Architecture of the data sharing solution

The current European rail freight market is a complex system involving a great number of different public and private stakeholders. One of the major objectives of the Smart-Rail project therefore is, to develop a methodology and architecture for exchange of data/information required for the optimisation process, between stakeholders, making use of existing initiatives where available.

In effort to achieve and develop this data exchange architecture, the main objective of WP5 is “to define, develop and implement an effective set of tools and measures which will improve the availability of information for freight rail stakeholders in order to improve the rail service quality.” Multiple aspects are followed in the solution design; the WP5 assumes a frequent communication with the three Continuous Improvement Track in order to identify the requirementsand needs of these Continuous Improvement Track. This WP will also be linked to activities and results from WP3 (cooperation within the rail sector) and WP4 (cooperation in the supply chain).

Deliverable Smart-Rail D5.1 focuses on determining the requirements for a data sharing solution, such as an interoperability platform, specifying the architecture for such a solution and suggest software components where needed. This deliverable contains therefore the overall interoperability architecture for Smart-Rail. The interoperability architecture specifies data sharing amongst relevant stakeholders, enabling those stakeholders to optimize their processes. The interoperability architecture does not consider those internal processes.

Further in this deliverable, the groundworks for building the Interoperability Platform to share the necessary data in the rail business are constituted. Based on the state-of-the-art developments and standardization in the railway sector, and based on the specific requirements of the Continuous Improvement Tracks, the logical database is suggested to consolidate the differing data sources for usage in the target applications, and the system architecture is laid down to facilitate the system services necessary for a successful operation.

Among the varying data sources, the international community systems for exchanging data are highlighted, as the systems of RailNetEurope (RNE) and those of RailData. The interoperability platform is ready to be used by the CITs in the specific selected subset suitable for implementation.

Due to its focus on the data exchange issues, WP5 is strongly interconnected with the remaining work packages. With the analytical or conceptual work packages (WP2-WP4) it is interconnected in the sense of adopting the general approach and process architectures. From the Continuous Improvement Track (CITs, implemented initially in the project as the Living Labs, LLs) it assumes the data exchange requirements, and after designing the solution, it paves the path towards its implementation in each CIT.