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pdf.png 2006 - Nov - Welsby - ARTC New Communications System

Size 908.38 KB
pdf.png 2006 - Nov - Ness - A Short History of Adelaide Railyard ( 150 Years in 20 Minutes )

David Ness MIEAust, MIRSE

Connell Wagner

When first asked if I would be prepared to present a paper for the Adelaide IRSE I was somewhat mystified as to what I would present about. Although I have had a considerable association with the Adelaide urban network over the last 20 years it has, to be honest, some years since that involvement has involved practical activity that I consider may be of professional or technical interest to the membership of the IRSE.

After a little thought however I realised how little I knew of the history of the Adelaide network, or indeed the history of any of Australia's rail networks, and decided that as many readers are likely to be in the same position as myself, ie. railway professionals unfamiliar with the history of the assets they work with daily, that a short summary of a selection of historic highlights pertaining to the Adelaide system would be as good a topic as any. Furthermore, and in order to tie in with the theme of this conference, I have elected to concentrate on the history of Adelaide Station and Yard itself rather than the entirety of the network.

Size 584.53 KB
pdf.png 2006 - Nov - McDonald - Controlling The Alice Springs to Darwing Railway - A Case Study in Appropriate Technology

Wayne McDonald BE (Elec) FIRSE

Westinghouse Rail Systems Australia

The Alice Springs-Darwin Railway is the longest Australian rail construction undertaken in over 100 years. Trains travelling over its 1,420 km join with the existing Alice Springs-Tarcoola railway to provide a land bridge between the port of Darwin and the southern capital cities.

This paper describes the peculiar requirements for the signalling system to control the new (Alice Springs-Darwin) and existing (Tarcoola-Alice Springs) railways that both transverse long, sparse distances. Trains are controlled for the whole route from an Adelaide based computer assisted train order system compliant with the (Australian) Code of Practice of the Defined Interstate Rail Network and utilising electronic equivalents of the existing paper forms all linked to track overview display. Train pass and cross at autonomous, train-operated passing loops fitted with self restoring points interlocked over a vital end to end radio telemetry link.

The design of this signalling system is predicated on an expanding traffic volume from an initial low base and so the system has to both fulfil prime cost targets and provide expansion and automation capabilities to support the growing traffic without increasing Signaller and Driver loading. Foreshadowed enhancements are described.

ADrail required minimal trackside equipment that must operate ultra reliably in a harsh and remote environment where maintenance can be many hours away. Trackside communications infrastructure is almost non existent and trains must utilise satelite communications with the control centre or short range local radio.

Size 365.62 KB
pdf.png 2006 - Nov - Furniss - The In Cab Activated Points System Enhancement for Trans Australia Railway

Paul Furniss BEng (Hons) CEng MIET

Australian Rail Track Corporation

The In Cab Activated Points System is a system which provides the Train Crews with a window of opportunity when approaching a crossing location to operate the points reverse in a controlled manner to allow the train to enter the crossing loop without the need to stop.

A self restoring points system exists on the Trans Australia Railway between Port Augusta and Kalgoorlie which provided considerable benefits at forty four crossing loops when it was introduced in 2000 by ARTC. The In Cab Activated Points System is an enhancement to the self restoring system so that a train movement into a crossing loop is as efficient as practicable.

This paper will review and describe the system components that have been used to provide the function of remotely reversing the points at the crossing locations across the Nullabor from within the locomotive cabs. The components to be described are the ground based systems at the loop end equipment huts, an air interface, and the train borne locomotive systems. A current project status is also provided.

Size 654.21 KB
pdf.png 2006 - Nov - Foley - Matching Technology and Operational Requirements, The Safety Perspective

Peter Foley B App Sci (Mar Eng), BE (Mech), Grad Dip Bus Mgt (Tech Mgt)

Australian Transport Safety Bureau

This paper outlines the development of the 'safety investigation', the genesis of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau and its accident investigation methodology with reference to its systemic focus on the contribution of human factors issues, in particular, the man/machine interface.

Size 65.87 KB
pdf.png 2006 - Nov - Erdos - The Trans Adelaide CTC Replacement Project

George D Erdos B. Tech Elec, FIEAust, CPEng, FIRSE, FPWI, MIIE


This paper is the final in a series to be made to the IRSE regarding TransAdelaide's Centralised Train Control (CTC) replacement project. In this paper I will review the project from inception through to commissioning. The paper is not intended to embrace the technical aspects of the project which will be covered by the principal contractor, United Group Infrastructure. However, in the paper I will provide a light hearted overview of some of phases of the project including definition, deliverables, elements of the implementation/commissioning and training as used to provide the operational system. Finally we will look at some of the lessons learned.

Size 457.16 KB
pdf.png 2006 - Nov - 3 Hickson, Dimos - TransAdelaide CTC and PI System Upgrade

Size 1.4 MB
pdf.png 2006 - March - Traynor - Safe Platforms for the Integrated Control of Railways

Owen Traynor Technical Director,

Westinghouse Rail Systems Australia

Much of the material upon which the following discussions and descriptions are based has been produced and developed by the dedicated and talented engineers at Westinghouse Rail Systems Australia. Special thanks go to Brenton Atchison, Alex Boden and Shashi Anantharamaiah.

Size 80.36 KB
pdf.png 2006 - March - Spicer - Fact Sheet No. 3: Australian Level Crossing Assessment Model (ALCAM)l

Size 2 MB
pdf.png 2006 - March - Robinson - Common Law Safety Cases

Richard M Robinson, BE BA FIEAust MSFPE

Director, R2A Pty Ltd

statutory, regulatory and common law obligations have been met. It is primarily a demonstration that all sensible practicable precautions are in place.

This means that target risk levels are not strictly relevant. Legally at least, if a business or activity is prohibitively 'dangerous' then it must be stopped. Otherwise the common law principle, the balance of the significance of the risk versus the effort required to reduce it, applies. As such, 'risk' is only invoked to test the value of the possible precautions, rather than the significance of the 'hazard'

Size 392.29 KB
pdf.png 2006 - March - Jordan - A Trial of a Low Cost Level Crossing Warning Device

Phillip Jordan BE (Civil), M Eng Sc. – Principal

Consultant, Road Safety International; formerly Principal Road Safety Engineer, VicRoads.

The use of red flashing lights (signals) and boom barriers at rail crossings has been a widely accepted practice in Australia since the 1920's. These devices have an excellent safety record, but are expensive to install.

The State of Victoria now has an annual budget of $6 million for upgrading level crossings from passive to active control. In the 1990's this figure was a low as $600,000. That figure allowed just 4 or 5 crossings to be upgraded from passive to active each year. The present budget results in some 15 road crossings and a handful of pedestrian crossings being upgraded annually. But even now, with some 1500 passive level crossings in the State, it will take the best part of another century to provide active level crossing protection at all sites. Of course, many of these 1500 sites are very low volume crossings, and the use of large amounts of public money at such crossings may well be difficult to justify.

This situation caused a group of road and rail engineers to investigate the possibilities of reducing the cost of level crossing protection through the use of lower cost (but still 100% reliable) detection devices and warning signals. Their intention was not to replace the existing active device with a new low cost option, but rather to have an additional device which could be used to improve the conspicuity of selected passive crossings at the time that a train was in the vicinity.

After an international literature search, five detection units were submitted to a Stage 1 trial on a disused rail line in suburban Melbourne. The most reliable detector out of these five was then further tested during Stage 2 of the trial on a railway line near Ballarat in western Victoria. Finally, as Stage 3 of this trial, the prototype was installed at a passive level crossing at Creswick in western Victoria and monitored in real life situations.

This paper presents the history of this trial, together with some of the results of the trial, through the eyes of a road safety engineer. It outlines the key decisions which were made during the nine year long study and provides some guidance and advice for others who may be thinking of a similar trial. The paper details the decisions which lead to the design of the warning signal used to alert motor vehicle drivers of the presence of a train.

The outcome of the trial to date is very encouraging - VicRoads and Vic Track are now just months away from having a low cost level crossing warning device available for use on low volume roads in rural areas. Its final cost will be in the order of one fifth of the cost of conventional active control.

Size 59.32 KB
pdf.png 2006 - March - Barker - Using Independent Railway Safety Investigations to Help Manage Risk

Phillip Barker, MIRO, Dip TSI.

Senior Transport Safety Investigator Australian Transport Safety Bureau


A greater understanding of safety related occurrences can assist railway operators and railway managers to prioritise resources to manage risk. Before you can manage a hazard it helps to understand how accidents and incidents are occurring. Implementation of corrective action, policy development and planning comes from a process of risk assessment. Given that occurrences pose a safety and financial risk to railway operators and managers, a program of analysis to look at the range of contributing factors, should form part of any safety management system. This should lead to greater safety and potential gains in efficiency. This paper will briefly outline the general process adopted by the ATSB to analyse occurrences. The status of the National Rail Occurrence Database will also be outlined.

Size 427.49 KB
pdf.png 2006 - July - Blakeley - Smith - Appreciation and Testing Communications Circuits ( For Signalling Engineers )

Andrew Blakeley-Smith BSc (Hons) MIEAust MIRSE

Andrew Blakeley-Smith & Associates

Railway signalling technology has evolved over the years from the primary discipline of the mechanical engineer to the electrical engineer to the IT/computer science engineer. The design philosophy and hardware underlying analogue communications links is very familiar to those with, or exposed to, a telephony background but does not seem to have been adequately covered in most electrical engineering courses.

