SBB Swiss Federal Railways have joined the openETCS Foundation e.V.. SBB was officially welcomed as the 18th member of the Foundation, on 18 February. Earlier, colleague railway operators and operator interest groups like Rail Delivery Group (UK), DB AG (Germany), NS (Netherlands), SNCF (France), industrial partners e.g. AEbt, Clearsy, Formal Mind and Railergy and a number of individual railway experts became members of the association.
The main objective of the openETCS Foundation e.V. is the application of open source licensing principles to critical software components in railway safety (ETCS) and railway automation applications in particular on the vehicle side, enabling cost sharing developments among partners, avoiding vender lock-in situations with particular suppliers by opening up a free software service market for updates, upgrades and future versions. A first commercial application of openETCS licensing has been implemented on DB’s ICE rolling stock operating on the VDE8 ETCS equipped high speed line (Munich – Berlin).
In addition, the openETCS approach enables the cost-efficient and reliable implementation of ETCS by state-of-the-art tooling systems via formal specification and verification of system requirements, automatic and ETCS-compatible code generation and validation, and model-based test case generation and test execution. For this purpose, a first major research and development project has been completed. It was funded within the framework of the European funding programme ITEA2 (Information Technology for the European Advancement).
The openETCS Foundation e.V. offers a platform where members can exchange experiences and jointly initiate and implement projects in the field of train control, train automation and general digitisation for railway applications based on open source and open innovation.
These were indeed the main drivers for SBB to join the openETCS Foundation e.V.. In the next step SBB and its partners of the innovation program “smartrail 4.0” want to cooperate more closely within the openETCS community in order to combine the already existing know-how, and thus to develop an open on-board CCS reference architecture (openCCS). The goal is to validate the viability and relevance of this openCCS onboard reference architecture approach by using e.g. demonstrators.