Seeking Volunteers: Land Transportation Projects

8 June, 2020 | Member Updates, Railroad & Mass Transit
Article by Gary Touryan, IEEE VTS VP—Land Transportation
The VTS Land Transportation Division actively manages the development of transit and rail standards through Working Groups organized by subject matter experts.

These standards are used by transit and rail agencies in the United States and Canada for the design, manufacturing, construction, installation, testing, commissioning, and maintenance of transit and rail systems.

Over the last 18 years, our core of volunteers have been working diligently on writing new standards and, most importantly, updating the existing standards to make sure that the standards continue to be useful for the industry application and do not expire after ten years.

These new consensus-based standards improve and supplement the existing standards for the transit and rail industry. The core group of professionals consists of representatives from broad areas in our industry: agencies, consultants, vendors, manufacturers, and suppliers.

VTS Working Groups create standards in the following areas:

Overhead Contact Systems (OCS)
The OCS develops standards through consensus of key industry representatives from private and public sector. These standards are adopted and adhered to by those associated with the rail and trolley bus industry.

Traction Power Systems (TPS)
The TPS develops standards, recommended practices, and guides; coordinating with APTA and AREMA, and within IEEE; providing up to date information on professional activities of interest to rail and transit industry; and soliciting recommendations, ideas and suggestions that would improve the industry practices.

CBTC/Signals is establishing a set of performance and functional requirements necessary for enhancing performance, availability, operations, and train protection using a CBTC system. Additional standards in Train Control are also maintained.

Railcar Transit Vehicle (RTV)
The RTV is responsible for standards intended to provide a set of uniform design, application, and test requirements for rail vehicles.

OCS’ first meeting of the year occurred 4 – 5 February 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia, hosted by the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA). The first CBTC/Signals meeting of the year was held 19 – 20 February 2020 in Jacksonville, Florida. The TPS Spring meeting was scheduled for 29 – 30 April 2020 in Los Angeles, California, with LA Metro as hosts. However, since March 2020 our Working Groups have conducted their activities through virtual meetings.

The 2020 Joint Rail Conference (JRC) was to be held in St. Louis, Missouri in April 2020. However, due to the COVID-19 crisis, the Operating Committee decided to postpone the event, and reschedule it for 2021 at the same venue.

The Ad Hoc Committee on Electrical Railway Systems was planning the second edition of the Electrical Railway Workshop together with the Vehicular Power and Propulsion Conference 2020, which is currently scheduled for 26 – 29 October 2020 in Gijón, Spain.

We encourage everyone to check out the Transportation Systems column in the IEEE Vehicular Technology Magazine, covering the latest advances in land transportation news and technical articles.

Anyone interested in participating in VTS Land Transportation Division activities please contact Gary Touryan.

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