There are still many analogue links forming essential, and even vital, components of signalling systems. Some of these links, in service for many years, from the author's experience, have never been tested and commissioned properly and fail when relatively minor configuration changes are made. System testing is often prolonged because new communications bearers are not tested systematically. Effort is then mistakenly put into reconfiguration of the equipment at the ends of the bearer, perhaps because the digital interface is better understood.

This paper covers some telephony history and basic principles, some elementary transmission line theory that may have been forgotten (or passed over as no longer relevant or a black art) and discusses, from experience, some practical testing strategies that do not need a truck full of expensive and difficult to drive test equipment.

Size 484.23 KB
pdf.png 2006 - July - Allison - Brakes and Signalling

Warwick Allison Chief Engineer Signals


One of the main elements of signalling is to ensure sufficient warning is given to drivers of where they need to stop, or reduce speed such as for a turnout. Clearly there needs to be a suitable braking distance between this warning and the stop signal or speed restriction.

The Central Queensland University post graduate course in Railway Signalling provides new signal engineers with a comprehensive, accelerated way to skill up in this specialised discipline.

This paper is presented around the course elements for train braking and signalling CPD 3, Signalling the layout Week 1, Topic 2 and 3, and Week 2 Topic 1 and expands on some of the practicalities and issues presented by train braking and its effect on signalling design and system capacity.


Size 385.86 KB
pdf.png 2006 - July - 7 Everist - Telemetry System Upgrade NSW North Coast CTC

Size 2.52 MB
pdf.png 2006 - July - 5 Warhurst Keys - Epping Chatswood Rail Link Radio System

Size 81.27 KB
pdf.png 2006 - July - 2 Caldwell - Generation of Optimised Automatic Signal

Size 123.47 KB
pdf.png 2006 - July - Sundareswaran - VPI Application with Radio Links

Kaniyur Sundareswaran B.S. {Engg.Tech.}, M.S. {Soft. Sys.}, C.Eng., MIET, MIRSE

United Group Infrastructure

United Group Infrastructure have commissioned an ALSTOM Vital Processor Interlocking (VPI) system using radio links for transmission of vital signalling information, between two VPIs, each installed at either end of the Kinalung crossing loop, on the Parkes to Broken Hill line.

This project is part of a contract with Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) for extending the crossing loops at Kinalung and Matakana, each crossing loop being extended to 1850 metres in length.

This paper describes the VPI architecture employed in Kinalung and its interfaces to the radio link. It explains the basic components of a VPI system and its configuration for the Kinalung crossing loop.

The paper also covers the type of radio system used for this communication, its configuration parameters and explores how a non-vital radio system could be used to communicate safely.

Size 3.1 MB
pdf.png 2006 - July - Josh - NSW Train Control Consolidation


Australian Rail Track Corporation

The Australian Rail Track Corporation has embarked on a significant programme of train control consolidation and signal box closures throughout New South Wales. Ultimately two Network Control Centres will control rail traffic over the majority of the New South Wales rail network.

Train control consolidation is underway during a time of significant organisational and cultural change as the New South Wales rail system evolves from a government entity to business and customer focussed corporation which can be considered both an advantage and a major hurdle simultaneously.

The Train Control Consolidation Project is comprised of a number of minor and major resignalling works to replace mechanical and hybrid interlockings and signalling systems to allow for their remote control from PC based train control systems. Additionally ARTC has a number of complimentary projects within its' various corridor strategies which also need to be considered.

Size 687.59 KB
pdf.png 2005 - October - Braban and Yelloz - Resignalling and Interoperability

Dr Corinne Braban, IRSE Associate Member and Dr Gérard Yelloz, FIRSE

Siemens Transportation Systems, France


In the past few years, on a worldwide basis, the subject of resignalling of existing networks has emerged. The reasons are various, such as how to deal with technology obsolescence, transport capacity upgrades, and with overall service quality improvements due to modern operation practices. Simultaneously, there was the additional issue of getting suppliers to commit to long-term after-sales services and procurement in a rapidly changing technological world. This last point has made railway transport companies realise the need to push for multi vendors’ policy or for interoperable systems solution.

This paper will present the various issues surrounding the need of resignalling and interoperability. The different methods of implementation strategy (Hong Kong, Paris, New York, etc) will be presented too, as well as the actual status of their progress.

In order to cover the above issues, in the medium term, a program called UGTMS – Urban Guided Transport Management System - and followed by MODURBAN – Modular Urban Guided Rail System - was launched, thanks to the European Rail Community. Various mass transit corporations, suppliers, universities and research centres are members of this program. The objective is to define and specify standards and agreed on specifications, in particular, common architecture specification including interfaces between interchangeable equipment. The content and status of this project will be presented.

Size 191.72 KB

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