Development in the railway sector is currently focused on EU deadlines for exchange and settlement of energy in July of 2020.
International collaboration within the railway energy sector in Europe promotes this effort to standardise. Train companies work together to compete as a green transportation method into the future.
The European Commission previously published regulation EU 2018/868. This implementation regulation closed the open point of communication between onboard energy meters to the data collection systems on the ground.
As of 4 July 2020, every EU member state must ensure that it has implemented an on-ground settlement system. Each suitable settlement system accurately receives data from a Data Collection System (DCS) and accepts the data for billing. The settlement system exchanges Compiled Energy Billing Data (CEBD) with other settlement systems. Then, the settlement system validates the CEBD and allocates consumption data to whoever requires the information. The dissemination of this data considers all relevant legislation, both national and that of the European Commission.
Eight European countries, including Sweden, Finland, Belgium, The Netherlands, and most recently Spain, decided to join with Eress to use Erex. Each saw the need to forestall implementation and management issues to comply with these EU regulations.
The proposal to regulate the governance of the Energy Union is all part of the ‘Clean Energy for all Europeans’ package. Issued in 2016 by the European Commission, the package includes legislative proposals to deliver the EU 2030 climate and energy targets.
Measured train journeys show 30 percent energy savings when using the Erex system from Eress. This achievement meets and exceeds the EU’s environmental target of a 27 percent increase in energy efficiency by 2030.
The Energy Union governance system helps coordinate efforts and develops long-term strategies for decarbonisation. By November 2015, the Council of the EU had adopted conclusions that identified the governance system’s main components. Specifically, they stressed that National Plans would need to be finalised by December 2019. Now, the next phases for 2020 and 2022 move forward in the pre-determined timeline.
Starting in November 2014, energy meters became compulsory on all new, renewed and upgraded rolling stock. (Commission Regulation 1302/2014)
Every EU country, starting in 2020, must have a settlement system. By July 2020, each member state in the EU must exchange and settle energy data. This includes both the validation and allocation of energy consumption to the correct end-users. (Commission Regulation 1301/2014)
Every EU country must have a Data Collection System (DCS) in place by 2022. Starting in January 2022, each member state in the EU must collect and exchange energy data. (Commission Implementing Act amendment of TSI ENE and TSI LOC&PAS)
Railway energy interoperability makes it possible for international trains to pass smoothly throughout the EU using different national railway systems. This cooperation is vital to the creation of a functional, integrated European railway. Interoperability enhances train transport competitiveness for both passengers and freight. So, operators and infrastructure managers adopting energy monitoring and billing systems link directly to technical harmonisation for railway energy ulitisation.
An accurate measurement of energy consumption is the starting point for energy efficiency programmes. A clear understanding of energy usage patterns allows users to modify behaviours and shift standards. In addition, accurate measurement of energy consumption is a prerequisite for correct settlement and billing of energy costs. Train operators pay for their real energy consumption and at the correct marked prices. Neither consumption nor marked prices can rely on inaccurate estimates.
The EU Exchange, Settlement and Collection of Energy Solutions Regulations require members to make changes for July 2020 and January 2022. Each EU country is expected to put an energy settlement system in place by 4 July 2020. Then, the data collection system can wait to be on the ground by 2022.
Using Erex fulfils all current EU requirements.
For invoices to be processed accurately, EU countries must meet two specific requirements. Firstly, the train operators are required to have onboard energy meters installed on all trains. Secondly, infrastructure managers must implement a data collection service that collects data from each of the onboard energy meters. Then, the data is processed by an energy settlement system that analyses and sorts all energy data according to national rules and prepares the invoices.
Mandatory energy meters have been around since the previous EU commission regulation in 2014 on new, renewed, and upgraded rolling stock. Nothing changed in terms of energy billing in 2019. However, for 4 July 2020, every EU member state must have their energy settlement system up and running. With only a few months to meet the deadline, countries are out of time for developing and implementing these settlement systems on their own.
For EU member states that have preferred to develop and implement a separate, distinct system, they created a tender, followed up, and will need to put it in service. This complex process is both expensive and time-consuming, uses infrastructure personnel and resources, and adds additional technical and non-compliance risks. Fortunately, joining a successful, fully functional, running application with customised features saves time, budget and eliminates non-compliance risks. Without the requirement to create a tender, the most efficient way to meet the 4 July deadline is to join Eress.
