5G for resilient and sustainable operation of FRMCS railroad radio systems
The Franco-German innovation project 5G-RACOM investigates solutions for the efficient, reliable and sustainable use of the future railroad mobile communication system FRMCS (Future Railway Mobile Communication System) and the associated frequency spectrum. FRMCS is considered the successor to GSM-R and will ensure high-performance, real-time wireless communications between trains and infrastructure based on 5G technologies. The European Commission has provided railroad infrastructure managers with 2x 5.6 MHz of bandwidth in the paired FDD spectrum at 900 MHz (band n100) for FRMCS and also an additional 10 MHz of bandwidth in the 1900 MHz TDD spectrum (band n101). The additional bandwidth is an important prerequisite for the envisaged digitization and automation of railroad operations.
5G-RACOM has three objectives for a resilient and robust FRMCS system design: (i) radio propagation and channel modeling studies in different railroad operational scenarios of the future FRMCS system, including but not limited to. high-speed lines, tunnels, rural areas; (ii) coexistence studies of GSM-R and FRMCS at 900 MHz and prototype development for technology migration implementation; and (iii) the study of solutions for hybrid FRMCS networks in which the railroad operational radio system is complemented by public mobile radio, e.g., as a fallback layer or to temporarily increase capacity. The latter project objective focuses on the evaluation and demonstration of different multipath approaches for parallel operation while meeting the quality requirements of critical railroad operations applications.
FRMCS, as a European harmonized railroad radio standard, provides an important contribution for the further development of the railroad sector towards more digitalization as well as automation and ultimately an increased capacity of railroad services. The innovations and prototype implementations from the 5G-RACOM project have the potential to accelerate the introduction of 5G-based FRMCS in rail transport and thus also contribute to more sustainability in the entire transport sector.
Germany: DB Netz, Kontron Transportation Germany, Funkwerk, TU Chemnitz, TU Ilmenau
France: SNCF Réseau, Kontron Transportation France, Siradel, IMT Atlantique, Université Gustave Eiffel, Railenium
5G, FRMCS, railroad radio, radio propagation models, coexistence of GSM-R and FRMCS, hybrid FRMCS networks, mission-critical communication
December 2022 - November 2025
Total budget: 4,5 m. €
Funding amount: 2,4 m. €