Maths Workshop

The Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education hosted a Mathematics in Railway Industry Workshop on Friday 6 May 2016 at the University of Birmingham.

For many years, railway research has long adopted many mathematical treatises for improving optimisation and solution practices. However, recent pressing issues have demanded advanced mathematics to tackle ‘Big Data’, multi-body dynamics, coupling interaction, and multi-criterion optimisations in the rail industry.

Academia and industry experts attended the workshop to explore these pressing issues and problems; those of which still require advanced mathematical treatises in the railway industry. Key problems and issues were discussed, alongside ways to enable successful collaboration, which could potentially lead to better mathematical method and solutions.

Dr Terry Johnson, Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB), highlighted issues in aerodynamics and wheel/rail interface, Dr Gemma Nicholson, University of Birmingham (UoB), discussed issues in recovery and timetabling optimisation, Dr David Jaroszweski, UoB, spoke about rail crisis mapping due to climate change risks, and Dr Sakdirat Kaewunruen, UoB, talked about the concurring problem in railway track modelling and train-track interaction.

The event concluded with a technical visit to newly built Network Rail control facilities in Birmingham city centre.

Dr Sakdirat Kaewunruen, Senior Lecturer in Railway and Civil Engineering at the Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education, said:

“The workshop successfully bought together talented mathematicians and industry practitioners to review and solve practical industrial problems in the railway industry; which is an essential means that serve the public in their daily life activities. We have excellent feedbacks from the participants, who came from various sectors in the UK”.

The workshop has been financially supported by MI-NET (under the framework of European Cooperation in Science and Technology).