This article first appeared in the Railway-News magazine, Issue 1 2023.
Digitalisation of the rail industry has no end station.
It’s all about the journey, and the choices made along the way can make it a successful one. What matters now is getting on the right track towards the new era of operational excellence, technological innovation and endless fleet possibilities.
The global rail industry is well on the road to recovery after the pandemic. Sustainability is taking up residency at the forefront of society’s mind. Restoring the locomotive to its former glory therefore involves winning back trust and proving how safe, sustainable and fit for the future rail operations really are. After all, mobility is a very competitive market that will require big changes.
And the digitalisation of formerly manual processes is set to play a huge role in this resurgence. If rail is to unlock its maximum potential as an agent for decarbonised and socially inclusive mobility, operators and fleet owners must adopt future-proof technologies and make best use of the data that the industry provides in abundance.
Big data has already proven immensely beneficial in many industries and rail is no exception. It is a mystery then that 80 percent of data produced worldwide is either misused or simply not understood.
Even today, most maintenance schemes and underlying processes are centred around experience, historical observations and assumptions (not to mention a lot of paper!). These approaches are, however, time- consuming and don’t allow operators to get the most out of their components’ potential service life.
Terabytes of data are being generated from sensors embedded in industrial equipment, such as bearings in train bogie systems.
By basing decisions on accurate real-time condition data, rail operators can optimise maintenance scheduling and enjoy extended maintenance intervals – reducing both maintenance and life-cycle costs. The risk of experiencing unplanned stops and unwanted downtime is also significantly reduced through remote monitoring.
Railway-News magazine Issue 3 2022: SKF - How Digitalisation and Performance Improvements Can Help Us Move towards a More Sustainable Railway.
Railway-News magazine Issue 1, March 2022: SKF Railway - More Effective Maintenance of Sydney’s Railway with SKF Condition Monitoring.
SKF has manufactured new sealed, maintenance-free traction motor bearing units in close collaboration with the German Aerospace Center.
SKF and Televic GSP will to collaborate to drive development and innovation to advance condition-based maintenance capabilities for rolling stock operators.
SKF has developed a new design for railway freight axleboxes to help customers reduce weight and improve the performance of bogies.
SKF has developed a new hybrid deep groove ball bearing for high-speed applications such as rail industry traction motors.
SKF has announced its commitment to have a supply chain with net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
SKF has signed a long-term agreement with Stadler Rail to equip and service rolling stock for the Berlin underground (U-Bahn) in Germany.
GTR has installed a condition monitoring system developed by SKF to help avoid unplanned maintenance and associated disruption to services.
JSG Industrial Systems, SKF’s distributor of lubrication systems in Australia, has a long and storied history in the industrial development of the country.
IMx-Rail condition monitoring technology from SKF helps Barcelona Metro take a smarter approach to service quality.
SKF has developed a condition-based maintenance solution for rail that performs condition monitoring of both track and rolling stock.
SKF and Advanced Truck Systems (ATS) have agreed to collaborate in equipping the new 2-piece bogie system from ATS with high capacity...
Leading up to InnoTrans 2018 SKF and Siemens signed a partnership agreement that will focus on improving train operators’ asset management efficiencies. The par...
SKF extends passenger train wheelset maintenance intervals with the launch of its new SKF Passenger bearing 1.7 Mkm Cylindrical Roller bearing Unit (CRU). Launc...
The latest methods of bearing protection – including insulating coatings, hybrid bearings and sealed bearing units – help to extend maintenance intervals for tr...
Croatian rolling stock producer, Končar KEV has finalised an agreement with SKF for the supply of bogie components for its latest low-floor electric and...
The Moroccan rail operator, ONCF has placed an order with SKF for the delivery of 15,000 railway wheelset bearings over a period of...
Bearing design and integration expertise from SKF has helped Siemens and Bombardier to create a new generation of reliable, highly efficient passenger...
Replacing traditional maintenance regimes with condition-based monitoring will help rail operators to reduce the time they spend servicing their rolling...
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