Our research focuses on rail transport for the future:
energy efficient, powerful, noiseless.
Efficient and competitive rail transportation is crucial for achieving environmental and economic goals. To ensure the necessary efficiency and quality, infrastructures must be extended according to requirements and bottlenecks must be eliminated. Greater energy efficiency will further enhance the environmental benefits of rail transport. And new systemic approaches can help limit noise pollution, particularly caused by freight transport, to a level that ensures no adverse health effects for residents.
Our rail transport research supports this process with the following areas:
Planning an infrastructure that meets requirements and optimi-sing timetables requires an assessment of the capacity of indivi-dual lines or whole networks and timetable reliability. At DLR, we use simulation tools from a range of providers and based on different simulation methods for this purpose. This allows us to identify the impact of different operational and technical solutions on the operational quality of nodes, lines and networks. For high-capacity lines, particularly the increasing hinterland traffic volume to the North Sea ports, we develop and assess solutions for the short-term, medium-term and long-term elimination of line bottlenecks.
Factors that are becoming increasingly important include high track capacity and timetable reliability, as well as an energy-efficient mode of operation that helps reduce emissions and cut operating costs. In this context, DLR prepares recommendations for network operators concerning train movements and timetable design. Based on microscopic simulations of rail operations, dynamic operational tests are carried out and different scenarios for dispatching strategies and operations are assessed. DLR supports the railway industry and rail operators in the development of dri-ver assistance systems for energy-saving operation.
The noise resulting from rail transport has a negative effect on its positive environmental balance. This aspect must not stand in the way of the move towards rail transport. New ways have to be found of reducing noise efficiently through use of an integrated approach to the rail transport system. Our contribution consists particularly of operational solutions that help ensure technical measures can be used to optimum effect. DLR also has unrivalled expertise in the noise impact chain, namely the emission and distribution of sound, the effect of noise, and technical solutions for noise reduction.