German state train operator Deutsche Bahn has signed a three-year cooperation agreement with Knorr-Bremse covering the use and analysis of train-operating and vehicle-subsystem data, utilising ‘big data’ insights to enhance the condition-based maintenance of its vehicle fleets.
Deutsche Bahn is aiming to use the data to increase vehicle availability and reduce maintenance costs. Knorr-Bremse RailServices will focus on enhancing its digital and value-added services, which include condition monitoring of onboard vehicle systems, wear prediction, and the corresponding software support.
The agreement provides for the use of existing vehicle and system data, and for the collection of additional data in the future, to deliver the desired maintenance improvements.
Dr Nicolas Lange, chairman of Knorr-Bremse Rail Vehicle Systems, explained: “In the context of the ongoing digitalisation of the rail sector, data-based products and services have huge potential to add value for customers and enable further operational optimisation of the overall rail system.
“As a system supplier, we are continuously expanding our portfolio in this important strategic area and are delighted to have signed an agreement on the intelligent use of vehicle data with our partners at Deutsche Bahn.”
The aim of the partnership is to make it possible to call rail vehicles into the workshop at the precise time when a system or component requires maintenance. The key to this is the condition-based maintenance system envisioned by the cooperation agreement, which will enable even more targeted and needs-based maintenance cycle planning. It also has the potential to reduce train downtime by minimising the time that vehicles spend in the workshop.