Železničná spoločnosť Cargo Slovakia, a.s. is one of two newly established successor companies, which were established on January 1, 2005 by dividing the original operator of passenger and freight carrier – Železničná spoločnosť, a.s. Its activities continue the 170-year history of railways in Slovakia. Its founder and main shareholder is the Slovak Republic, on whose behalf the Ministry of Transport and Construction of the Slovak Republic.
XMatik®/TMS for Železničná spoločnosť Cargo Slovakia, a.s.
Unique expertise of SFÉRA
Experience of analytical, development and technical support team of SFÉRA, a.s., is unique in the energy segment of railway transport in Slovakia. Its experience results from the deployment and operation of energy dispatching systems in three key railway companies:
- Železnice Slovenskej republiky, railway infrastructure manager and operator,
- Železničná spoločnosť Slovensko, a.s., provides passenger transportation,
- Železničná spoločnosť Cargo Slovakia, a.s., provides freight transportation.
In addition, Železnice Slovenskej republiky is also responsible for the realisation of activities as electricity distribution system operator. In this case, SFÉRA not only collects, processes and evaluates data, but also realises complex invoicing processes for distribution of traction of electricity for carriers.
A unified view on energy management creates a precondition for effective management of the state railway transportation portfolio as a whole.
For carriers, it brings cost savings to the highest cost items – electricity for traction and diesel for traction.
Initial situation in 2019
The annual costs of energy inputs for provision of electricity and diesel for traction for rolling stocks, represent for the national freight carrier Železničná spoločnosť Cargo Slovakia, a.s., (ZSSK CARGO) up to 25% of the company's total annual costs.
A continuing trend in increasing costs for electricity for traction and diesel for traction, as well as growing competition in freight transportation, has led freight carrier ZSSK CARGO to need to reduce traction energy costs and improve monitoring and measurement of processes.
To achieve the goals, ZSSK CARGO focused on 3 key areas:
- Implementation of time tariff bands in consumption of electricity for traction in order to reduce the traction of electricity costs.
- Renewal of rolling stocks for relocation to railway depot and repair shop and remotorization of rolling stock in order to reduce energy consumption and increase operational reliability.
- More effective exploitation of wagons with the implementation of a system for their monitoring and gradual implementation of monitoring tools on freight wagons with a target number of 5,000 units by 2021.
Electric power dispatching
INTRODUCTION OF TIME TARIFF BANDS AND ELECTRICITY FOR TRACTION COSTS SAVING.
By using the electricity power dispatching system, it was possible to combine data of train timetable and consumption of individual locomotives. Based on this data, a consumption diagram was created, which helped us to choose a form of electricity for purchase. Selected purchasing model reflects actual daily market demand for electricity and as a result we show significant savings for electricity for traction.
One of the tools to reduce the cost of electricity for traction was trading negotiations with electricity suppliers. The basis for these negotiations was the electricity consumption curve (see diagram) after traction generated by the XMatik®/EMS system. The curve was based on measured data from electrometers installed at rolling stock and took into account data from 2017 and available measurements for 2018 (until preparation of price negotiation with the supplier).
The result of the negotiations was the division of one electricity price into separate prices within the agreed tariff bands, while the price for the tariff zone at night was significantly lower than the original price charged during 2018.
After agreeing on the price for the supply of electricity for 2019, ZSSK CARGO began to move its services to night, more cost-effective tariff bands. The XMatik®/EMS electricity dispatching system module was used to evaluate which locomotives are advantageous to move in this band. The module combines the planned traffic timetable with the measured consumption of rolling stock on individual routes. Based on this, it is possible to determine the energy intensity of the locomotive and assess the expected level of benefit in terms of price savings when moving to another tariff band.
In 2019, with this approach, the carrier achieved savings in electricity for traction consumption of 0.5 mil. eur.
DIESEL FOR TRACTION SAVINGS AND EFFICIENT DEPLOYMENT OF TRACTION ROLLING STOCS.
For the individual performances of diesel traction locomotives, we also rely on the output sets of diesel dispatching, which are used for more efficient deployment of traction rolling stocks for train/shift use. The result is real savings in diesel for traction, as well as the detection and elimination of inefficient performance.
With the general decline in transport performance in 2019, the carrier had more options to optimize the use of rolling stock based on the evaluation of the ratio of performance and operating costs (savings).
With the XMatik®/FMS diesel dispatching system, on the basis of continuously calculated specific consumption data of specific rolling stock for individual driving modes, it was possible to determine which rolling stocks are the most suitable for individual types of performance. Using diesel dispatching, the carrier also identified rolling stocks that have been standing for a long time with a running engine. By eliminating downtime in this mode, it was possible to achieve further savings in diesel consumption.
Diesel dispatching had a positive effect on prevention. Based on a detailed analysis of diesel dispatching, we could reduce consumption by up to 10% for the monitored period by appropriate deployment of a specific rolling stock for performance.
One of the effective tools thanks to which the state carrier achieved savings in diesel for traction in 2019 is the implementation of an information system for diesel dispatching (FMS). With the implementation of the FMS, as well as other deployed measures, TMN savings of approximately 1 mil. EUR was identified for the year 2019.
CONSUMPTION REDUCTION OF ELECTRICITY FOR TRACTION AND DIESEL FOR TRACTION
By using data based on real performance and publicly available average prices of electricity for traction and diesel for traction, it is possible to easily quantify the benefits of the implementation of an energy dispatching system.
In some cases, a return on investment in the system is possible after the first year of its use. In the coming years, the user can fully benefit from the savings in consumption of energy for traction.
Annual report of the company Železničná spoločnosť Cargo Slovakia, a.s., for years 2016-2019.
Average prices of electricity for traction EUROSTAT.
Average prices of diesel for traction Statistical office of Slovak Republic, average fuel prices, monthly.
MANAGEMENT OF CONSIGNMENTS AND WAGON MAINTENANCE
Monitoring is a new tool for efficient management of consignments and locomotives across Europe, as well as setting up optimal maintenance and providing up-to-date online information to customers. Expected benefits of this tool are also reduction of the total costs for the operation of freight locomotives, the optimization of locomotives circulation, and thus its better use, as well as the identification of damage. With the full deployment of the wagon monitoring and control system, it will be possible to achieve significant economic and operational benefits for the company.
In 2019, the company implemented measuring tools and implemented a wagon monitoring system. The aim was to increase the use of wagons and shorten the delivery time of consignments.
The XMatik®/WMS wagon monitoring system collects data from the moment when the first measuring tool is installed. Through alarms, the company was able to identify long-standing wagons and, on that basis, to react operatively and request acceleration of realisation of processes related to wagon exploitation (such as loading, unloading, preparation of documentation).
In addition to the position sensors, measuring units also contain impact sensors. The impact sensor identifies impacts, which can cause damage to the wagon. The main benefit of this measurement is the reduction of wagon repair costs of damages caused by a third party. The data also serve as a basis for negotiation in case of a complaint.
Other services and system development
The EMS, FMS and WMS solutions are proprietary products of SFÉRA, a.s., provided as an out-of-box solution. It is a complex solution for the customer from installation, system prophylaxis, operation support, including further development. The system can be tailored to the customer's requirements. We have experience with integration of the system into various information systems, such as e.g. SAP, VDS, PIS, KASO, ISP, PBI etc. The solution architecture is open to integration for any system.