The system is designed to warn personnel working on and around track repairing machine about train upcoming by adjacent track.
Operation of track machines like ballast cleaning, tamping, grinding, stabilization etc. is quite dangerous itself as huge moving machine with weight from 30 to 300 tons and speed from 0,1 to 10 km/hour. Beside this, a machine operation is accompanied by very loud noise, so workers beside machine operate with sound protection headphones. The warning problem is not so important if the track repairing being made along limited length of track (30-60 meters). In this case usually temporary safety fences separate repair area from adjacent track in operation. The problem arises when track machine moves along track on the distance from 300 meters to 10 km per working day. Adequate warning consists of siren sound and bright flash lamps both on the top and on the lower sides of the machine. Working hours of track machine and timetable of train are strictly regulated by railways departments. Usually trains decrease the speed and give warning siren in the proximity to track machine. Sometime track machine stops operation, waiting the train to pass by. Moreover, every train is equipped with GPS and GPRS system to know its position in real time. Also, there are train position monitoring system around stations, switches and electric power supply leads. But, unfortunately, track machines and trains belong to different departments or companies and there is no common computer system to monitor position of trains and track machines together. That is why the automated warning system is actual and demanded for track machines.
Example of operation:
- A machine is coming to the track to be repaired. In general it is curved track with surrounding forest, houses, auto roads etc
- Operator switchs on the warning system – at shown picture it is radar system.
- While train is coming by adjacent track, the system recognizes it among other objects, as namely the train and its direction and speed.
- The system switches on warning signals 0.5-1 minute before train arrivals and then switches it off.