The Shift2Rail innovation programme


What is the Shift2Rail innovation programme?

The Shift2Rail Joint Undertaking (S2R JU) is a new public-private partnership in the rail sector, established under Horizon 2020, to provide a platform for coordination of research activities with a view to driving innovation in the rail sector in the years to come.

Achieving a more competitive and resource-efficient European transport system with a view to addressing major societal issues such as rising traffic demand, congestion, security of energy supply and climate change, is part of the European strategy to build a common, smart and sustainable environment for the future.

Activities will focus around five key areas:

  1. developing a new generation of high-quality reliable rolling stock that substantially reduces the cost of rail services, drastically improves the quality of rail services and facilitates the use of trains throughout various Member States;
  2. developing intelligent traffic management and control systems, beyond signalling, building on current ERTMS, to optimise capacity, reliability and minimise life-cycle cost;
  3. delivering a new railway infrastructure system that will radically improve capacity and performance and reduce costs related to development, maintenance and renewals;
  4. developing innovative IT solutions and services to make railway services more attractive;
  5. developing sustainable and attractive freight solutions, helping rail to enter into new market segments and become an integrated part of advanced logistic solutions.

As part of the area 2, ERTMS (European Rail Traffic Management Systems), in particular, is a prime example of how the European rail sector can drive innovation aimed at supporting the creation of a unified railway area and improving efficiency, while opening up significant business opportunities for the European rail industry, both in and outside the EU.

Full details about the Shift2Rail programme can be found into the  Shift2Rail Master document, currently in a draft version yet.

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