Accelerating digital transformation in rail
How UK Power Networks Services achieved 99.99% network availability for High Speed 1 through remote monitoring of electrical assets and prescriptive analytics.
High Speed 1 (HS1) is the 109km rail line between St. Pancras International station in London and the Channel Tunnel that connects the international high-speed routes from London to Paris, Brussels, and Amsterdam, as well as the domestic route from London to Kent. HS1 is one of the country’s largest ever civil engineering projects and, with maximum speeds up to 300 kph, the UK’s only high-speed railway. HS1 Ltd. is a consortium that has been entrusted with a 30-year concession to own and operate the HS1 line.
UK Power Networks Services, contracted by HS1 Ltd, is responsible to ensure the reliability of the rail line’s electrical infrastructure. They are responsible to finance, design, construct, operate, maintain and renew the electrical infrastructure of the HS1 line. UK Power Networks Services is part of a distribution network operator that owns and maintains electricity cables and lines across London, the South East and East of England.
In 2017, UK Power Networks Services decided to modernize its supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system to better support HS1 operations. After more than 20 years of service, UK Power Networks Services considered that their SCADA solution could pose a potential risk to operations and opted for preventative intervention. Some considerations included:
- MULTI-VENDOR: Legacy system was comprised of multiple vendors’ solutions.
- END-OF-LIFE: Many physical assets were approaching end-of-life.
- OPERATIONS: Implementation would need to be executed without interrupting service.
- 99.99% network availability
- 24/7 power supply for 26 million passengers
“We add value to HS1 by ensuring the safety, availability and reliability of power supply to the trains 24/7. We work on the front line every day, but also work to optimize the network to make it more efficient in the future, which critically means our teams can interact with the infrastructure remotely, minimizing trackside works.”