The Internet of Things in the rail realm

How are North American railroads and rail technology providers tapping into the Internet of Things (IoT)? How have sensors and smart, connected devices manifested themselves in the rail world? How will they? And how is this data-filled digital dragway changing the way freight and passenger railroads, and the suppliers who serve them, do business?

During the past several months, the Progressive Railroading staff has been posing these and other questions to a variety of railroaders, technology providers, educators and other interested observers. Their insights helped frame our March print issue IoT cover story package, which includes a building-block-of-a-piece I put together. You'll see more from us — and perspective from industry contributors — on the IoT front in the months ahead. Particularly on

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  • The Internet of Things (IoT)…or Analytics of Things (AoT) as we like to refer to it at Teradata…. holds the keys to a successful future for all rail companies! As Teradata’s logistics industry consultant, I work with several of our rail customers who are already actively engaged in gaining insights through IoT analytics. The business cases are limitless: Predictive part/engine failure, weather impact upon operational efficiencies, track defect predictions, etc. If your organization isnt’ focused on IoT/AoT, then follow the following key steps:

    • Find a Business Area
    - Analytic oriented leader who can champion IoT/AoT
    • Identify 2-3 Key Opportunities
    - High level goals & objectives
    - Socialize them within cross-functional teams
    • Engage an Experienced Technology Partner
    - Discovery & prototyping
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