EQUANS is playing a full part in the three transitions taking place in the public transport sector – digital, energy and industrial.
1 - Digital transition: a revolution already underway
The digital transition for transport is still mainly driven by user demand. EQUANS is a major player in connectivity for transport services, through its brand Icomera. By equipping trains, metros, stations and buses with its high-level broadband routers, Icomera provides passengers with an excellent mobile Wi-Fi network, both on rail and road-based services. These routers are also beneficial for public transport operators, who can use them to share real-time images from onboard security cameras with their safety control centres, so that they can intervene faster if there is an incident. Since EQUANS is highly skilled in both railway signalling and digital systems, the company can also help operators to digitalise this equipment, most of which was previously electromechanical. This has led EQUANS to develop its own digital signalling solution for trams in Avignon. The company also holds a contract with Thales to jointly develop a new generation of computerised signalling systems for SNCF, the leading passenger and freight transport operator in France.
2 - Energy transition: driving decarbonisation
EQUANS is also a key partner in the electrification and thus the decarbonisation of public transport. EQUANS teams play a very significant role in rail electrification, through subsidiaries like Ineo Rail, Powerlines and Systrans. They are using innovative methods to decarbonise road freight transport, by implementing the “e-Highway” concept they jointly developed with Siemens and Scania: equipping sections of motorway with catenaries that hybrid lorries can connect to, in order to recharge their batteries. Finally, since electricity is not the only alternative to decarbonise transport, the EQUANS teams are also working on hydrogen engine solutions to equip railway rolling stock used by operators in the United Kingdom.
3 - Industrial transition: facilitating operations and maintenance
Finally, EQUANS is also playing its part in the transport sector’s industrial transition, by developing smart solutions that enable its clients to improve the maintenance of their infrastructure. To achieve this, EQUANS teams are equipping rails, catenaries and other components with IoT sensors, and using powerful Icomera routers to transmit all information to technical departments in real-time, so that they can remotely verify catenary voltages and move towards predictive maintenance of their installations. This dual expertise in infrastructure management enables EQUANS to generate a complete overview of the transport network, or “hypervision”.