Standards and tools for eco-efficient rail vehicle design
Conference contribution, 2004
Through the EU-project REPID the railway industry takes a big leap forward, towards a solution to the issue of introducing Design for Environment (DfE) in the development of the future rolling stock. The REPID (Rail sector framework and tools for standardising and improving usability of Environmental Performance Indicators and Data formats) project is an implementation of the successful FP5-project RAVEL (RAil VEhicLe eco-efficient design). Both UIC and UNIFE are partners in REPID, with the aim to reach a practical agreement on a set of Environmental Performance Indicators (EPIs), a practically useful and common material list, and an open data format for data exchange. The standardisation of EPIs and data format within the railway industry is a prerequisite to achieve meaningful and comparable measurement and communication of environmental performance.
In the REPID project a design supportive software application is implemented by SEMCON Sweden. This application is used to analyse eco-efficiency of the design of trains and train-components, in terms of the standard-EPIs. The application can be integrated with existing product management systems, which is a prerequisite to achieve a widespread acceptance of its use in the daily work. In the REPID project, integration with the CAD-tool CatiaV5 has been used as a showcase. The basis in the REPID methodology is the common EPIs for communication and measurement of environmental performance. The common set of defined indicators is based on the policies of the rail operators and manufacturers. The EPIs provide support for both external communication of environmental requirements and performance between customers and suppliers, as well as internal communication between different functions within the company. For each design project, environmental targets expressed in terms of quantitative target values of the indicators are set for the product. These target values can then be compared to calculated values of the actual environmental performance for the design. The quantitative measurements of the environmental performance are based on the well-defined common material properties for all the materials in the standardised material list. These material properties are aggregated according to calculation rules that are specified for each indicator.
The material list and material property definitions have been developed through a systematic procedure and data management process by the Department of Industrial Environmental Informatics (IMI) at Chalmers University of Technology. The material property data needed for the calculations have also been acquired in accordance with a data management process including documentation, review and quality assessment. IMI is also responsible for maintenance of the DfE-methodology.
By using the standardised EPIs and data format the railway industry takes a giant leap towards better environmental performance and will continue to walk at the head of eco-efficient transportation.