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TRES pilot program in Rotterdam with RET

FMT is proud to share a recent Robotics Pilot Program completed alongside Downer with RET in Rotterdam.

Asset Manager Ben Pilgram from RET shared that like most tech and service- orientated companies, RET also faces difficulties in attracting and retaining enough qualified technicians to keep their fleet of 166 vehicles operational and safe.

The changing demographics in Rotterdam and The Hague (a large proportion will retire within the next couple of years, including within RET) conflict with the expressed need for more metros and the necessity to uphold the quality and quantity of maintenance on the existing fleets.

This provided FMT in partnership with Downer an opportunity to conduct a Robotics Pilot Program with RET Metro in Rotterdam. Across a four-week on-site pilot, FMT worked closely with RET's staff, demonstrating key capabilities tailored to RET's needs with the primary goal of digitising and automating necessary visual inspections in a way that would free up time for mechanics, thereby increasing their availability to maintain and repair vehicles.

FMT used the Train Examination System (TRES) to successfully demonstrate the digitisation and automation of 19 prescribed inspections on each side of the bogie - resulting in over 200+ inspections being completed on the underframe of each train in under 1 hour.

FMT's approach to automating train inspections offers distinct advantages:

  • No Infrastructure Modifications Needed: Agile and mobile platforms eliminate the need for extensive infrastructure modifications, speeding up implementation and reducing lifecycle costs. The ability to deploy multiple robots prevents potential bottlenecks.
  • Flexible Inspection Capability: Designed for adaptability, FMT's solutions allow for the addition of new inspections over time without hardware changes, evolving with the rail industry's changing needs.
  • Flexible support options: FMT is able to provide a range of support options ranging up to a comprehensive managed service that ensures we are with you for every step in your automation journey.

Thanks to a great team effort from engineers and specialists within RET (Tristan Zaaijer, Abdel Benaissa BScAlexander van DoeverenWishall SewnathMarjelke ParéMax JanssenDaniel Aukema and colleagues from the fleet service department at Waalhaven) and FMT (Saad KhanDavid PhilpotLoic AyoulOwen PlagensBen McKelvey, and the ever energetic Daniel Messina).