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Virtuosys and Angel Trains to demonstrate smart railway solution

System will be designed and certified for deployment on a UK rail passenger vehicle

Rail passengers increasingly expect reliable connectivity when travelling
Rail passengers increasingly expect reliable connectivity when travelling

Virtuosys, a provider of business-ready solutions at the network edge, and train leasing company Angel Trains, have secured grant funding from the UK’s Department for Transport (DfT) to demonstrate an edge computing solution for use on board trains.


The joint project, First of a Kind: Demonstrating Tomorrow’s Trains Today, will use the Virtuosys edge application platform to deliver a variety of applications for train operators and passengers.


The solution combines the installation of several Virtuosys edge servers to create a mesh network together with local storage and processing. The system will be designed and certified for deployment on a UK rail passenger vehicle, with an initial preloaded set of applications, targeted at the rail industry.


It will be able to operate with an intermittent backhaul connection to the internet, and applications will be able to provide useful functions during travel, even without internet access.


Virtuosys will use open interfaces to encourage application development by third parties and the fostering of a wider ecosystem to build upon this foundation of connectivity.


“Rail passengers increasingly expect access to quality and reliable connectivity when travelling, while at the same time Internet of Things technology can offer a wide range of exciting new tools for train staff. However, to date, poor wireless coverage for train lines has stifled innovation and created a communications bottleneck,” said Alan Jones, CEO of Virtuosys.


“Virtuosys’ solution allows train operators to deploy just a few devices per carriage which will create a self-managing network, sharing all storage and compute processing power. This will provide improved wireless coverage and a platform for a wide range of exciting services to improve the passenger experience and make life easier and safer on-board for train staff.”


According to Virtuosys, its edge application platform can be deployed in any environment – from Industrial Internet of Things, to smart cities, to retail. It also delivers a wide range of application services, from payment processing, to employee messaging.


Virtuosys will be demonstrating a range of vertical market applications, including smart transportation, running on the platform at Mobile World Congress 2018 (26 February – 1 March), in Hall 8, booth F31.


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