ARTC: Movement Planner Supporting Application (SAPP) & Train Information Board (TIBs)

  • 2023

  • Digital
    Apps and Software

Designed By:

Designed In:


ARTC operates a large rail network in Australia spanning 8,500km across five states using GE’s Movement Planner to deliver real-time dynamic planning of train movements. The Movement Planner Supporting Application and Train Information Board ensures the Movement Planner meets end-to-end business requirements as a design and technology solution.

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  • GE's Movement Planner was implemented by ARTC to replace traditional paper-based train graphs and assist in the planning of train movements. However, due to the diverse user types, train activities, procedures, and digital systems on the network, ARTC required additional functionalities, such as data entry capabilities to create/edit schedules, network constraints to manage throughput, Day of Operations view for tracking schedules, and visibility of train status and changes. The lack of these features resulted in ineffective scheduling of train crews and activities and was complicated for ARTC's customers to use and comprehend.

  • Two integrated ancillary applications were created to enhance visibility and control for the rail network. The Movement Planner Supporting Application (SAPP) provides a rail topology map and data entry facilitation for 24/7 operation of the NSW rail network. Network controllers can create/edit schedules, add rail events or route locks, and view track work or inoperative trains that limit network throughput. The Train Information Board (TIBs) provides real-time train data and forecasts across the Hunter Valley Network for ARTC customers and peer service providers, including interactive maps to view trains' positions and set relevant activities.

  • With SAPP, 100% of all manual scheduling processes were automated, improving efficiency and accuracy of operations, and transitioning 80% of Network Controller SMEs away from BAU work and onto business growth opportunities. This has resulted in more accurate and efficient planning of trains, increasing throughput and responsiveness. TIBs provides real-time train data for Hunter Valley Rail Network, improving forecasted arrival and departure times with updates every two minutes. It enhances safety through automated planning and enables ARTC Operators to schedule crews and activities on time, improving the ability to respond to unexpected changes and provide timely updates.

  • SAPP provides ARTC with the capability to create and modify nominal consists, which includes locomotives, wagons, maximum speeds, and schedule assignments. This feature is significant because the consist length impacts the speed allowed and the duration it takes to pass through populated areas. Furthermore, SAPP users receive notifications about critical updates across the network that necessitate immediate attention to adjust schedules. TIBs offer users a list view of all consists, and they can filter the list by status (arrived, delayed, or cancelled) or consist details such as location, activity, or train type. Users can view a consist's individual details, such as estimated and actual arrival times, for a more comprehensive view. The system refreshes automatically every 10 minutes to provide the most up-to-date information. SAPP is limited to certified network controllers for operation since they can alter schedules and consist configuration. However, TIBS was designed and built independently to give non-certified workers access to the network's information, allowing ARTC clients and other users visibility into the network's operations without granting them the authority to modify the schedules.