Rail News

Autonomous Freight Train Completes Test Run in Australia

Rio Tinto has successfully completed the first fully autonomous rail journey at its iron ore operations in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, as the company progresses toward full commissioning of the AutoHaul® project in late 2018.

The nearly 100 kilometre pilot run was completed without a driver on board, making it the first fully autonomous heavy haul train journey ever completed in Australia.

Fully Autonomous Freight Train Journey

The journey was completed safely, being closely monitored in real-time by Rio Tinto teams and representatives of the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator, both on the ground and at the Operations Centre in Perth.

Related Post:  Vivarail Announces Partnership with Hydrogen Fuel Cell Specialists Arcola Energy

The successful pilot run from Wombat Junction to Paraburdoo is a significant step toward full commissioning of AutoHaul® in 2018 once all relevant safety and acceptance criteria have been met and regulatory approvals obtained.

Rio Tinto Iron Ore chief executive Chris Salisbury said:

This successful pilot run puts us firmly on track to meet our goal of operating the world’s first fully-autonomous heavy haul, long distance rail network, which will unlock significant safety and productivity benefits for the business.

Gains from AutoHaul® are already being realised including reduced variability and increased speed across the network, helping to reduce average cycle times.

Rio Tinto is proud to be a leader in innovation and autonomous technology in the global mining industry which is delivering long-term competitive advantages as we build the mines of the future. New roles are being created to manage our future operations and we are preparing our current workforce for new ways of working to ensure they remain part of our industry.”

AutoHaul® Project

The AutoHaul® project is focused on automating the trains that are essential to transporting the iron ore to our port facilities.

Trains started running in autonomous mode in the first quarter of 2017. Currently about 50 per cent of pooled fleet rail kilometres are completed in autonomous mode (with drivers on-board) and 90 percent of pooled fleet production tonnes are AutoHaul® enhanced.

Rio Tinto operates about 200 locomotives on more than 1,700 kilometres of track in the Pilbara, transporting ore from 16 mines to four port terminals.

Original article © Rio Tinto.

Related Post:  Russian Railways Launches New Rail Freight Service from Japan to Europe

FOR ALL THE LATEST INFORMATION, NEWS, IMAGES, VIDEOS AND ARTICLES ON ALL ASPECTS OF ROLLING STOCK, PLEASE CLICK HERE.

News categories

    23 May 2019
    Russian Railways Launches New Rail Freight Service from Japan to Europe
    15 May 2019
    SBB Cargo Launches Autocouplers
    06 Nov 2018
    UTLC ERA – Eurasian Rail Alliance Announces 2500th Train Milestone
    13 Feb 2018
    CRRC Debuts New Generation of Driverless Monorail Trains
    24 Jan 2018
    Baselland Transport Tests Collision Warning System for its Trams
    01 Nov 2017
    New Joint Facility to Develop Augmented Vehicle Technology
    03 Oct 2017
    DB Cargo UK Runs Trial Train as Part of Big Development Plans
    04 Aug 2017
    Rail Institute Compiles Report on Production of Light-Weight Bogies
    Subscribe
    Subscribe to Railway-News
    Get the latest contract alerts and Railway News emailed directly to your inbox.

    We respect your privacy and take protecting it seriously.

    Please tick to confirm you would like to receive emails we think may be of interest to you. We sometimes tailor the content you see to what we think you'll find interesting, and so monitor your interaction with our website and email content (find out more).