SNCF, the national French railway society, took delivery of a RIEGL VMX-450-RAIL intended for the sole purpose of railway mapping. The complete scanning platform is either installed onto a mounting rack in the rear of a wagon or right into the engine cart.
The main tasks of railway mapping include geo-referencing of railway infrastructure, clearance monitoring in order to detect natural obstacles like vegetation or determine infrastructural limits for special load transportation. Other applications of railway scanning include track and base terrain inspection as well as supervision and registration of changes in train station structures, such as thresholds between platform and wagon due to renovation works in train stations. All these different tasks serve the enhancement of railway safety.
The operation of a large railway network relies on meticulous organization–a single change of route or track can cause hours of delay for a large number of scheduled departures.
The RIEGL VMX-450-RAIL is a fully integrated, high-speed mobile laser scanning system, including a lifting frame for crane installation. Technet-rail’s SiRailScan is a 3D data-processing software solution, customized to the specific requirements of SNCF.
At a maximum effective measurement rate of 1.1 million measurements per second, resulting in up to 400 scan-lines per second, the RIEGL VMX-450-RAIL mobile mapping system enables the surveying of large stretches of railway tracks at high speeds, while delivering a dense point cloud containing billions of single measurement points. The effectiveness of the system allows a surveying train to pass between two regularly scheduled trains without causing delays.
SiRailScan is a technet-rail developed cross-platform software for the evaluation and analysis of 3D laser scan data. It can be used to simulate train passages, to determine and localize clearance gauge and to conduct target-actual comparisons of track geometries. It also determines the actual track geometry without any constraints, on the basis of point cloud data, allowing for track‘s actual position and height to be calculated in high precision manner.
The French railway route network is owned by RFF, an independent company of the group, and comprises about 58,000 km of route. The network can be considered particularly complex, therefore a continuous, even repeated monitoring and inspection is vital.