In what use cases can Radius help to improve railway safety? Article 2: Lineside cabinets

August 7, 2023

Radius is a Project that aims to approach the railway maintenance challenge. Currently, there is no optimal solution to inspect, monitor and maintain railway signalling assets. Radius will design, develop, test and demonstrate a complete monitoring and maintenance system using unmanned aerial systems (UAS). But what specific actions can Radius benefit? Through a series of articles, we will review the most relevant use cases. This one is focused on lineside cabinets.

Lineside cabinets are placed on the wayside of the main track, and they play a key role in controlling signalling equipment at trackside.

The use of drones for inspecting lineside cabinets may be carried out by using RGB camera, Infrared camera (NIR) and Thermal camera (LWIR). The use of these sensors can help to detect the correct status of the asset and also to arrange software updates of devices inside the cabinet.

What kind of information can we obtain?

  • Degradation of the cabinet, either by changes in colour, due to vandalism, weather or rust
  • Open doors or the total lack of them
  • Rusty key locks or absence of them
  • Changes in temperature or moisture inside the cabinet

Being able to detect these anomalies quickly means that they can be repaired without causing major problems. In addition, using a drone for these routine checks saves costs by avoiding the displacement of operators and increases safety.

Apart from lineside cabinets; there are other use cases that Benefit from Radius Project, such as: switches, level crossings and digital model of the railway environment.