Freight wagons to become a smart and connected mode of transport
Collaboration combines automotive expertise with knowledge of the rail transport sector
Digitalization of freight traffic essential for efficient logistics processes
“Digitalized freight wagons make logistics transparent, secure, and connected,” says Bernhard Bihr, president of Bosch Engineering GmbH
Abstatt/Olten – Smart trains will revolutionize freight traffic and logistics. Bosch Engineering is working with Swiss rail freight operator SBB Cargo to develop rail logistics into a connected transport system. The two companies have concluded a cooperation agreement that will see them jointly develop an asset intelligence system for rail freight traffic. This system enables SBB Cargo freight wagons to transmit data relating to their position and cargo to a central control center. As a result, the company can deliver goods more speedily and provide its customers with more detailed information. The collaboration brings together two capable partners: SBB Cargo is a leader in Swiss freight traffic, and as a provider of development services Bosch Engineering is the hub for all rail-specific applications within the Bosch Mobility Solutions division. “Using Bosch automotive technology to connect trains allows us to open up new possibilities for integrating rail freight traffic into the digitalized world,” says president of Bosch Engineering Bernhard Bihr. “A significant developmental leap is required if rail freight traffic is to ready itself for the future. This can be achieved only through innovation – the sort of innovation we and our partners from other sectors are jointly adapting for rail applications,” says Nicolas Perrin, CEO of SBB Cargo.
Asset intelligence for the railroad To turn freight trains into connected modes of transport, they are equipped with sensors that collect data on their current position as well as the condition of wagons and their cargo, including parameters such as temperature, air humidity, and shocks sustained. Connectivity hardware wirelessly relays this data to a server and makes it available online to the rail operator, enabling them to see where their wagons and goods are at any given time. As a result, organization of transport is faster and more efficient, logistics processes are optimized, and transportation costs are reduced. An anticipatory condition-monitoring feature notifies users of wear on components so that upcoming repairs can be planned well in advance and according to requirement. This reduces downtime, conserves resources, and saves money. What is more, geofencing and break-in alarm features ensure that the new system also provides additional security for the transported goods.
Innovative automotive technology and rail expertise For Bosch Engineering and SBB Cargo, this new collaboration agreement to develop a comprehensive asset intelligence system for rail freight traffic builds on their already successful collaboration. The first SBB cargo test fleet fitted with a connected condition-monitoring system has been operating on the Swiss railways since back in February 2015. Initial functions are being tested and refined. Bosch Engineering has specifically tailored connectivity technology taken from large-scale automotive series production to cater to the needs of this new field of application. The plan is to continue developing the technology and to incorporate new functions, with SBB Cargo contributing its experience in testing and rail standards to the collaboration.
Bosch Engineering GmbH is a wholly owned subsidiary of Robert Bosch GmbH and is headquartered in Abstatt, Germany. As a systems development partner to the automotive industry since 1999, the company offers development services for powertrains, safety and convenience systems, and electrical and electronic systems - from the original concept to series production. Specialized in electronics and software, it draws on Bosch's proven large-scale series production technology to develop tailored solutions for a wide variety of applications in passenger cars, commercial vehicles, off-highway and recreational vehicles, and in rail vehicles, ships, and industry. Bosch Engineering GmbH also coordinates all the Bosch Group's motorsports activities.
The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 360,000 associates worldwide (as per April 1, 2015). The company generated sales of 49 billion euros in 2014.* Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 440 subsidiary and regional companies in some 60 countries. Including its sales and service partners, Bosch is represented in roughly 150 countries. This worldwide development, manufacturing, and sales network is the foundation for further growth. In 2014, Bosch applied for some 4,600 patents worldwide. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to create solutions for a connected life. Bosch improves quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.”
*The sales figure disclosed for 2014 does not include the former joint ventures BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgeräte GmbH (now BSH Hausgeräte GmbH) and ZF Lenksysteme GmbH (now Robert Bosch Automotive Steering GmbH), which have since been taken over completely.
SBB Cargo stands for sustainable freight transportation by rail. Accounting for almost a quarter of all freight traffic in Switzerland, the rail freight operator is number one in the Swiss freight market, liberalized in 1999. The company employs around 3,000 people and operates more than 6,800 freight wagons in addition to some 500 traction vehicles. By working consistently to rail’s strengths, SBB Cargo was able to enjoy another good year in 2014, with profits of CHF 33 million and revenue of CHF 986 million. SBB Cargo offers secure, highly punctual freight transportation – and helps reduce road traffic sustainably and effectively. The rail freight operator supplies Swiss quality and creative solutions, and is always developing new businesses. As a result, it plays an important role in its customers’ success.
