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Balfour Beatty launches rail innovation centre

Balfour beatty's robotic testing rig 3to2

Balfour Beatty has launched its new rail innovation centre in Derby.

Built to develop its digital rail concept, the purpose built facility will focus on its latest developments in measurement systems, ‘predict & prevent’ technology, signalling and data science.

It will also be developing its software products including a range of Omnicom products which monitor the track and AssetView which optimises the data collected to predict and prevent failures occurring.

Balfour Beatty chief executive for rail and utilities Mark Bullock said: “Digital technologies are rapidly changing the rail industry, bringing new efficiencies and presenting new opportunities.

“The Rail Innovation Centre is at the heart of Balfour Beatty’s technology offering with the specific purpose of driving efficiencies and safety across the rail network for those who work on the railway and ultimately the travelling public.”

The centre will employ over 150 technicians and engineers, data scientists and developers.

The contractor said the technologies would build on established systems and would be the latest developments in artificial intelligence. These would include machine learning and machine vision systems, and the application of robot testing which will enable remote, unattended and high-speed testing of the rail infrastructure in a safe and controlled environment.

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