Safer, More Efficient British Railways with Data-Driven Operations

Safer, More Efficient British Railways with Data-Driven Operations

Ingrid Hesser

Ingrid Hesser,

Cognizant has been awarded a five-year contract to design, build and operate digital capabilities based on artificial intelligence, internet of things, data analytics, and mobility technologies that will help improve Network Rail’s asset management and overall performance.

Network Rail, Britain’s principal rail infrastructure owner, has selected Cognizant to lead a new consortium tasked with delivering data-driven operations as part of a comprehensive Intelligent Infrastructure transformation program. In partnership with rail specialists Amey Consulting and Arup, Cognizant will develop and apply enhanced data collection and analytics to Network Rail’s more than 12,000 connected assets, such as track circuits, signal power supplies, and switches. 

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The new capabilities will equip Network Rail with real-time condition monitoring and data-driven insights, aided by artificial intelligence, to improve decision-making and asset management. Network Rail expects to lower costs and enhance safety by predicting and preventing maintenance issues, prioritizing work streams and minimizing the time rail workers spend on the tracks. Passengers and freight customers are expected to experience fewer travel disruptions. 

Cognizant’s partnership with Network Rail stretches from 2013, and the new game-changing digital solutions is a further step in making Britain’s railways more efficient, safe, and reliable. Trains are really on Cognizant’s agenda; in the Nordics a series of innovative case-cracking workshops in collaboration with Swedish train operator SJ and Stockholm School of Economics was recently performed. The cross-functional teams consisted of tech experts and students that collaborated in a structured manner with the mission to change people’s travelling habits. The winners presented a new tech-enabled booking system and a green loyalty partner network. 

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