The future railways are in need of modern and cost-effective operation and communication solutions that are harmonised throughout the European Union. One of the main goals, in Finland, is to reach digitalisation with a cost-effective solution that provides higher traffic capacity and to equip railway sections with the European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS). This means that Finland could potentially implement a modern next-generation radio network system for railways, such as Future Radio Mobile Communication System (FRMCS).

Finrail Ltd. chose Omnitele to assist in the Digirail study to analyse and evaluate the future Finnish communication network of the railway systems. Omnitele's responsibility was to bring technological know-how in terms of telecommunication options and to evaluate future technologies and possibilities. The study has been conducted in collaboration with other key railway stakeholders. The study started in May 2019 and the first part was completed and published on the 2nd of April 2020. The report of the study was also submitted to the Finnish Ministry of Transport and Communication.

In terms of telecommunication and radio networks, the high-level conclusion of the Digirail study is that the radio-based European Train Control System (ETCS) is the best technological prerequisite for the future advanced train control and communication.

The goals for the Digirail study are:

  • Increasing environmentally-friendly railway traffic - equipment modernisation, energy efficiency and lower carbon footprint in construction
  • Increasing capacity and cost-efficiency - more efficient control and communication to increase the railway capacity, enabling automation and providing better services to end-users
  • Improving safety and reliability - all-new solutions must fulfil strict availability and reliability requirements to ensure safe operation
  • New opportunities for developing services - the opportunity to be among the first to implement ETCS FRMCS implementations, which could create export possibilities for the industry

“Omnitele has a profound level of telecom experience and a solid reputation in technical advisory roles in these types of complex and demanding projects. Their ability to combine technical possibilities and business objectives into a customer orientated approach is the reason why we selected Omnitele “, said Jari Pylvänäinen, project officer in Finrail Ltd.

Finrail Ltd. offers railway traffic control and management services. The core of the services consists of railway traffic control, traffic planning and capacity management to coordinate railway work and traffic, operation centre operations and passenger information services related to railway travel.

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