Ericsson and Bombardier have completed trials of LTE networks for railway solutions at simulated speeds of up to 200 kilometers per hour with the goal of supporting communications-based train control (CBTC), closed-circuit television (CCTV), voice, platform information, advertising and Wi-Fi for passengers, and other such applications.
The companies said LTE could potentially be employed for CBTC, which uses high-resolution location determination and high-capacity data communications - such as those enabled by LTE networks - to support automatic train protection, operation and supervision functions. In the CBTC tests, the LTE networks achieved uplink and downlink latencies far below the threshold of 100 milliseconds and packet losses approaching zero (anything less than 0.5% was considered a pass mark). Quality of Service capabilities built into Ericsson's equipment also allowed for the preemption and prioritization of mission-critical railway services.
Charlotta Sund, Head of Customer Group Industry & Society at Ericsson, says: "The results of the tests performed to date are very promising and we will continue to test a variety of modems to ensure we can provide robust LTE networks for rail applications. We aim to develop solutions that ensure enhanced rail safety through communications-based train control and CCTV, as well as enhanced entertainment for passengers through services such as voice, platform information, advertising and Wi-Fi."