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Mitigating the process and service barriers in African rail transportation, the digital disruption has transformed the entire framework for a safe and secure platform. On the rail industry level, transportation is one of the most sensitive sectors, with immense potential. Encapsulating its features and providing it with a boost of the latest technology, has brought a major change in the predictive & proactive solution approach in the railway industry.

With a wide range of digital transportation including Smart Rail architecture, Cloud connectivity, and Artificial intelligence, there is an enhanced focus on making the travel experience more satisfying. Railways follow more than ever customer focussed approach which is driving digitalisation towards amplifying the security and safety of not just the railway employees but also the travellers.

Here is how digitalization is enhancing rail transport safety and security:

1. IoT Solutions for a safer, smarter, and efficient transportation

IoT is redefining safety with the potential to amalgamate connected machines, analytics, and embedded sensors for a more transparent operation. This has further paved a platform for smart solutions in ticketing, route scheduling, passenger information, and rail analytics. 

The railway is a massive sector that connects people in both urban and rural areas. Traditionally, with no transparency and security constraints, rails would have a higher chance of derailment or accidents in case of any abnormality that could not be gathered. 

With IoT, rail transportation has the option of remote checking and performing safety checks without being physically present. This has reduced accidents, cut down maintenance costs, and helped railways develop a predictive approach towards safety.

IoT also offers Fewer Maintenance Delays. With IoT integrating every system in the rail sector and smart sensors equipped in every track, coach, engine, it is now feasible to reduce maintenance delays. IoT devices gather real-time data and this allows a predictive approach to mend the issues even before they happen. Data Analytics allows for better control of trains by tracking and monitoring them over networks or connected systems. It also helps in identifying the impact of weather conditions on the trains. 

2. Cyber Security 

With digital solutions and complex interconnected systems, cybersecurity has emerged as a major challenge in railways. However, digitalisation has also addressed the security requirements and incorporated data security in all the phases of the control system. 

With end-to-end security, railway transportation has given cybersecurity a layered approach where a model is prepared to assess risk to a system or network. 

3. Artificial Intelligence

With enhanced operations and customer requirements, the Railway industry has an array of pain points that needs to be addressed. The areas that demand periodic attention are construction, maintenance, and process operation. Since rail transportation is a massive network that is ever-expanding and stems to even the remotest of places, it is possible for humans to oversee these issues.

This is where AI steps in with its eye for every detail and knack for solving issues at the core without the fear of safety or security. Ai can help with a myriad of processes as part of the digital rail transportation solutions of predictive maintenance. It is one of the best railway gen-next solutions with digitalisation is the ability to collect real-time data of the equipment and use it to predict the maintenance requirements. As opposed to the traditional method of periodic maintenance and preventive maintenance, identifying the potential risks and mending them right away can have a huge impact on the safety and security of human life. Predictive maintenance encompasses cutting-edge technology to identify potential risks on the equipment before it occurs. This eliminates the unexpected taking down the rails for service or creating havoc due to emergency failures. 

The amalgamation of IoT, Artificial Intelligence, Analytics has driven digital transformation in Africa rail transportation to a fast momentum. These technologies devised better reliability on railways with enhanced safety, fewer maintenance delays, streamlined operations, and optimized passenger experience. 

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