"This ‘digital transformation’ is expanding where consumers now want greater access to more personalized information throughout their travels."
With increasingly demanding passengers, public transportation agencies have always strived to remain at the forefront of technological innovation. Serving daily ridership of millions of passengers one particularly busy North American transit agency demands a high level of robustness, continuity and confidence when deploying new technologies and systems. That is why it is exciting to today spotlight an advanced new Integrated Multi-Modal Communications System from CSiT that is in the process of being fully validated by this large transit authority. In a real-world setting, the communications systems’ public address, passenger infotainment, media/advertising, CCTV and wireless connectivity functions are being put to the test.
Founded in 2011 by a group of senior executives from Telecite and ALSTOM, CSiT has decades of experience in delivering integrated communication and security systems to the transit industry worldwide. Their partners in developing this platform is Kontron, a leading global provider of Embedded Computing Technology (ECT) who blend Silicon Valley innovation with German engineering. To learn more about how the companies are working together to make the connected train a reality, our Editor Luke Upton spoke exclusively to Denis Poliquin, President of CSiT and Valentin Scinteie, Transportation Business Development Manager at Kontron to learn more about what the TRANSIS Train system can offer transit authorities.
The genesis of their successful collaboration started long before Valentin and Denis’ careers at Kontron and CSiT with both men having worked together for almost 20 years solving rail system challenges at other technology companies. Kontron’s embedded computing solutions and Valentin’s extensive transportation industry expertise provided the ideal supplier match that met Denis’ high standards for advanced, proven technologies equivalent to CSiT’s state-of-the-art communication systems. It is this strong relationship foundation that allows both companies to deliver value-added solutions to positively influence and enhance the future of transit operations.
With CSiT recognized expertise in proven information integration and wireless communication, I asked Denis what drives their unique approach: “CSiT understands that the informational evolution occurring with smart devices, social media and the internet is changing passenger transit experience expectations. This ‘digital transformation’ is expanding where consumers now want greater access to more personalized information throughout their travels. By making the connected train a reality with their highly integrated and interoperable systems, CSiT is valuable contributor in the push to implement Smart Cities.”
And Valentin gave us some insight into how Kontron’s technology supports CSiT’s bold vision: “Our TRACe™ transportation operational computers are completely compatible and fully validated with CSiT’s system solutions. TRACe products deliver the commercial-off-the- shelf (COTS) open architecture computing technologies that give CSiT the modular building blocks allowing them to offer maximum scalability and ease of upgradeability to their transit agency customers. “
“Delivering the proven standardized technologies crucial to ensure interoperability between the diverse types of sub-systems found in the transportation environment, TRACe also helps CSiT simplify development allowing them to focus on what they do best – build powerful, highly integrated and value-added systems specifically designed for the transportation industry. Kontron’s comprehensive line of TRACe platforms meet the full breadth of security, interoperability, reliable connectivity and power efficiency requirements of today’s transit agencies” continued Valentin.
CSiT is in the process of installing its TRANSIS-Train system on a busy subway line. The installation should be complete in two weeks for revenue operations. The CSiT TRANSIS-Train system is running on Kontron’s TRACe B304-TR and TRACe V304-TR EN50155-certified fanless transportation computers and two TRACe HMI D104 driver consoles.
Denis shares some more on the process: “This large municipal transit agency has one the most rigorous approval cycles for new equipment and solutions. One of the primary reasons this agency is working with CSiT is our commitment to supplying standardized systems, and I believe we are the first vendor worldwide to integrate COTS-based communication systems on trains. Standards-based solutions, unlike previous proprietary ones, ensure long-term scalability and interoperability with existing installed systems.”
On the question of future-proofing, Valentin understands the importance to metros; “Design and installation investments are futureproofed as our TRACe products are based on modular computer-on-module (COM) technology. The COM building block approach permits easy customization of an application and streamlines upgrades to the latest high performance Intel® Core i3/5/7 processor. To make these changes, all that is needed is to switch out the COM Express® module on the carrier board, all while maintaining compatibility with existing installed rail systems. TRACe also provides the ability to integrate mezzanine options that adds further value, allowing our partners CSiT to create new systems without significant modification to its original base design. At Kontron, we are thrilled to be able to demonstrate how our TRACe transportation computers are helping to drive the data revolution benefits of the connected train.”
If you’d like to find out more about TRACe COTS open architecture transportation products, contact Valentin Scinteie via email at Valentin.Scinteie@kontron.com
Kontron and CSiT will showcase both companies’ highly integrated, fully validated TRANSIS-Train and the TRANSIS multi-modal transit information system as well as TRACe hardware products at the UITP Global Public Transport Conference in Montreal, Canada, May 15 – 17 at the CSiT Booth # 5E100. Register here to schedule a meeting at the show.
In addition, CSiT CEO, Marshall Moreyne will give a timely presentation at the UITP conference on, “Are your Transit Information Systems Smart City ready?” This valuable session will take place on Monday, May 15 at 11 a.m., and will cover the important issue of bringing information to travelers in transit while insuring it is accessible, accurate, actionable, and can be integrated into and part of a Smart City.
For more features on rail and metro innovation like this: