Railway track monitoring Dortmund main station

Automated track monitoring using chain inclinometers


Between April 2014 and March 2017, an automated measurement system monitored all rail track alignments and catenary masts in Dortmund’s busy main station. The monitoring system consisted of one total station and approx. 600 custom-built inclination sensors. The inclinometers were combined in chains and clamped directly onto the rails. Every 6 minutes, the sensors recorded local inclination and temperature values. By combining the inclination measurements for each sensor chain, subsidence and torsion (twist) values were computed for each rail, allowing monitoring the entire construction site in real-time. In case pre-set threshold values were exceeded, the responsible site supervisors were automatically alerted in order to coordinate mitigating measures.

Our services

  • Development and night-time installation of a complex measuring system consisting inclination sensors and a total station
  • Measurement interval of 6 minutes
  • Management and analysis of 500’000 data points per day
  • Automated calculation of displacements, torsion and deflection values
  • Threshold exceedance checks and automated alerting

Further references

All references