Refit of passenger information systems

Refit projects for passenger information systems are particularly challenging. To be cost-efficient, existing infrastructure must be maintained as long as possible. Nevertheless, investments must never come too late, as this could cause failures or declining passenger numbers.

The bridge is formed by so-called mixed and multiple tractions. In this way, passenger information systems from different vehicle types or suppliers can be operated simultaneously. Outdated trains or buses can be gradually replaced by new ones without disrupting ongoing operations.

FELA has specialized in these special requirements for many years. As a result, we now have in-depth knowledge of the market with regard to the various manufacturer systems, as well as the typical industry requirements, in order to be able to implement such projects in a scalable manner and exactly according to the customer’s wishes.

FELA analyzes the current situation, plans the necessary project steps and develops the necessary components to ensure smooth communication between old and new systems until the final commissioning.

Planning & Conceptual Design

We make a point of looking at refit projects from the customer’s perspective and carrying them out economically and efficiently.

For this purpose, we record all the requirements for the new passenger information system with the customer and define the functions and components that need to be renewed. We will select the optimum components together and determine the quantity structure. It is also essential to record the exact position and installation features of the components to be replaced.

In the case of system purchases, such as video systems, we can act as a general contractor on request. A detailed implementation specification, the project plan with milestones, and time and resource planning are binding components for the successful implementation of refit projects.

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Adaptation of Mechanics | Electrics | Hardware | Software

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To ensure that we renew exactly those components and software modules for our customers that are optimal for their vehicles, we mechanically adapt the refit material to the installation location. Our designers have great experience in the design of special components, so that the principle of “Form-Fit-Function” can be taken into account.

The same applies to software modules and backend or control center: our developers integrate the software architecture of the existing system with the new FELA passenger information system and implement special features of the customer on request.

Our hardware and software developers also program and adapt interfaces to vehicle buses or data hubs and integrate them into the overall system. The focus is always on the customer’s requirements and the individual adaptation of all systems.

Migration with Existing System

The installation of components and software modules in refit projects is similar to that for new vehicles. The difference is that in refit projects, existing hardware and software must be integrated and docked to the new systems via interface. These interfaces can be programmed by our developers, which ensures optimal migration with the existing system.

In this context, backward compatibility is an important issue. For the integration of existing hardware and software, the FELA team has experienced experts who can connect our product systems with the customer’s inventory by means of reverse engineering.

Furthermore, it is important to plan the transition period in mixed operation with the customer and to anticipate and solve possible problems (hardware and software side) in advance.

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Installation | Initial Operation

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In the case of initial operation, the first vehicle is put into operation together in close coordination by means of “training on the job”. This is done according to predefined script including forward and backward testing.

The aim is to train the customer’s personnel in such a way that subsequent vehicles can be commissioned and tested independently without the help of the FELA team.

However, all manifestations of the commissioning process are possible: be it that the customer prefers a short training and would like to commission the further vehicles on his own, or be it that the FELA team takes over the complete commissioning of all refit vehicles. In between, any combination is possible and can be contracted in advance.

Passenger Information

The most obvious part of the passenger information system consists of the optical components. We supply TFT monitors with flexible mounting concept, HMIs for the driver's stand and the side and front indicators for train and bus, streetcar, cable car or ship.
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CCTV System

Video surveillance systems increase security for passengers and protection against vandalism. FELA also supplies front and rear cameras for trains and buses, providing additional security for operators, engineer train drivers and waiting passengers on the platform.
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Announcements and emergency intercoms are also part of a passenger information system. We supply all components from amplifiers to locomotive driver microphones.
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Train Communication System

Our network components provide the necessary train (land) communication. We provide Ethernet switches, routers and antennas for both wired and wireless data transmission inside and outside the vehicle.
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Communication of passenger information systems: Data hubs

Standardized interfaces and protocols are essential for smooth communication of passenger information systems in refit projects, but also to ensure future-proof systems in new vehicles.

The Customer System Integration Platform (CUS) is managed by SBB (the Swiss Federal Railways), but connection to it is now mandatory for all public transport companies – in effect, creating a national data hub. All timetable and real-time data of the connected companies are delivered to it in the VDV 453/ VDV 454 format, exchanged and re-installed fed back into the passenger information systems.

As the only system supplier at the moment, FELA was able to go live with its own connection to the CUS data hub at the beginning of February 2022. In this way, we also make it easy for smaller operators and third-party providers of passenger information systems to connect to CUS.

Software for passenger information systems: POIScentral and POISmobile

The used software solution POIS, especially developed for passenger information systems, consists of POIScentral, for the administration in the backend or control center, and POISmobile, for the operation in the frontend or in the vehicle.

The functional scope of POIS can be individually combined by means of flexible software modules, depending on the specific project requirements. They include functions such as data import / export, HMI operability, control of sub-systems such as audio, video or automatic software updates.

The software is designed to control ticketing and POS systems via the FIS. Thereby the software modules POIS for the passenger information system merge with the software EasyDrive for cash register applications.

Passenger information systems from FELA: Your advantages

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FELA Management AG