Here comes the device for freight wagon monitoring
To monitor the status and operating conditions of freight wagons and, if needed, to implement maintenance and repair operations is the aim of the research project “SWAM_RAIL”, conducted by Polytechnic University of Turin and funded by Regione Piemonte.
The project idea aims at solving a crucial issue for the diagnostics and safety of freight railway transportation, since freight wagons are not equipped with any electric systems, unlike passenger carriages.
The solution proposed by Aurelio Somà, professor at POLITO, along with engineer Federico Fraccarollo has led to the development of a prototype of the patented device, immediately optioned by two leading companies in the sector, Movimatica and LCA Ballauri.
The solution is based on the installation of a monitoring system inside the cap bushing of the freight wagon with sensors that measure the vehicle parameters in motion, its temperature and position.
The mechanism is self-powered by energy harvesters and an integrated system that creates a wireless network, which allows data to be transmitted and collected by the maintenance staff.
“An all-round application of what I love to define as AIOT Autonomous Internet of Things,” said Aurelio Somà. “Evolution self-powered by the Internet of Things that allows to populate with sensors – through the design and development of specific energy harvesters – also facilities and systems which cannot be easily connected to the electric system or where the use of batteries is not sufficient”.