IoT for transforming railways

Our team has IIoT as its core theme for all our offerings, be it IoT Sensors/Systems for remote maintenance, or services related to EIA projects specially Noise and Vibration Monitoring using IoT.

Asset management is a term that has rapidly gained influence in the rail industry in recent times. Asset management comprises all systems, methods, procedures and tools to optimize costs, performance and risks for the complete rail infrastructure life cycle. The aim is to realize the best “value for money”. These optimizations shall address all infrastructure activities (building, maintenance and renewal, including machines and materials) over the whole life cycle as well as the consequences of these activities for the government as owner and for the train operators and passengers as users.

As the Internet of Things (IoT) gets more pervasive, industrial engineers are looking at new possibilities. Indian Railways, though is in a position where it can exploit the potential of industrial IIoT and evolve, had however been cautious. This article presents a bird’s eye-view of the concepts, their applicability, mode of application, and benefits of adoption of IoT in maintenance or reliability domain. Some of the available devices and equipment can be seen in advertisement in this magazine.

Equipment Reliability Applications

Recent developments in IoT have helped to revive the reliability of even the oldest assets by the integration of IoT sensors with crucial components like brakes, wheelsets, and engines, and Rail-Tracks. Implementation of these technologies for monitoring of conditions of wheel breakups and for EIA services is already underway.

Maintenance of Rail-Tracks and power systems especially benefits from the feedback of variables that have predictive values for maintenance teams. If problems with wagons and tracks can be identified proactively, the operators can take pre-emptive actions for safer operations.

Remote Monitoring

Smart sensors and analytics across the train engine, coaches, and tracks allow rail systems to be remotely checked and repairs planned before a small issue magnifies into huge trouble. Asset health monitoring through IoT insights implies less of maintenance delays and helps in extending life.

OEMs and Indian Railways can leverage in the manufacturing processes of locomotives, wagons and train coaches. Feedback on manufacturing processes is an inherent part of product development with IoT concept. These monitoring speedily and dynamically enhance final product quality. Applying continuous engineering and IoT can help to quicken the delivery of more sophisticated and connected products in the rail industry. Our company is striving to deliver required smart sensors and IoT systems keeping pace with these evolutions world over.


IoT is here and is getting all-pervasive. Indian Railways can embrace the same in all functional areas. In fact, great strides have already been made in areas of Operations and Passengers’ management. Equipment reliability, & maintenance domains are also catching up at a rapid pace.

Potential areas of applications already under exploration in engineering domain are:-

  • Expedited data collection at the feasibility / EIA stage.
  • Wheel bearings, Engine Systems, and subsystems, HVAC systems Electrical units etc for condition analysis and management.

This article is a part of our June 2019 Magazine.