Railway companies looking for new on-board electronic equipment or intelligent transportation systems should consider products that follow specific requirements in terms of operating temperature, shock and vibration resistance, EMC, and so on, in order to guarantee consistent and reliable performance in harsh and contaminated environments such as trains.
That is why on-board electronic devices like IoT gateways, edge computers and intelligent transportation systems should comply with the parameters defined by specific railway certifications. We will discuss three key standard requirements to meet the needs of today’s on-board railway and rolling stock applications.
The EN50155 certification defines the standard parameters for temperature, humidity, shock and vibration, EMC, power supply and others for electronic systems installed on trains. It includes railway standards from several EU countries such as Germany, France, Italy and UK. EN50155 also defines standards for system operating temperature. A very common range is -40 to +70°C, but to meet the requirements of heavy-duty and rugged embedded applications, the Tx temperature class is desirable. It is an extended operating temperature range that goes from -40 to +85°C and can be found on extremely rugged systems like Eurotech IoT Edge Gateway BoltGATE 20-25, designed for edge computing and IoT operations in railway applications.
The EN45545 “fire and smoke” certification includes some European standards such as the NF F16-101 (France), the UNI CEI 11170 (Italy), the DIN5510 (Germany) and the BS 6853 (UK). This certification regulates fire safety standards and defines the fire and smoke tests used to classify the different materials in the rolling stock industry. An example of EN 45545-certified product is the rugged Mobile Access Router BoltMAR 20-28 that is also EN50155 certified.
Another feature to take into account when it comes to railway embedded systems is Ingress Protection (IP). In a contaminated environment like trains, which is subject to dust and extreme weather events, a completely fanless embedded system that is IP65- or IP66-rated, is a must. The IP65 and IP66 ratings certify that the device is fully protected by dust ingress and water jets (particularly powerful in the case of the IP66 rating). Eurotech IP66-rated products are the already mentioned BoltMAR 20-28 and the BoltGATE 20-25, while the automatic passenger counter DynaPCN 10-20 is IP65-certified.
To conclude, it is easier for railway companies to enable intelligent transportation infrastructures with systems that are already certified and globally deployable- this considerably reduces time to market and ensures reliable and consistent performance, allowing the development of innovative and data-driven business models.