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Planning Rail Capacity through Automated Infrastructure Design Competition Briefing

Event details
An Innovate UK competition on behalf of Network Rail

Opens 22 October 2018

Do you have an innovative approach that will help to deliver Network Rail’s future infrastructure requirements through a demonstration of automated design? If so the competition ‘Planning rail capacity through automated infrastructure design’ will be for you.

Network Rail will work with Innovate UK to invest up to £300,000 to support the development and demonstration of new capability in automated design. This collaborative R&D competition is funded by Network Rail’s Whole System Modelling programme. Its core aim is to encourage the development of solutions in automated design tools, so that these tools will be market-ready in the next 2 to 5 years. The initiative also perfectly aligns with the organisation’s latest ‘Open for Business’ mantra, brought about by the Hansford review. The taxpayer funded organisation is increasingly looking for ways to break down barriers and make it easier for other organisations to invest in and build on the railway, thereby increasing innovation, efficiency and reducing cost.

Automated design enables engineers to automatically explore a wide design space and identify the best design options quickly and a cost-effective manner. This competition encourages the development of products and services that enable rapid automatic design of rail infrastructure. Successful applicants will develop solutions relevant to rail and will apply to the automated design of track layout, overhead line electrification, traction power supply systems, signalling systems, or other aspects of the railway where benefits may be seen

Innovations for this competition must:

  • propose solutions that form part of an integrated modelling space
  • have high technological maturity
  • deliver a proof of concept in the form of a demonstration

Organisations can apply for a share of £300,000 for projects to demonstrate aspects of tomorrow’s railway today. Small organisations may receive up to 70% of costs, medium sized organisations 60% and large organisations 50%, with projects starting in early 2019.The competition also offers an excellent opportunity to work closely with Network Rail in devising your demonstrations.

The full competition details can be found online here.

This Briefing event will be an opportunity to learn more about this competition, how to apply and met with potential collaborators.


09:30 Registration

10:00 Welcome

Ian Stock, Manager – Rail & Marine, Knowledge Transfer Network

10:10 Network Rail Introduction

Ben Ford, Network Rail

10:40 Competition Scope

Rhianne Montgomery and Kelvin Davies, Innovate UK

11:10 Application Process & Eligibility

Rhianne Montgomery, Kelvin Davies and Melissa Hughes, Innovate UK

11:30 Q&A Session

11:45 Break & Networking

12:15 Impact and Need to Support Modelling and Simulation

Martin Baldry, Network Rail

12:30 Developments in Generative Design

Pari Singh, CEO, The Engineering Company

12:45 Wider Rail Industry Perspectives

13:00 Pitches

13:15 Lunch & Networking

14:15 Networking / Brokerage Session

Opportunity for 1:1s with asset owners, Network Rail, Innovate UK and KTN

16:00 Close

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