Ultimately, these latest EU regulations are designed to standardise the railway sector. Since each country shares borders with other countries, managing a multitude of approaches to energy settlement becomes an enormous challenge. As more EU member states use the standardised Erex system, more precise energy settlements expedite billing processes across the industry. The same energy settlement system across borders allows countries greater freedom of collaboration. Plus, a consistent approach allows for absolute elimination of any country-to-country data exchange issues.
Measured train journeys show a 30 percent energy savings when using Erex. Since the EU environmental target for 2030 is a 27 percent increase in energy efficiency, so far, eight EU member states have implemented the all-in-one, customisable system.
The highest expense for train operators remains as payments to access the network. However, the second-most significant expense is energy costs. So, energy metering, data collection, and accurate invoicing based on metered data become a critical issue across the sector.
Previously reluctant train operators managed the costs of meter installation for initial compliance. Over time the operators discovered that metered energy allows infrastructure managers to invoice accurately. When bills are based on the exact cost of energy consumption, operators focus on saving energy. More efficient operation becomes top-of-mind, so by purchasing energy-efficient rolling stock, train operators have quickly seen continual returns on their investments.
To determine the return on investment (ROI), train operators compare installation costs of the meters to the annual consumption costs of traction units. The initial investment of between €10,000 to €20,000 immediately gains between five and ten percent yearly return. So, the meters often take only one year to see a return, although some do take up to two years, at most.
Energy metering allows train operators to know precisely how much energy they save. And, therefore, support a reduction of the energy bills. So, protecting the environment through saving energy and cutting costs by paying for meters upfront provides an enormous incentive for EU member states to start metering energy consumption.
Energy meters directly impact energy efficiency. Eco-driving, analysing the energy consumption, and the circulation of rolling stock material all engage through the use of energy metering systems.
Infrastructure managers use onboard energy meters for more precise data. From an infrastructure perspective, more accurate data allows for more precise forecasting and settlements. Ultimately, this develops a foundation for additional market fairness. Plus, when operators fully equip their trains with onboard meters, they then attain the direct right to purchase energy for real marked prices.
In most countries, energy settlement and billing systems are notoriously complex. However, many still flounder, trying to measure exact energy consumption levels. The installation of onboard energy meters by train operators enables infrastructure managers to provide accurate invoicing services. Energy settlement and billing systems rely on the onboard energy meters to collect the initial data. Only then can accurate invoices be created based on the real energy consumption, instead of estimated consumption levels.
Infrastructure managers can then oversee energy distribution in the most efficient way possible. Besides, train operators become more responsible for individual energy consumption levels. As a result, the operators are more likely to behave proactively to improve energy efficiency.
The chain of dependencies, including the onboard meters, energy settlement and billing systems, develop a foundation for international communication and energy savings.
Eight European countries, including Switzerland, Sweden, Finland, Belgium, The Netherlands, and most recently, Spain, have implemented Erex, the Eress, open-source cross-border system. This metered energy billing works independently of each country’s infrastructure and the train operators. A radical innovation for the railway sector, any existing system can utilise the complete Erex solution with almost no learning curve.
When Swiss Railways (SBB) decided to introduce energy billing using onboard meters, they quickly discovered there were many questions, complications and potential risks. They needed to define billing systems criteria to cover every possible scenario. They soon recognised that a whole new system would have been costly, plus their personnel didn’t have this kind of knowledge or experience. So, they joined Eress.
As a result, they quickly introduced a fully operational, industry-proven, metered billing system customised to the Swiss railway network.
Some customisation and adaptation to domestic specifications make this turn-key solution a natural choice. Each member state saves thousands of hours and the high costs of specialised R&D. All of the research and development is complete in this ready-to-use application. This is true for all EU member states.
The rail infrastructure manager in Spain, ADIF, maintains a strong commitment to the EU community, energy conservation and sustainable development. As of 1 January 2020, the Spanish state-owned Administrator of Railway Infrastructures, ADIF, joined as the eighth European Eress partner.
ADIF sees the Erex IT solution as an innovative industry leader between the energy and railway sectors. Facing the July 2020 deadline, ADIF searched for an accurate method to invoice the energy consumed by national trains. They knew they required a solution to perform actual calculations for each and every train across their network.
“It is key for ADIF to be ready to face the new challenges that the liberalisation of the passenger service will bring up. The deadline set by the EU for the supply and invoicing of energy based on the amount of electricity effectively consumed by each train is fast approaching. Therefore, it is important for us to ensure that we will be ready to enforce a single system already implemented in seven other European countries.”
The core values of ADIF focus on a spirit of responsible social commitment to the European community and within Spain.
“In addition, it is important for us to learn from the successful experiences in Norway, Belgium, Denmark, Switzerland, Sweden, Netherlands and Finland that have already overcome the challenge. We hope that the agreement we have just signed with Eress on 1 January 2020, will help us succeed in our goal of implementing this system under a framework of certainty, confidence and transparency.”
As a result, ADIF, the infrastructure manager, and train operators in Spain, now benefit from imported, secured, allocated, settled and distributed data, following national and international requirements.
As other European countries follow ADIF’s example, the railway sector could reduce the consumption of electrical power comparable to 35 million European households.
“As Spain puts the Erex system into production, we see this as another major milestone for the standardisation of settling traction energy throughout Europe. The Eress organisation has been working closely with ADIF to be able to take this step into the future. We have seen continual growth recently, and the fact that Spain is running its data on the Erex system again confirms that we are absolutely prepared to satisfy even the most demanding requirements.”
EU Regulations require members to have an energy settlement system in place by 2020 and a data collection system on the ground by 2022. It costs nothing to become a partner with Eress.
There remain many significant challenges as railway technology moves into the 21st century. However, the standardisation of international railways and updating data collection and settlement systems paves the way into the future. Ultimately, it is time for a significant improvement in efficiency, profitability and compliance for train operators and infrastructure managers across all member states.
Alstom’s first C-series railcar for Metronet is on its way to the Nowergup depot to begin dynamic testing in mid-September.
Oxford station will undergo a 161 million GBP upgrade that will enable more freight and passenger services.
Canadian Pacific has received regulatory clearance from the Committee on Foreign Investment to combine CP and Kansas City Southern.
Governor Hochul joined the MTA at a ceremonial opening of the first section of the Long Island Rail Road's (LIRR) Main Line third track.
Brightline has been awarded a 25 million USD grant to enhance safety along the Florida East Coast Railway/Brightline corridor.
With testing and commissioning of Perth’s Forrestfield-Airport Link entering its final stages, operations will begin in October.
Eversholt Rail and Vivarail have signed an agreement to develop a battery power and range extension system for Class 321 ‘Renatus’ trains.
CRRC has completed the production of the customised electric multiple units (EMU) for Indonesia's Jakarta-Bandung high-speed railway line.
ILSA has begun technical testing of the Frecciarossa 1000 on the railway line between Madrid and Barcelona in Spain.
Banedanmark has awarded a 509 million DKK contract to MT Højgaard to construct a new railway bridge across Guldborgsund in Sjælland, Denmark.
Deutsche Bahn is adding almost 1,000 new employees to its service team for long-distance services in response to poor punctuality.
Amtrak has announced it will be making the entrance to New York Penn Station at 7th Avenue and 32nd Street more accessible.
California High Speed Railway has been awarded 25 million USD in federal RAISE Grant funding for the Merced Extension Design Project.
At the Future Mobility Showcase Day hosted by WMGC, Coventry City Council presented its ongoing Coventry Very Light Rail Project.
Network Rail has signed a contract with EDF Renewables UK for the supply of 49.9MW of solar power for non-traction power requirements.
Rolling stock manufacturer Talgo has received an order for seven night trains and 15 years of maintenance from Egyptian National Railways.
Patriot Rail Company LLC has entered into an agreement to acquire Pioneer Lines, which operates 15 short line railroads across 12 states.
The world's first fully automated heavy-rail system AutoHaul has been increased by 166km to connect Rio Tinto's new Gudai-Darri iron ore mine.
WOF Expo Prague - the leading platform for transport, logistics and supply chain solutions in the CEE region - will take place this October.
Hyundai Rotem and Knorr-Bremse have signed a five-year framework agreement for the supply of braking, entrance and HVAC systems.
The Samuel de Champlain Bridge in Quebec has opened to light rail traffic, forming part of the Réseau express métropolitain (REM) line.
South Western Railway (SWR) has begun a three-month trial of a new app designed to improve station accessibility.
The Arctic Gateway Group, which owns and operates the Hudson Bay Railway, will receive funding of 147.6 million USD over the next two years.
The EIA report for Rail Baltica’s main route in Estonia has found that the planned route meets the necessary compliance requirements.
Network Rail is about to start vital maintenance and renewal work on the Glasgow city centre rail bridge which spans the A8 at Saltmarket.
Siemens Mobility has awarded Knorr-Bremse a contract to equip 15 high-speed Velaro Egypt EMUs with braking and entrance systems.
ÖBB Train Tech is investing 600 million EUR (608.99m USD) into the expansion and modernisation of 22 sites across Austria.
Construction has started on the new Portal North Bridge, which will improve service, reliability and capacity along the Northeast Corridor.
The IRFC conference will take place from 5–7 October 2022, to assess the Czech Republic's priorities for transport, especially rail.
Alstom has completed production of the first two of 152 cars for the next generation Marseille metro in France.
DB Engineering and Consulting will oversee the electrification of Uzbekistan’s 452-kilometre-long Bukhara-Urgench-Khiva railway line.
Alstom has transferred its Coradia Polyvalent platform, its French Reichshoffen production site and its TALENT 3 platform to CAF.
Egypt's first electric multiple unit (EMU), developed by CRRC Sifang has started trial operations in 10th of Ramadan City, Egypt.
Siemens Mobility has announced it will be unveiling its new open digital business platform – the Siemens Xcelerator – at InnoTrans 2022.
A new phase of testing has begun on the Murcia high speed line which is scheduled to be commissioned later this year.
Deutsche Bahn Deutsche Bahn has announced a return to profitable business for the first time since the start of the pandemic.
Network Rail has formally begun the legal consultation process with the necessary trade unions regarding its planned maintenance reforms.
BNSF has collaborated with Northwest Seaport Alliance (NWSA) to open a new intermodal rail hub at the Port of Tacoma, Washington.
CAF has begun dynamic track testing the hydrogen-powered demonstrator train developed for the FCH2Rail project.
Union Pacific has announced the rail industry’s largest ever investment (1 billion USD) in locomotive modernisation.
ATM has contracted Alstom to electrify the first phase of Barcelona's tram connection using APS technology.
Thales has been awarded a long-term services support contract to ensure the continued reliability of its CBTC signalling system in Singapore.
Alstom has started production of Metropolis trains for operation on Lines 8 – Diamond and 9 – Emerald in São Paulo, Brazil.
FTA has announced 1.75 billion USD in funding through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to improve accessibility at rail and subway stations.
Stadler has started production of the Class 93 locomotive fleet for Rail Operations UK at its plant in Valencia, Spain.
Ile-de-France Mobilités has announced that the electrification of the entire Ile-de-France rail network will be completed by 2030.
Dorothy, HS2’s 2000-tonne tunnel boring machine, has made its first breakthrough on the UK's high-speed rail line from London to Birmingham.
Transport for London (TfL) is trialling a cooling panel solution to reduce platform and tunnel temperatures at deep Tube stations.
PKP PLK has granted approval to Alstom to use the ELS-96 wheel detector system on railway lines in Poland.
CAF has been awarded two new contracts – in Athens and Seville – valued at more than 100 million EUR (102.39m USD).
Hitachi Rail has been chosen to install ATO over ETCS Level 2 technology across Queensland’s New Generation Rollingstock fleet.
Brightline has welcomed the delivery of two Siemens Mobility trains to operate on the upcoming Orlando extension line.
Construction has begun on the Rail Baltica bridge over the Neris river in Jonava. This will be the longest railway bridge in the Baltics.
This week saw the inauguration of the Madrid–Burgos high-speed line – an extension of the high-speed North line (LAV).
Metrolink has put its first refurbished train car into service in California to enhance passenger comfort and safety.
Caltrain’s first electric trainset has completed clearance testing along the corridor between Santa Clara and Tamien Stations in San Jose.
Network Rail is investing 30 million GBP into reducing platform congestion and improving accessibility at London Victoria station.
DB and the Federal Police have opened a security laboratory at Berlin Südkreuz station where they will test new safety tech and services.
The 6th Annual Ticketing Innovations Summit will take place in Berlin on 19-20 September. Ticketing, pricing and passenger experience.
Off the back of Europe’s latest record-breaking heatwave, Network Rail has commissioned a new resilience taskforce.
São Paulo’s Metro Line 4 has begun full operation using Siemens Mobility’s digital communications-based train control (CBTC) signalling.
ÖBB Rail Cargo Group has launched a new direct connection between Melnik in the Czech Republic and Wilhelmshaven, Germany.
The California High-Speed Rail Authority has released a Summer 2022 Construction Update to highlight progress on the high-speed rail project.
