Omnicom brings home the Rail Innovation Prize Fund

Omnicom Engineering has been awarded the 2015 Future Railway Innovation Award for its proposed RailNavigator product, a low cost advanced positioning system for rail.

The award was made on behalf of the GB rail sector by RSSB and the Railway Industry Association (RIA).

Three finalists made their presentations to a panel of industry judges and fielded questions at RIA’s Technology and Innovation Conference, held in Leamington Spa on the 25th and 26th March.

Chief Executive, Stirling Kimkeran, took the podium to demonstrate to delegates how the RailNavigator system will form the basis of a wide range of services delivering benefits to passengers, infrastructure owners, suppliers of service based measuring systems and operators.

At the end of the two day conference, Omnicom was announced as the winner and duly presented with the winner’s cheque for £10,000 by Clare Moriarty, Director General Rail Executive at the Department of Transport, and David Clarke, Director of Innovation at RSSB. The initial award is in recognition of the work done to get to this stage with access to further funding of up to £300,000 in total being released as the project develops.

Funded by RSSB as part of the Future Railway programme, the RIA/Future Railway Award supports the development of innovative products or services for the railway and is open to UK registered companies of any size, as individual applicants or in collaboration with educational institutions or similar. Previous winners include Brecknell, Willis & Co., Interfleet Technology, Park Signalling & Frazer Nash and URS Infrastructure & Environment UK Limited.

RailNavigator is proposed as a low cost advanced positioning system for rail which will provide real time vehicle positioning and associated information. Initially suitable for passenger information systems, logging driving characteristics and taking ride quality measurements; it could also be used to drive other functions that rely on accurate train position determination. Examples include, automated train door opening, temporary block movements or ETCS. There continues to be a demand for low cost position systems as demonstrated in the recent Shift2Rail call, The Digital Railway Strategy and the ‘Compass’ project, as part of the Rail Technical Strategy. The availability of a low cost positioning system that can be used on passenger trains will also help facilitate the move to service train based infrastructure monitoring.

For nearly two decades, Omnicom has pioneered and delivered innovative solutions to the rail industry. Many of these solutions have required Omnicom to integrate a number of commercially available off-the-shelf (COTS) components to produce products that can be used by the transport sector to meet requirements for monitoring, inspecting and surveying. To deliver the data from these systems, such that it can easily be used for business decision making, Omnicom has also developed a number of software products including desktop applications, databases and web services.

PDF File Further Reading:
Click to download RIA’s press release on our win.