Railcomplete at InnoTrans 2022

The benefits of RailCOMPLETE (R)

RailCOMPLETE® is an AutoCAD® plug-in for planning railway systems with a high level of detail. We combine the planning of control and safety technology, overhead lines, track systems, cable ducts, low-voltage systems and earthing in one tool. Since 2015, we have been working tirelessly and passionately to revolutionise the world of planning tools and deliver real added value to our customers. With RailCOMPLETE, we want to make our contribution to the modernisation of the rail industry, digital planning processes and the achievement of uniform standards in the European rail market.

We have come a long way in recent years and have continuously improved and expanded RailCOMPLETE. In the meantime, the tool has a range of functions that partially automate the planning process for control and safety technology and overhead contact line systems.

This has not gone undetected in the railway industry: Our first customer was the engineering service provider Norconsult AS in Norway, which is still Railcomplete AS’ largest customer. Since then, the companies Sweco and Multiconsult have joined. These three companies are leaders in overhead contact line planning in Norway. Norconsult is also a planning office in the field of control and safety technology for mainline railway.

Cooperations with SNCF, Deutsche Bahn and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. have already demonstrated the benefits of RailCOMPLETE far beyond the Norwegian borders.

InnoTrans is the world’s largest trade fair for transport technology. Every two years, Berlin becomes the meeting place for the industry to present innovations, to explore new trends and to exchange ideas.

Over the past few years, RailCOMPLETE has been continuously expanded and improved in terms of function, scope and user experience. We will present the results of our work and the possibilities in planning processes using RailCOMPLETE at two demo stands.

We will give an introduction to the tool and show how RailCOMPLETE can save time in the planning process, minimise errors and save personnel resources on the basis of concrete use cases.

RailCOMPLETE® with EULYNX DataPrep – looking deeper

EULYNX DataPrep (DP) is an abstract data model whose purpose is to enable text-only data exchange between stakeholders in the railway signalling industry. Its UML model contains the constructs needed to describe the main European signalling systems in a common, formal way. It contains modelling mechanisms for virtually every aspect of existing and future interlocking types and their trackside physical components.

Numerable components from adjacent disciplines, notably track and to some extent the overhead catenary system, have been modelled. The EULYNX DP model has been expressed formally as XML Schema Definitions, a set of XSD files. The UML is also converted and made available as an Object Oriented code library that software builders can plug into their product. Each software supplier is free to incorporate this library in their software product, be it an authoring tool, a data viewer or a validation tool.

The existence of a well-documented and managed code library (DLL) ensures that two different software suppliers will understand and express concepts in the same way during data exchange. The depth of modelling is adequate for expressing interlocking requirements and electrical connections, depending on the tool and the scope. EULYNX DP is based on RSM, the Railway System Model brought forward by UIC. The RSM models a very basic level where linear placement (kilometer, lateral and vertical offset) as well as direct positions (coordinates) and topology (nodes and edges) are available concepts for software designers to use.

EULYNX DP is not a storage format for authoring tools, partly because EULYNX DP does not represent graphical symbols for the various equipment types, or tool-dependent information such as CAD layers. A EULYNX DP file is more like a snapshot – a photograph – of a complex system in a given state. On the other extreme, an authoring tool such as RailCOMPLETE stores not only multiple states of the modelled system, but also automation methods for creating and manipulating data inside the model, much in the same way that an Excel™ spreadsheet contains VBA code to automate tasks. An authoring tool must also take care of all the nitty-gritty information needed for the user to interact with the data model, i.e., an efficient user interface as well as import/export functions towards Excel™, LandXML™, railML™ and other relevant exchange formats.

This RailCOMPLETE release provides an import and an export script for the object types contained in DNA for which a data exhange need with EULYNX DP is anticipated. When RailCOMPLETE reads a EULYNX DP file, the import scripts for the various EULYNX DP object types will control how RailCOMPLETE creates and configures corresponding national railway objects, according to the railway administration’s DNA. When RailCOMPLETE exports a national design to the EULYNX DP format, it does so by using an export script for each relevant DNA object type to translate from its RailCOMPLETE formulation to its EULYNX DP formulation.

We recommend our readers to consult the well-illustrated documentation on the EULYNX DataPrep web pages.

RailCOMPLETE® launches version 2022.2: Improved 3D functionality and user experience

Since 2015, we at Railcomplete AS have been working tirelessly to make our vision for planning tools in the railway market come true: all relevant planning projects around the railway line, united in one tool. With our version update 2022.2 we have come one step closer to this goal.

The history of RailCOMPLETE is characterised by continuous improvements and extensions to our software – the tool already has a large number of functions that partially automate the planning process for control and safety technology and catenary systems. With the version update 2022.2, we are again improving the user experience and expanding our functions: Large models are accelerated and we introduce a new interface for the 3D representation of point objects and alignment objects.

3D graphics can be broken down into smaller parts and then parametrically reassembled to display an object in 3D.

An example of how this can look is shown below with a light pole, which at the same time provides a glimpse of the upcoming NO-BN-DNA-2022.a update:

Figure 1: Light pole expressed as 11 parametrically controlled parts

One patch – many possibilities

With RC version 2022.2, the possibilities for the users become more transparent and at the same time considerably expanded. In the new version, only those commands are displayed that are available for the respective license level of the user.

We have also added advanced settings for OffsetProfiles and a profile offset that moves the PVIs orthogonally to the source.

RailCOMPLETE 2022.2 and a detailed list of all function changes can be downloaded from www.railcomplete.com/rcdl.

Automated Model Checks in RailCOMPLETE objects

Tired of spending countless hours of checking your railway drawings?

We are proud to announce that RailCOMPLETE objects now compute their own local model checks. Each time an object is used, refreshed or inspected, its model checks are re-evaluated. Model checking automates the tedious process of finding small and large inconsistencies in your model, or between your model and other discipline’s models.

In the example below (*) we have defined Error, Warning and OK distance intervals between neighboring balises in the up and down directions measured along the track. We have also introduced distance checks against balises in flyover tracks or in adjacent tracks. Looking for all objects with a problem is easily done from the Object Manager, in order to review and fix your model before delivery.

(*) ATC for the Bane NOR national rail administration, Norway.

The Manage Properties window shows this…

…when the AutoCAD modelspace shows this: