The aim in this project was to identify problems and needs associated with innovative signal system procurement procedures.
The project was based on the client organisation’s ability to achieve the goals of functionality, time and budget. A literature review and a number of workshops, with subsequent structured analysis, were carried out. All rail traffic is subject to some form of control system and safety standard.
Signal systems constitute the main part of the control system. From a systems perspective, infrastructure level signal systems are complex, technically advanced systems that require inter-disciplinary consideration.
At sub and individual levels, signal systems and traffic control objects are usually not that complicated. Combining many sub-systems and integrating them into infrastructure systems creates a complex structure and becomes an abstract, non-visual creation.
In order to be able to understand the complexity of these systems, and move towards a more manageable way of identifying the requirements needed for effective and innovative signal system development, an analysis of signal systems was carried out from a process perspective point of view. Requirements were analysed from two theoretical perspectives, Integrated Product Development (IPD) and Systems Engineering (SE). Both contain descriptions of how product development actors should be involved in terms of roles and responsibilities.
Analysis of the workshop results identified a number of problem areas that need to be addressed if future signal system development is to be implemented in a better way.
Several problem areas were also identified through the IPD and SE theoretical descriptions but these need to be adapted to suit individual client organisations.