Coupling made easy
SBB Cargo is testing automatic centre buffer couplings to increase efficiency. A secure mechanical connection as well as the connection of the air conduit is automatically produced when the wagons are driven together. Employees no longer have to step between the wagons and there is therefore no longer any need to accomplish the difficult task of attaching the coupling hook and inserting the air hoses. To decouple the wagons they just need to operate a pull cable. Currently around 100 freight wagons are equipped with automatic centre buffer coupling for operation in combined traffic.
As tractor units, 25 mainline and shunting locomotives are equipped with a hybrid coupling, which is a combination of an automatic and a screw coupling. This means that wagons with both types of coupling can be attached to a locomotive. With the hybrid coupling, the automatic coupling can be folded upwards with the help of an electric winch and the screw coupling can then be used.
|Coupler head||Type 10 Scharfenberg|
|Mixed coupling system||Coupling with a standard coupling hook in accordance with EN 15566|
|Permissible force (Rp0,2)||Pressure||2000 kN|
|Permissible force for mixed coupling system (Rp0,2)||Traction||700 kN|
|Breaking load of mixed coupling system (Rp0,2)||1300 kN|
|Minimum type 10 coupling speed||0.6 km/h|
|Total weight||approx. 625 kg|
|of which the front coupling part||approx. 216 kg|
|Length||Pivot in the vehicle connection – front face of the Scharfenberg coupling||1000 ±5 mm|
Partners and suppliers
SBB Cargo is developing the technological solutions it requires in cooperation with partners from different sectors. VoithLink öffnet in neuem Fenster. supplies the automatic coupling.
Greater time saving due to train preparation using a tablet
Up until now, brake tests in rail freight traffic have involved the marshallers manually checking the brake blocks on each individual wagon. With the automatic brake test, the locomotive crew has the opportunity to carry out the brake check on the locomotive independently before departure and to check the proper functioning of the brakes on the display. The condition of the brake blocks will be reliably detected by the application and communicated to the locomotive (tablet).
This means that major time savings can be made when the train is being prepared, physical strain for employees can be reduced, safety while travelling can be improved and complete brake test documentation can be ensured.
How does the automatic brake test work exactly?
The WaggonTracker monitoring system gathers comprehensive information about the fleet. The relevant data is collected and communicated to the target group using an ingenious measuring sensor system and in-train communication.
The wheel boss generator guarantees an independent power supply. The long-range radio system means that you are also autonomous when transferring data. Data is transferred via an encrypted, secure connection. The additional measuring sensors are used to determine the condition of the brakes for the automatic brake test (such as C pressure and the brake rigging force). The data is transmitted to those responsible for brake tests via a radio system. The data is clearly presented on the tablet.
Partners and suppliers
SBB Cargo is working jointly with PJ MesstechnikLink öffnet in neuem Fenster. to develop the automatic brake test.
Radio remote control and collision warning system are the key components for one-person operation
When it comes to the local delivery of freight wagons these days, it is usually necessary to have at least one other employee alongside the shunter driver to take responsibility for monitoring the track. Built-in cameras and collision warning systems now make it possible to monitor the track on a mobile display unit and send a warning about any obstacles on the track. The employees also shunt the freight wagons by means of remote control, without having to run to the front of the shunting operation each time. The shunting specialist therefore controls the composition in both directions of travel.
As a result, communication difficulties previously experienced are reduced and reaction speeds are increased. Both of these applications, together with automatic coupling and the automatic brake test, form the key foundation for the future introduction of one-person operation by SBB Cargo.
Collision warning system core technologies:
- Obstacle detection using environment sensors with radar and camera
- Camera imaging system
- Radio remote control with video
Partner and supplier
Low-noise, light, long distance, logistics-capable and life-cycle cost-oriented
Market changes, such as the fast-paced innovation on the roads or rising customer demands, are posing major challenges for European rail freight companies. But opportunities opened up by new technology offer great potential for developing the efficiency of freight services.
The 5L next is made up of two joint components: a standardised substructure and a modular configurable superstructure. Innovative freight wagons are key to being able to take full advantage of the IoT (Internet of Things) and automation. As part of the 5L initiative, SBB Cargo, Hupac, VTG and the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) as well as a large number of suppliers and industry partners are developing the next generation of freight wagons.
The next generation is being completely redesigned. The chassis, for example, is considerably lighter than conventional flat wagons. The middle segment is not welded, but is instead riveted just like the production methods from the lorry sector. SBB Cargo’s extensive modernisation steps offer major benefits for customers, wagon keepers and infrastructure.
Further information on the 5L next
||Conventional freight wagons (without superstructure)||5L next (without superstructure)|
|Weight||20 tonnes||10 tonnes|
|Brakes||Shoe brakes (block brakes)||Low-noise disc brakes|
|Wheel sets||Classic wheel set without sound absorber||Low maintenance wheel set with sound absorber|
|Bogie||Rigid axles||Radially adjustable bogie|
Partners and suppliers
SBB Cargo launched this project to develop an innovative train model with the support of the Technical Innovation Circle for Rail Freight Transport (TIS), VTG, Hupac and the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN)Link öffnet in neuem Fenster., as well as more than a dozen independent manufacturers.