New measuring trolley brings more benefits
Railways, track and points are areas that are monitored continuously. They are regularly inspected and secured so that travellers can get from A to B. However, there are also many challenges associated with quality assurance,operation and maintenance due to the issue of accessibility for instance. Sund & Bælt has therefore invested in a new measuring trolley for points inspection.
Sund & Bælt’s facilities include 27 km of double track on the Storebælt link and 11 km across Øresund Landanlæg’s railway. These tracks involve 85 sets of points, which always have to be in excellent condition. This is achieved against the twin backgrounds of increasing demands for safety and the working environment during inspection, and the emergence of new technologies that contribute to the day-today operation.
The newly purchased measuring trolley is called Diamond-S and it can easily and safely handle inspections on the points and hence play a role in raising safety and the digitalisation of operational tasks.
Operations manager, Flemming Saxtorph, who was involved in purchasing the measuring trolley, says: “It was in June 2018 that we began to investigate the possibilities of using a measuring trolley to deploy when we need to inspect our infrastructure. When we saw a demonstration of the Diamond-S, we were in no doubt. It is easy to manoeuvre and simple to use.”
From paper to digital streamlining
With the new Diamond-S robot, it is possible, very accurately, to measure every control target in a points system every time it is inspected. The data collected from the points is recorded on an SD card.
Asset Management is now investigating how the collected data is stored and processed for the benefit of the future operation and maintenance.
“Before now, contractors had to write the data down on paper and hand it to a technical assistant, who would enter it digitally. This was then checked by an operator and, if approved, was archived. We are now looking at whether we can instead transfer the digital data from the SD card directly into our operation and maintenance system, MAXIMO,” says Project Manager, Finn Bormlund.
That would make it possible to analyse the data and identify patterns in how the points behave.
“The entering of data digitally and directly into MAXIMO gives us the tremendous ability to predict how the points will behave. It will help us with our long-term planning, for example, and means that the measuring trolley also plays a part in optimising our operations and maintenance,” says Finn Bormlund.
For the benefit of other operations organisations
It is a lengthy process when a measuring trolley such as the Diamond-S is to be purchased. Safety assessments have to be carried out. Setting out the process leading to our investment into the measuring trolley is beneficial to other operations organisations that have already shown an interest in borrowing it and testing it on their own facilities.
“We are happy with this, not least because it means that not only are we contributing to the digitalisation of operation and maintenance on our own infrastructure, but also we contribute to digitalisation for the benefit of the rest of the industry,” says Finn Bormlund.
The newly purchased measuring trolley was delivered at the end of February by the French manufacturer, Geismar.
You can see more pictures of the Diamond S demonstration from June