Already in its second year, from 21st to 25th of September 2020 the Digital Rail Summer School took place at the Digital Test Field of DB in the iron ore mountains. This annual event aims on attracting both IT and railway technology students to team up in joint projects. Digitalisation throughout the entire rail system not only means the introduction of new devices and computer-aided processes, but also represents new challenges in the training and further education of all people involved.

Digitalisation in railways is a cross-cutting issue in which IT expertise must be combined with knowledge of railway operations and authorisation. There is not a single course of study or training today which brings together all of these aspects. The programming languages, which are currently popular in computer science – such as Python, Java, JavaScript, Objective-C, or .NET – are well suited for dynamic systems, agile, web-based processes and app development. However, none of these programming languages can be approved for safety-relevant systems in rail operations without restrictions.

It was not a surprise that the involved universities gave priority to a “EULYNX Live” demonstration: A co-simulation with hardware-in-the-loop; control of a switch motor from the simulation model, first in the IoT lab at HPI, then in the Digital Test Field of DB. After a demo in a dedicated lecture, a light signal and several axle counters have been connected with a simulator of a digital interlocking based on EULYNX SCI interfaces. A train passed several times the block sections and the functioning of the EULYNX data telegrams was successfully demonstrated.

The Digital Rail Demo Day on 24th of September was a conference and fair where innovative rail technologies had been presented and demonstrated live. In addition, the digital test field track was presented as a real laboratory for research, development and testing of networked system innovations and its possibilities for the implementation from innovation projects. Amongst EULYNX related research, several master theses had been presented and are available in short movies.