Railways and rail transportation are one of the key areas in which professional communication systems and devices are used the most.
In fact, professional communications systems constitute a fundamental support for the safety of goods and people, the margins of error are reduced and the need for coordination is high.
Today, the standard used and consolidated for operational communications is GSM-R, working on thousands of kilometres of railways around the world. The constantly evolving needs of rail transport are highlighting how this standard is not sufficient to manage the growing demand of data exchange between board and land. In fact, the forecasts predict that by 2030, it will no longer be used. It is for this reason that the standardization work by the European Telecommunications Standard Institute (ETSI) and the International Union of Railways (UIC) today is more fervent than ever.
The goal is to lead the railway world towards a new technological and innovative standard for its professional and operational communications: the Future Railway Mobile Communication System (FRMCS), developed on the basis of the provisions of 3GPP for Mission Critical Services on LTE and evolving on 5G, "Mission Critical Push To Talk" (MCPTT), "Mission Critical Data" (MCData) and "Mission Critical Video" (MCVideo) applied to the railway world.
The implementation of the FRMCS standard will allow the transfer of a greater amount of data, enabling new possibilities in terms of coordination between rail and public transport, smart maintenance and autonomous or assisted driving. In this way, the need for greater data traffic and information management typical of modern trains, increasingly digital and interconnected, will be met.
Towards the end of 2020, various test sessions of the solution were carried out, which proved to be reliable and interoperable in 95% of cases. It is a threshold that allows us to imagine an effective technological development of the standard in a short time, and Leonardo is one of its first implementers. The next event is the Plugtest session scheduled from 14 to 18 June 2021.
Leonardo participated in the event with its own solution, obtaining an excellent result in terms of coverage of the proposed tests, in terms of the number of tests performed and also in terms of inertness with other systems. Leonardo thus confirms itself as one of the players confirming himself among the vendors at the forefront of this technological trend.
The general results of the event confirmed that the technological developments are aligned with the roadmaps envisaged by the standardization bodies for FRMCS and Leonardo confirms its positioning among the first developers and, in perspective, among the first implementers of this new technology.
The journey towards the future of the railway world has begun, Leonardo is on board.
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