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Burns Advises Northeast Corridor Rail Operators, Advancing Next-Generation Train Controls

February 27, 2023

Burns is consulting Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) on development of the rail operators’ Advanced Civil Speed Enforcement System (ACSES).

The next generation of train controls, known as ACSES III, imagines enhancing the precision and reliability of current safety measures. When ground-based transponders are missed, an on-board database will provide supplemental updates on rail conditions such as speed limits or interlocking signal information. Presence of an on-board database allows for future system upgrades, potentially improving operational efficiency and maintainability.

Burns is supporting SEPTA with development of an on-board ACSES database proof-of-concept. In collaboration with SEPTA’s on-board system suppliers, the pilot project will develop technical specifications to ensure interoperability with Northeast Corridor rail operators.

As a Positive Train Control (PTC) maintenance consultant, Burns is also facilitating the standardization of future ACSES implementations. Burns currently leads a Northeast Corridor standards working group as ACSES subject matter experts.

In 2023, Burns anticipates tremendous progress toward achieving ACSES III, continuing the industry’s advancement in rail system safety and reliability.

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Photo courtesy of Montgomery County Planning Commission

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