TRB 2023 – Agile Railway Simulation

Photo of the Paddington Station platform on London's Elizabeth line 2022.

The Elizabeth line has been designed to the highest standards for safety, operational efficiency, and passenger comfort as shown in this photo of the Paddington Station platform. Source: Crossrail Press Photos.

I’m presenting our paper “Agile Simulation in Planning and Operating London’s Elizabeth Line” at the Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting on 10 January 2023 in Washington (Session 3188: Recent Developments in Rail Operating Technologies). My co-authors are Giorgio Medeossi from Trenolab and Mike Bagshaw from MTR UK.

Agile simulation is not a new type of simulation, but rather integrating simulation more fully into the railway planning process. This helps railways take full advantage of improved hardware and software, including multi-objective optimization and integration with other models to reduce energy use and/or improve multi-modal coordination.

Agile simulation works by integrating simulation more fully into the railway planning process … so it can be used for more complex strategic planning and more types of tactical planning. As such it’s especially useful for solving many of today’s key railway challenges such as quickly increasing capacity and service quality.

Importantly, agile simulation is based on soft skills such as improved communications, relationships, and trust, … In short, working closely together in a collaborative and learning environment.

Finally, I think it’s interesting to recognize that agile simulation is a stepping-stone. In the future simulation will be fully integrated into railway planning and operating processes allowing, for example, dispatchers to re-plan service in real time.

Hope to see you there!

Presentation PDF

Presentation Video

Andy Nash

January 5, 2023


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