Adif Alta Velocidad (Adif) has put into service the first of the three sections that will make up the Madrid-Extremadura High-Speed Line.
The UK Government is more than trebling its investment into the Transpennine route upgrade (TRU) to nine billion GBP.
Deutsche Bahn (DB) has christened its 100th ICE 4 as part of the company's 10bn EUR investment in expanding its long-distance fleet.
Stadler has revealed some of the solutions it will have on show at InnoTrans 2022 this coming September in Berlin.
Passenger tram services have now begun on the Birmingham Westside Metro extension from Library to Edgbaston.
Alstom's recruiting 150 new software developers and testers for its Digital Products Engineering Centre of Competence in Katowice, Poland.
ÖBB Rail Cargo Group – the freight transport division of Austrian Federal Railways – has put its 11,000th smart freight cae on the rails.
SBB Cargo has chosen to lease 35 Vectron AC locomotives from Siemens Mobility. The vehicles will be delivered in 2024.
The UK rail industry lags behind that of aviation, roads and energy when it comes to maintenance of infrastructure and key assets.
Knorr-Bremse is looking to increase freight rail efficiency and flexibility by trialling an automated break testing system.
In a recent poll more than 2,000 respondents were asked their views on the recent rail strikes, pay and modernisation reforms.
Deutsche Bahn has announced a change of course, saying it will stop selling station buildings and focus on developing them instead.
The ORR, the safety regulator of Britain's railways, has published its annual health and safety report covering April 2021 to March 2022.
Rail freight industry leaders will convene in London on Wednesday 5th October 2022 for the 30th Rail Freight Group Conference.
Three new Trenitalia Frecciarossa services have begun this week providing direct connections between Rome’s Fiumicino Airport and Naples.
Alstom has won the contract to expand Rio de Janeiro’s VLT system. This will offer an integrated terminal connection to a new BRT system.
ÖBB and Deutsche Bahn (DB) have presented a modernised couchette car for ÖBB's Nightjet service in Austria, Germany and Switzerland.
SNCF Réseau has selected Hitachi Rail to develop and deploy wayside ERTMS Radio Block Centers (RBC) for the French railway network.
New electric overhead wires have been installed on a Yorkshire mainline for the first time in 25 years thanks to upgrade project.
Alstom’s Chinese joint venture has been awarded a contract to provide the train traction and auxiliary system for 258 Nanjing Metro cars.
Jonn Elledge considers some of the railway lines that were cut due to the Beeching Report that might reopen under Restoring Your Railway.
The Government of the Community of Madrid has authorised an investment of 500 million EUR to extend Line 11 of the Madrid Metro.
The California High-Speed Rail Authority and California Rail Builders have placed the final girders for the high-speed line in Kern County.
HS2 Ltd has contracted Laing O’Rourke to build the HS2 Interchange Station in Solihull at the heart of the high-speed rail network.
The Barking Riverside station is due to open to the public on 18 July, ahead of schedule, as it was originally expected to open this autumn.
Northern is using the same light detection and radar (LIDAR) scanning technology as NASA on its fleet to improve safety and efficiency.
Alstom and CRRC’s JV has been contracted to provide operation and maintenance services for Hong Kong International Airport's (HKIA) APM.
Swedish operator SJ AB has ordered 25 CAF Civity Nordic units in a contract valued at 300 million EUR (305.56m USD).
Thales has been chosen to deliver a new operations control centre and a fully automated depot for the Metro Vancouver SkyTrain.
The T13 tram has began operations on a 18.8 kilometre line between Saint-Cyr-l'École and Saint-Germain-en-Laye in France.
Alstom's industrial centre in Trápaga, Spain will manufacture the propulsion system for the new Zefiro Express high-speed trains in Sweden.
Tågåkeriet I Bergslagen AB (Tågab) has contracted Hitachi Rail to install ERTMS signalling technology on-board trains in Sweden and Norway.
Ireland's Minister for Transport has secured an agreement with the Cabinet to move forward with the MetroLink rail project in Dublin.
Adif is investing 4.3 million EUR into slope and trench reinforcement to improve the reliability of the metric gauge network in Biscay.
Madhya Pradesh Metro Rail Corporation has ordered 156 Movia metro cars from Alstom, which will be built at its facility in Savli, India.
SYSTRA has signed a contract to undertaken the preliminary and detailed design of the AlUla tramway in northwest Saudi Arabia.
Please fill in the contact form opposite. A member of the team will be in touch shortly.