There are several key trends in the railway engineering market. So, we see the future in solutions based on artificial intelligence (AI). Their implementation is possible at all activity levels of machine builders and operator, from procurement planning and production schedule formation to investment decisions. Gartner Consulting estimated that only 1 out of 25 companies in the world is actively working with AI-based IT, and soon there will be 1/3 of such companies. The use of digital assistant technology will be a key component of the industry, including railway transport.
Digital production management platforms in virtual factory mode are dynamically developing. Each profitable industrial unit will be accompanied by its digital counterpart and integrate into a single intelligent system with support for optimization functions, simulation, and remote control. Another factor of competitiveness is the development of new manufacturing technologies of Industry 4.0: machine vision, augmented reality, collaborative robots, additive manufacturing, as well as promising solutions in the field of materials science (composite materials with desired properties, etc.).
The main challenge for the players is the anticipatory implementation of Industry 4.0 technologies by competitors. Siemens, Bombardier, GE are implementing unmanned driving projects, collecting and processing big data on locomotives, and using advanced technologies to monitor the condition of trains and infrastructure elements. Ctrl2GO solutions are also being used on the TMX and GC LokoTech sites in the areas of remote diagnostics of equipment operation, creation of digital doubles, recognition of brake pad wear using computer vision, etc. The predictive maintenance solution is already being applied on the locomotives of Russian Railways, and there are prospects for its replication to the entire fleet. The economic effect of the introduction of such systems on a global scale bodes billions of savings in service support costs, reduction in fleet management costs and increased transport safety.
We focus our digital solutions on high sales potential in global markets. We are planning to introduce a predictive analytics platform both for existing Russian and foreign partners, as well as for new customers in the EU, North and South America, and Asia. In terms of solutions for the development of digital assistant technologies of a locomotive driver with access to autopilot, we see great potential for cooperation with companies from the CIS and Eastern Europe, and then the world market.