LTG Infra manages a 1790.6km, 1520mm-gauge network, with an additional 120.1km standard-gauge section, of which 9% is currently electrified. 

The RAKS system currently used by LTG Infra feature three subsystems: 

  • dynamic weighing, measuring weigh-in motion of each rail vehicle 
  • wheel impact load diagnostics to detect geometrical and running surface defects which have an adverse effect on contact forces between the wheel and the running rail, and 
  • hot box and hot wheel detection. 

The infrastructure manager also has two separate subsystems, including: 

  • a commercial inspection and rail Optical Character Recognition (OCR) solution to scan freight wagon numbers and visually assess the overall condition of rolling stock, and 
  • gauge monitors.  

LTG Infra says its existing subsystems are outdated, inefficient and do not meet the needs of freight operators and infrastructure safety requirements. The level of interoperability and centralised data management is also insufficient. 

The current gauge monitor uses a stretched wire which is severed if the gauge is breached, resulting in long restoration times to reset the system. The hot box and hot wheel detection system is also unable to differentiate between axle boxes with cassette bearings, which comprise 30% of rolling stock, from axle boxes with conventional roller bearings. As cassette bearings have a higher operating temperature, this regularly results in false alarms.  

Instead, LTG Infra is looking to develop a unified, geographically optimised and centrally managed Raks solution, which will consist of six diagnostics subsystems integrated together though a central management software (CMS) solution, which will improve reliability.  

This will include: 

  • dynamic weighing 
  • pantograph diagnostics 
  • commercial inspection and rail OCR solution 
  • hot box and hot wheel detection 
  • wheel impact load diagnostics, and 
  • gauge measurement. 

The CMS will gather the data and alarms as well as monitor the condition of the diagnostics equipment itself. The system will also provide a system map and the technical condition of each monitoring checkpoint.  

Following the completion of the market consultation and the development of the technical specifications for the six Raks subsystems and the CMS solution, LTG Infra plans to launch a procurement process in the beginning of 2021. The tender will be split into separate lots, with companies able to bid to supply some or all of the subsystems.  

LTG Infra plans to announce the winner of the tender in August 2021, with the project due to be completed by the end of 2023. 

A virtual supplier event will be held on November 19, with manufacturers able to submit information to the market consultation until November 25. 

For an interview with LTG CEO, Mr Mantas Bartuška, see the November issue of IRJ