Rail Control Room-Signalling Control Systems

We were chosen to supply the hardware platform for the Bakerloo upgrade because of our rail experience and ability to provide an end-to-end service – including certification, rack integration and project management. This formed a low-risk strategy as part of a significant upgrade programme to improve the Transport for London passenger experience.

Peter Drake, Business Development Director, Captec


Transport for London (TfL) run the day-to-day operation of the Capital’s public transport network. The Bakerloo Line control system on the Underground needed to be replaced by a modern equivalent to address obsolescence issues. This involved the replacement of central computers with modern hardware. The new hardware will be used as the central hub of a network of site and communication computers, with its functions including indicating the current state of signalling, the live position of trains and general service data.

  • 1U System
  • 4U System
  • Intel Core i
  • Long Life BOM
  • Rail Certified
  • The Challenges:

    • Redesign and modernisation of central and logging computers, previously supplied by Captec and running 24/7/365 for over 20 years.
    • Computers positioned in the station equipment room directly above the track, so must be designed to minimise susceptibility to EMC interference caused by trains.
    • Meet 5 9s availablity, where downtime is less than 5.26 minutes per year.
    • Achieve reliable operation in fluctuating temperatures that can be experienced across rail networks.
    • Provide a holistic service including design, engineering, testing, certification, rack integration and installation.

    The Solution

    • Design and engineering of 1U and 4U computers for integration across four equipment room racks, while maintaining a similar architecture with enhanced functionality.
    • By engineering for minimal electric noise emissions, testing at our pre-compliance facilities and managing the certification process, the computers fully meet the EN 50121:2006 standard.
    • Architecture including dual computers, redundant power supplies, RAID storage and spares provisioning enables the computers to meet TfL’s 5 9s availability requirement.
    • Industrial components, including a power supply unit and motherboard with extended operating temperatures, secures a wide range of 0-55°C.

    The Outcome

    • From design and development through to certification and on-site installation, we managed the entire process to successfully roll out fully-integrated computers that meet the stringent requirements of the rail industry.
    • With an extended product roadmap, industrial components and rigorous testing, longevity and continuity of supply is fully optimised to 15 years.
    • Owing to the reliability and longevity of the computers previously supplied, TfL had high confidence in Captec as a technology partner.

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