And the nominees for the RailFreight Innovation Awards are…

The nominees for the RailFreight Innovation Awards have been announced. These awards are given to the best innovative product or concept within the rail freight industry at RailTech Europe, taking place from 26 to 28 March in Utrecht, the Netherlands. The award ceremony takes place during the dinner of this event on 26 March 2019.

The nominees for the Rail Freight Innovation Awards are SBB Cargo, Traxens and RailApp. Respectively, these companies have been nominated for the 5L Next, Digital Freight Train and the transaction and communication platform. The selection has been made by a jury panel of experts. At the exhibition fair, the companies will get the chance to present their product once more, after which the same jury will make its final call on the winner of the award.

SBB Cargo

5L Next is a project aiming for a new freight wagon that includes several innovations. 5L stands for Low-noise, Lightweight, Long-running, Logistics-enabled and Life cycle cost-oriented. The project is led by SBB Cargo, while industry partners supply various components that makes up a sustainable rail car. SBB assembles the equipment and operates the wagon, which is called the 5L demonstrator.

A total of six different systems have been tested for their functions and properties during operation. These systems include bogies, brakes, wheelsets, measures for noise reduction, telematic applications and automatic coupling. The wagon should produce less wear and tear and result in a reduction of noise emissions by 5 dB to 10 dB in comparison to conventional trains. In addition, sensors transmit precise values displaying the performance of the individual components in use. Note: SBB provides a workshop about automatic coupling on the first day of the Freight and Terminal Forum.

Digital Freight Train

Traxens has developed the Digital Freight Train. This new concept should turn conventional wagons into intelligent wagons in record time. This should contribute to enhancing the performance and attractiveness of rail transport in the freight transport market. Real-time data and on-time deliveries would be guaranteed with the digital freight trains.

The digital freight train includes geolocation and arrival notifications, consignment transport conditions and status monitoring, digital assistance for loading/ unloading, wagon management and predictive maintenance. According to the company, it offers a whole range of services for a safer, more modern and more efficient freight railway system. The company collaborated with French infrastructure manager SNCF in this project.


RailApp serves as a transaction and communications platform for the efficient cooperation between rail companies in their exchange of capacity. It is a hire and secondment platform for rail services and rail professionals at the same time.

“When assigning a job, qualifications/certifications will be checked ensuring that only 100 per cent qualified professionals can be assigned”, the company explains. The system is fully compliant with the safety policies of the individual companies.

Innovation Awards

Next to the RailFreight Innovation Award, six more Innovation Awards will be announced at RailTech Europe. The general RailTech Innovation Awards include four categories, being the Infrastructure Innovation Award, the Rolling Stock Innovation Award, the IT Innovation Award and the Public Transport Innovation Award. In addition, there is a Startup Award and an Industry Choice Award, chosen by the industry.

The award ceremony takes place during the RailTech Awards-dinner on 26 March at the Nicolaïkerk in Utrecht. Access to the RailTech Awards dinner is included with a ticket to RailTech Europe or the Freight and Terminal Forum. For a more detailed programme, you can visit the website.


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