With Gate4Rail an outstanding demonstration of the future zero-on-field-test GNSS platform

The integration of satellite positioning into the ERTMS platform – one of the Shift2Rail innovations – requires a prior verification and validation of the GNSS performance in operational scenarios implying numerous and time consuming field tests. To overcome this constraint, Shift2Rail has selected the GATE4Rail project – coordinated by Radiolabs – backed by its original idea to create a Digital Twin of the system under test for realizing a virtualized simulation tool connecting individual simulation blocks made available by research institutions, laboratory, and industries independently from their location.  This virtualized test bed allows to simulating operative scenarios that are very difficult to reproduce on field – or quite impossible to record – as in case of very rare fault events in challenging environmental conditions. The goal is to assess the safety level of a GNSS-based ERTMS solution with a far larger data set respect to relying exclusively on field tests, pursuing a zero-on-field test process that is a priority of Shift2Rail.

At a public event organised by UNIFE on February 22nd with more than 50 experts – including stakeholders from the rail industry, the aerospace sector and various research centres the partners of GATE4Rail have presented the results of the project, culminating with a real demonstration in the ERTMS laboratory of CEDEX, on two operational railways lines, respectively in Italy and Spain.

The demonstration gave evidence of the novel GATE4Rail virtual infrastructure performance and growth capabilities, proving that the integration of different modules from the ERTMS and the GNSS ecosystems is a first achievement towards a zero-on-site testing.

The methods and tools for building an automated GNSS-ERTMS testing and the associated set of requirements were verified by Bureau Veritas (Independent Notify Body) according to the CENELEC European standard. RFI – one of the GATE4Rail team – has taken this opportunity to disclose their ERTMS deployment plan envisioning the use of the GATE4Rail outcomes for the ERTMS laboratory in Roma.     GATE4Rail website