ÖBB RCG and A1 reach 11,000th SmartCargo freight car milestone

ÖBB RCG and A1 have equipped the 11,000th freight wagon with SmartCargo, which offers comprehensive transport information.

ÖBB RCG SmartCargo

© Markus Weixelbaum

The ÖBB Rail Cargo Group (RCG), the freight transport division of ÖBB, have announced that the 11,000 mark has been reached for freight cars equipped with “SmartCargo”. In 2019, the RCG started the “SmartCargo” project in cooperation with A1 and A1 Digital. Special telematics on the RCG wagons enabled new services for customers, as well as significantly improved maintenance coordination. SmartCargo has position detection, motion sensors and impact detection. With the additional development of an IT platform, RCG, together with A1, is gradually bringing intelligent freight trains onto the rails throughout Europe. Now the target is around 12,000 freight cars.

“With SmartCargo, we are taking a big step towards the most modern rail logistics,” Clemens Först, Board Spokesman for RCG, said. “With the information basis that the 11,000 devices provide in the area of ​​position recognition and impact detection, among other things, numerous processes in international freight transport can be optimised, from customer information to the optimisation of deployment planning and maintenance. The 2020s will see a renaissance in rail freight, we are shaping that future.”

“We are heading full speed ahead into the future of intelligent freight transport,” Marcus Grausam, CEO of A1 Austria, said. “5G and IoT applications are revolutionising not only individual mobility but also goods mobility, this is how A1, together with RCG, is already making freight wagons intelligent. We look forward to implementing this project as a reliable partner and to supporting you with our expertise, hardware, software and IoT platform.”

More than 11,000 SmartCargo devices have already been installed on the RCG wagons, providing comprehensive information throughout the freight transport. Live data such as location, movement data and temperature are delivered to the Cumolocity platform in real time, where all information about the freight wagons and assets can be called up digitally in a clear and compact manner.

A position sensor provides the exact GPS coordinates of the car at predefined intervals. Changes in arrival times can thus be recognised and predicted. Another sensor ensures reliable movement detection independent of GPS reception, while the 3D acceleration sensor is used to detect impacts and monitor the transport of sensitive goods. In addition, the system can use geofencing to send an immediate message if predefined zones, such as national borders, are crossed.

The position data obtained from the SmartCargo devices help, in particular, to optimise maintenance in the direction of a mileage-based maintenance interval. In addition, damage to the freight wagon should be recognised quickly in order to proactively discuss improvements in the treatment of equipment with those who caused it. If there is no network coverage, the data is buffered and sent with the next network coverage. The battery of the SmartCargo Devices has an operating time of six years.