As is usual in the automotive supply industry, Bosch supplies these components to the automaker’s specifications. How these components are calibrated and integrated into complete vehicle systems is the responsibility of each automaker.
The current issue is not fundamentally about diesel. On the contrary, in combustion-engine engineering, modern diesel technology is the best principle, resulting in the lowest pollutant emissions. Modern diesel powertrains are indispensable for achieving European greenhouse-gas emissions targets. The diesel means protection for both the environment and the consumer.
Bosch develops injection and exhaust-gas treatment systems that can reduce emissions in every driving situation and operating mode – also at high speeds and when accelerating hard. Diesel remains a key technology for achieving global CO2 targets. Most importantly, Bosch believes that there is potential to further reduce the CO2 emissions from diesel engines by as much as 15 percent.
There is also significant potential for further reducing nitrogen-oxide emissions from diesel vehicles. For example, Bosch’s Denoxtronic allows a reduction of up to 95 percent, also in conditions not covered by the official driving cycle tests. Bosch remains committed to the diesel.
Contact person for press inquiries: Ebberg, Jörn phone: +49 711 811-26223
Mobility solutions: growth in weaker market environment
Groundbreaking development in battery technology for electric vehicles
Assistance systems: sales expected to reach one billion euros by 2016
Services: Bosch is connecting cars beyond the hood
Frankfurt/Stuttgart, Germany – The Bosch Group's mobility business is growing considerably faster than the global automotive market. “Bosch is assuming a leading role in the transformation that is about to sweep through the automotive sector. Automation, electrification, and connectivity – Bosch is already enjoying success in all three areas,” said Dr. Volkmar Denner, chairman of the board of management of Robert Bosch GmbH, at the International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt. The Mobility Solutions business sector is expecting sales growth in 2015 of around ten percent, or five percent after adjusting for exchange-rate effects1. In the same time period, global vehicle production will only increase marginally. One reason for Bosch's success is efficient combustion technology. This year, the supplier of technology and services will sell 15 percent more gasoline direct injection systems and ten percent more high-pressure diesel injection systems. Sales of ESP systems will also grow once again by a quarter. “Our innovative strength in all the mobility growth trends is helping us attract new customer groups and tap business opportunities beyond the automotive industry,” Denner said.
Mobility solutions: new customers, new services Whether for private or commercial vehicles, multimodal transportation offerings, fleet management, or smart transportation infrastructure, Bosch brings together vehicle technology, the data cloud, and services to offer complete mobility solutions. In the future, the customers for these solutions will include new market players such as Tesla, Google, two-wheeler manufacturers, and car-sharing providers. Bosch is also already working on specific projects with insurers, leasing companies, and other fleet operators.
Breakthrough in battery technology: solid-state cells for electric cars At this year's IAA, Bosch is presenting solutions and innovations in the growing fields of connectivity, automation, and electrification. Each year, Bosch invests nearly 400 million euros in turning electromobility into a reality. That this is bearing fruit was underscored by Denner, who presented a possible breakthrough innovation in battery technology. Having bought U.S. start-up Seeo Inc. (Hayward, CA), Bosch now possesses essential know-how in the area of innovative solid-state cells. This technology complements the developments the company has already achieved with its Japanese partners GS Yuasa and Mitsubishi Corporation. To date, the aim has been to double energy density and halve its costs by the end of this decade. With the Seeo technology, Bosch sees the potential to increase the energy capacity of lithium-ion cells even further. “Bosch is applying its knowledge and a great deal of financial resources to help electromobility achieve a breakthrough,” Denner said.
Automated driving: sales in the billions on the horizon In particular, the trend toward self-driving cars is already a major sales driver for Bosch. More and more new vehicles feature assistance systems such as lane-keeping support or emergency brake assist. Sales of radar and video sensors will once again double in 2015 for the second year in a row. This high demand means sales of Bosch driver assistance systems will exceed one billion euros as soon as 2016. As Denner explained, “Automated driving will arrive gradually by a process of developing and refining driver assistance systems.” The company has some 2,000 engineers working on this alone – a good 700 more than two years ago.
The company has also set itself ambitious goals for connectivity. Bosch technology is making vehicles an active part of the internet, but this development will go beyond cars in the future. Bosch already supports providers of car and bike sharing and operators of trains and buses with software solutions. It is in the services business where Bosch's versatility is particularly advantageous. The supplier of technology and services is in a better position than any other company in the automotive sector to connect mobility with energy, building, and industrial technologies.
1Since February 2015, Bosch Automotive Steering GmbH (formerly ZF Lenksysteme GmbH) has been consolidated as part of the Mobility Solutions business sector.
Contact person for press inquiries: René Ziegler, phone: +49 711 811-7639