Network Rail has awarded Fugro a contract for a RILA survey of a major part the rail network on the Western Route in England. The project will involve collection of nearly 1000 route miles of RILA data, providing asset and track position information that will be used by Network Rail to support a gauging programme and validation of track position. Fugro’s RILA survey will capture an estimated 97 % of all track and lineside structures to provide a holistic and accurate view of the Western network.
The unique RILA train-borne survey technology will be deployed in collaboration with the Network Rail Western Route team and Great Western Railway on passenger services operating throughout south-west England. To ensure survey work can continue during the Covid-19 outbreak, when passenger trains are reduced, some parts of the survey will be carried out with the RILA survey unit attached to a dedicated locomotive rather than an in-service passenger train. Fugro has worked closely with Network Rail and Freightliner to modify procedures and agree work methods that incorporate social distancing and safeguard all personnel.
Chris Stanley, Route Asset Data and Analysis Manager at Network Rail said: “We are delighted to be working with Fugro, whose innovative approach has revolutionised the way we receive information and data of railway infrastructure. RILA will help reduce the amount of time we need to work on the track, reducing delays for passengers and freight, while also improving the safety of the railway, as engineers spend less time on track carrying out survey works.”
The processed data will form a geodetic backbone that can be used for a range of route maintenance applications, including topographical survey extraction, determination of heights and staggers on sections of electrified routes, vegetation analysis, ballast profiling and ballast volume validation.
Survey on the routes will start at the end of May and includes the Great Western Mainline from London Paddington to Bristol, onwards to Penzance and into South Wales, linking with the RILA survey of the Welsh network performed by Fugro in 2019.