R&D Project „Automatisation & Digitalisation for the Railway System“

Rail is now widely regarded as the most-environmentally-friendly form of surface transport, and yet there is an urgent need to increase capacity, productivity as well as quality of the railway. These key challenges will be tackled by the project TARO ("Towards Automated Railway Operation").

Not only in terms of railway usage, Austria is a leading railway country in the European Union (no. 1 passenger-kilometres per capita, no. 2 freight transport, no. 1 night trains) but also regarding its railway industry (no. 5 global export, no. 1 in railway patents per capita). Given such an excellent starting position, taking railway to the next level with the help of automatisation and digitalisation technology should be self-evident. Hence, the submitted project proposal “TARO” focuses on 3 different areas:

  • Digital Twin development of digital twin vehicle with special regard to condition-based maintenance and predictive maintenance; development and simulation of digital twin infrastructure, as it is one of the fundamentals of automated train operation.
  • Process automatisation in freight transport, in particular in terms of automated coupling, as well as shunting and planning.
  • Automated railway solutions such as low-cost autonomous on-track side elements, low-cost train control systems for regional lines, as well as location of vehicles.

The estimated project results are expected to contribute to an increase in capacity, productivity and quality of the entire railway system. To guarantee that these results are achieved, a steering board consisting of national and international railway experts will be established.

The ministry of climate protection produced various clips about current R&D-projects in the railway sector, including TARO:

The project is funded by the “Austrian Federal Ministry of Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology (BMK)” and “The Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG)”:


Frau und Mann schütteln Hände

Partner description:

Here you can see an overview of the partners involved in the TARO project:

To the partner description

Project partner: