early 2022, the DAC test train with additional wagon types has also completed a series of tests in Germany but as well in the Czech Republic and Poland. Check out the DAC4EU video for more insights. With phase II of the project completed, the consortium is now tasked with delivering a detailed report to the German Transport Ministry, the EDDP (European DAC Delivery Program), and the newly founded Europe’s Rail Joint Undertaking (ERJU).
DAC at Innotrans
Thanks to the German Transport Ministry (BMVD), the DAC4EU Train was on display at the Innotrans fair. It was one of the event’s main attractions, and DAC4EU representatives presented the latest progress to visitors from across Europe. Roman Mayer from GATX Rail Europe participated in the showcase to explain the DAC4EU achievements and the expected future steps.
German Transport Ministry Prolongs DAC4EU Consortia Funding for Additional Tests
At Innotrans, the German Transport Ministry announced the DAC4EU consortia’s funding extension until June 2024. The main objective for the extension is to solve open issues with potential DAC manufacturers that were discovered in phase II of the project. These include:
- Mechanical uncoupling from the wagon side
- Buffer position for shunting activities on shunting yard
- Testing 400 Volt AC 2-phase, since it was realized that the original 110 Volt were not enough to supply the whole train with power (until the last wagon)
- Data exchange / physical layer – additional testing for Single Pair Ethernet (SPE) vs. Powerline+ to make a decision on which of the two to move forward with
- Communication and alignment with EDDP and ERJU as to avoid overlaps with the EU-level project plans
DAC facilitates higher transport efficiency with its automated coupling of air, power and data lines while enabling digitalization, thus cutting costs by replacing the manual coupling of trains-inrail freight transport. With DAC, European rail transport achieves a higher transparency and competitiveness while better achieving our environmental goals.