The PROTECTRAIL consortium, project reviewers (Mr Peter Prak/Mr Ruediger Ebandt) and Mr Andrej Grebenc, EC Project Officer (REA-Research Executive Agency), met on 22 January in Paris to conduct the 2nd PROTECTRAIL review meeting. Now in project month 29 (ending in March 2014), an overview assessment was done in order to evaluate the project management, quality of deliverables (foreseen for this stage), and preparation of the demonstration phase.
All SP leaders were present, with the meeting coordinated by Mr Vito Siciliano and Mr Carlo Dambra (project coordinators from Ansaldo).
Project scope and direction
PROTECTRAIL is tackling the railway security problem from a layered “system integration” perspective. The project will ensure that appropriate solutions and innovations are favoured over isolated questions and solutions, and will represent comprehensive and scalable answers to rail security.
The main objective is for each railway infrastructure manager and rail operator in Europe to compose its integration of existing technological tools on today or tomorrow’s frame of solutions by using the same architecture according to its own needs, requirements and budget.
Project management, quality of deliverables and preparation of the demonstration phase
Mr Carlo Dambra opened the meeting by presenting an overview on the project’s state-of-the-art.
The overview observed in particular the project period P2 (from 1.09.2011 to 31.08.2012/M13-M24), on all aspects related to financial matters, the work performed, the main results and next steps. In a nutshell, the project is on time and on budget.
After that the floor was taken by all the SP Leaders who, one by one, presented the status quo of each task/deliverables.
UIC, responsible for the project dissemination, reconfirmed its commitment to guarantee the proper diffusion of knowledge and results within and outside the consortium during the whole project. In its strategy it’s vital to promote PROTECTRAIL involving the project partners, the end users, the stakeholders, the European Commission and of course the general public.
As Marie-Hélène Bonneau explained, this is done by organising, promoting and participating in conferences, seminars and workshops (e.g. INNOTRANS). Information is also constantly disseminated on the project website (http://www.protectrail.eu/) presenting the latest news on the project developments.
Also a wide range of other information vehicles is used by UIC together with UNIFE to reach a larger number of recipients (brochures, posters, eight articles published since the end of 2011 with PROTECTRAIL content in the UIC eNews, etc.). A practical example of this is the newsletter that you are reading that will be sent to more than 4000 contacts across the world.
In the pipeline and for the final project leg, UIC will undertake a number of initiatives to enhance PROTECTRAIL’s visibility. The creation of dedicated multimedia dissemination materials, very close and prompt information of the progress of demonstrations, combined with a final project event in the first quarter of 2014, will be part of UIC’s support to ensure the success of PROTECTRAIL.
All this was followed with great attention by Mr Andrej Grebenc, Mr Peter Prak and Mr Ruediger Ebandt, who held a positive discussion with the presenters and coordinators on how to further improve the results.
The constant changes in society, technology and life require this type of research project to be capable of analysing the present and of preparing the future, by taking a holistic approach and considering all the relevant facts (solutions cost benefit, added value, operational and organisational demands, etc).
This input resulted in great benefits to the outcome of this review meeting, in what Mr Andrej Grebenc considered as a good demonstration of the consortium’s capacity to collaborate and ensure a project legacy.
By the end of the meeting Mr Ruediger Ebandt stated that he was happy with the project work and its management, and hoped that the remaining work and challenges could further contribute to a better railway transport system.
Project Background: PROTECTRAIL has been led by Ansaldo STS Spa since September 2010 for a 42 month period. The total cost is 21 million €. Six railway companies are involved in the consortium also acting as end-users: LG (Lithuania), PKP PLK SA (Poland), RFI (Italy), SNCF (France), TCDD (Turkey) and ZSSK (Slovakia). The UIC Security Division is leading the dissemination subproject. The objective is to guarantee that the project results will satisfy user needs and fulfil railway requirements. The main focus will be, on the feasibility of the proposed solutions regarding its organisational, operational and economical implementation.
For further information, consult the website at www.protectrail.eu