Bentley Systems Incorporated congratulated Network Rail, owner and operator of Britain’s rail infrastructure, on winning the Asset Management Award at the highly prestigious Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) Innovation Awards 2014. Network Rail won for its new and innovative Linear Assets Decision Support (LADS) system. LADS is powered by Bentley Optram, an operational performance modeling system that enables proactive management of linear railway assets. The IET awards, which celebrate the very best innovations in science, engineering, and technology, are judged by a panel of industry experts.
Bentley Systems, working with Capgemini – one of the world’s foremost providers of consulting, technology, and outsourcing services – helped Network Rail combine 14 disparate data sources and associated departmental information into one common digital view of the United Kingdom’s rail network. LADS is improving the planning of track maintenance by enabling better decisions in the office and in the field, with the objective of saving GBP 125 million by the end of Network Rail’s financial and planning Control Period 5 in March 2019. LADS is part of Network Rail’s Offering Rail Better Information Services (ORBIS) program, a GBP 325 million transformation initiative to put quality asset information at the heart of intelligent decision making. By collecting, collating, analyzing, joining, and then exploiting asset information in decision support tools like LADS, Network Rail will deliver more than GBP 750 million in benefits over 10 years, in addition to a safer, more reliable railway.
Paula Marie Brown, IET head of transport and member of the judging panel, said, “Network Rail has successfully met the need for asset-intensive industries to acquire data and use it operationally to meet strategic objectives. LADS creates new opportunities for maintenance staff to make better decisions, which can lead to better performing assets yielding higher returns on investment.”
Andrew Smith, Bentley Systems rail solutions executive, said, “Bentley is very proud of the LADS project and our extensive, ongoing strategic relationship with Network Rail. The LADS IET Asset Management Award win against such strong and diverse competition is testament to the excellent work the ORBIS team is doing to help improve efficiency and safety across the entire U.K. rail network. LADS is already helping Network Rail streamline rail corridor maintenance, enhancing the performance of these crucial transportation assets by making key information readily available to the right people, when and where they need it, via mobile tablets in the field. It was a pleasure to join key colleagues from Network Rail and Capgemini at the awards to celebrate the success of LADS.”
Stephen Dyke, Network Rail director, Digital Railway, ORBIS Program, said, “We appreciate Bentley’s contributions towards our IET award – and, in particular, the innovative Bentley Optram technology that serves as the foundation of our LADS system. We are confident that, by having on hand the right information encompassing our entire track estate, our maintenance teams will significantly improve the effectiveness and safety of work planning decisions – enabling the right work to be performed in the right place at the right time. We commend Bentley’s partnering approach, and we could not have delivered this transformation without Bentley’s Optram product and their approach to delivery.”
About the Linear Assets Decision Support System
The Linear Assets Decision Support (LADS) system, powered by Bentley Optram, integrates and analyzes track data from various sources to enable Network Rail engineers to make better-informed decisions on maintenance requirements and priorities. Replacing reactive with proactive maintenance, LADS helps ensure regularly scheduled maintenance is fully aligned with objective engineering needs, and identifies problem areas quickly and accurately. The system automatically integrates and analyzes a full range of data, including on track geometry, condition, and formation, as well as on other linear track assets, generated from sensors on Network Rail maintenance trains, visual inspections, and maintenance records, to give engineers a full picture of each section of track.