GATX Rail Europe is equipping its railcar fleet with the latest Bluetooth Low Energy intelligent sensors and telematics with a goal to digitize the entire fleet in the next few years. The TAF TSI compliant telematics equipment will be mounted during planned maintenance events on all freight cars across Europe.
After in-depth testing with several customers and different technology vendors’ hardware devices, GATX Rail Europe has entered into the roll-out phase for its telematics service offering.
“It has been extremely important to us to find the efficient approach to digitalizing our fleet. We wanted to ensure that we selected the right solution in terms of technology, hardware, compatibility with sensors and IT security. Now we are confident to present our plan and future offering to our customers and say thank you to those who have collaborated with us during the testing phase”, says Jacek Glowacki, Chief Financial Officer, GATX Rail Europe.
Easy plug-in to existing ERP and telematics platforms
During in-depth testing with GATX Rail Europe’s customers, it became clear that the solution must have flexible data interfaces. This way the data export from GATX Rail Europe to any customer’s ERP system or telematics portal can easily be automized and runs frictionless. GATX Rail Europe uses a web-service platform to guarantee real-time secured data transmission at all times. This is key to enable holistic fleet management with the highest availability.
GATX Rail Europe In-house Hosting for Data and IT Security
Data security and management is a major concern for any company embarking on the digital transformation journey, especially to the diverse group of industries our customers operate in. This is why GATX Rail Europe has chosen to transform its IT organization to host the entire telematics solution in-house. Staff has been trained to run the in-house telematics platform with our data centre located in Germany. Regular audits, maintenance and certifications are part of our high IT security standards for the new telematics solution.
On the subject of security, GATX Rail Europe has selected hardware of the highest ATEX standards to mount on the railcars. The sensors are mounted by highly-trained experts in GATX’s maintenance shop network. Also, our experts have automated the activation and deactivation of the devices to eliminate the possibility of human error during this process.
Benefits of digital railcars and telematics
The GATX Rail Europe telematics solution includes all standard features, from real-time location monitoring to geo-fencing, mileage and speed counting to shocks and temperature monitoring. For our customers, this opens up the opportunity to increase visibility in supply chains and to optimize logistics operations. The latter has been a blind spot that will now be eliminated and make rail freight transport even more attractive. Also, for GATX Rail Europe, digitizing the entire fleet allows us to find new ways to make railcar leasing easier for our customers like increased railcar availability and further optimization of the railcar maintenance process.
Project Timeline and Funding
The project has been co-funded by the European Union, as it is part of the initiative’s goal to make the sustainable rail freight transport mode more competitive and attractive. Thousands of GATX Rail Europe’s railcars have already been equipped with the latest TAF TSI compliant telematics technology. The remaining fleet will be equipped over the next few years during normal revision cycles to avoid unplanned downtimes.
If you are a GATX customer and are interested to jumpstart the digital experience, please contact your Key Account Manager for further information. If you are just interested to know more as the roll-out progresses, follow us on LinkedIn, we will make sure to keep you posted.