What is this on the front of 350236? and do any other trains have these?

Status
Not open for further replies.

221101 Voyager

Established Member
Joined
17 Nov 2019
Messages
1,410
Location
Milton Keynes
I got a photo of 350236 at Wolverton the other day and noticed it had a little yellow box on the front of it, I was wondering if anybody knew what it was for?

I presume it might be something to do with track monitoring perhaps or maybe a backup headlight or maybe a camera to monitor and record what happens on the line ahead if the camera in the cab is broken.

Look forward to hear more about it as I've never seen one before.

The box can be seen next to the gangway obstructing the daytime headlight.
1613585549859.png
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

_toommm_

Established Member
Joined
8 Jul 2017
Messages
4,663
Location
Yorkshire
Some 150s or 153s a few years ago (I think on the HoW line) had a bigger setup to this to monitor the track and its condition. It may be something similar to this?
 

DBS92042

Member
Joined
13 Apr 2019
Messages
1,073
There was also one on the front of 350267 the other day so it looks like its not just a one off.
350267.JPG
 

O L Leigh

Established Member
Joined
20 Jan 2006
Messages
4,956
Location
In the cab with the paper
It's just the driver keeping his sandwiches cool.

Not really. It's a Nitwit Rail portable monitoring device containing a camera and GPS. They've been out and about in the Midlands especially with these over the past few days.
 

_toommm_

Established Member
Joined
8 Jul 2017
Messages
4,663
Location
Yorkshire
It's just the driver keeping his sandwiches cool.

Not really. It's a Nitwit Rail portable monitoring device containing a camera and GPS. They've been out and about in the Midlands especially with these over the past few days.

Possibly monitoring the banking on the WCML to watch for any more potential landslips?
 

CAF397

Member
Joined
28 Aug 2020
Messages
97
Location
Lancashire
Sometimes Pway or OLE engineers would frequently use cab rides to check the infrastructure.

Due to Covid, tight restrictions on having 2 people in cabs have caused this practise to end.

I've had a Network Rail engineer put a Go-Pro on my headlamp bracket which they will then review back on the computer, I wonder if this is the latest development to bypass cab-rides.
 

221101 Voyager

Established Member
Joined
17 Nov 2019
Messages
1,410
Location
Milton Keynes
There was also one on the front of 350267 the other day so it looks like its not just a one off.
View attachment 90908
Nice. :)
I wonder how long they keep them on the front for?

I shall have to look out for them on other 350s and see if I can capture some more as it's something unusual.

It's just the driver keeping his sandwiches cool.

Not really. It's a Nitwit Rail portable monitoring device containing a camera and GPS. They've been out and about in the Midlands especially with these over the past few days.
A very fine sense of humour there! :D


I did think it might have been for track monitoring and that turned out to be correct. Thanks for solving the mystery.



Possibly monitoring the banking on the WCML to watch for any more potential landslips?
A solid point there. Unlike the Down fast where the landslip occured!:rolleyes::lol:



Sometimes Pway or OLE engineers would frequently use cab rides to check the infrastructure.

Due to Covid, tight restrictions on having 2 people in cabs have caused this practise to end.

I've had a Network Rail engineer put a Go-Pro on my headlamp bracket which they will then review back on the computer, I wonder if this is the latest development to bypass cab-rides.
Interesting I never knew that.

That is a very clever way to get round covid restrictions.


With regards to GoPro's and other portable cameras, it would seem they are a new and innovative way to have a cab ride without actually being there!:D
 

A Challenge

Established Member
Joined
24 Sep 2016
Messages
2,646
Would this work as an ongoing solution, or is it better to actually have someone there so it will go back to 'normal' at some point - if not, is there another reason this hasn't been done before?
 

CAF397

Member
Joined
28 Aug 2020
Messages
97
Location
Lancashire
The cab rides by engineers would be S&T maybe checking signal sighting, Pway checking wet beds or lineside vegetation, or OHL engineers inspecting the overheads. They might have to do a cab ride once a week, or a set frequency.

I'd imagine when Covid is a dim and distant memory and cab protocols allow 2 in a cab (we haven't had any managers ride with us for nearly a year - all our assessments is done via downloads) then Network Rail will want to go back to cab rides. Unless their use of portable cameras has proved beneficial. The quick sight of an issue by eye in a cab can now be paused and rewound on a video in an office or at home.
 

O L Leigh

Established Member
Joined
20 Jan 2006
Messages
4,956
Location
In the cab with the paper
Nice. :)
I wonder how long they keep them on the front for?

They place them there for as long as is necessary to cover the section of route the engineers are interested in. Once they arrive at that point it gets taken off.

I shall have to look out for them on other 350s and see if I can capture some more as it's something unusual.

It's not just Cl350s, as it can be any traction that's covering that section of route.

The cab rides by engineers would be S&T maybe checking signal sighting, Pway checking wet beds or lineside vegetation, or OHL engineers inspecting the overheads. They might have to do a cab ride once a week, or a set frequency.

Could be, but the chap in orange who put one on the front of my train earlier this week was checking something else entirely. These boxes are basically just a tool for recording what would otherwise be visible out of the window.

I'd imagine when Covid is a dim and distant memory and cab protocols allow 2 in a cab (we haven't had any managers ride with us for nearly a year - all our assessments is done via downloads) then Network Rail will want to go back to cab rides. Unless their use of portable cameras has proved beneficial. The quick sight of an issue by eye in a cab can now be paused and rewound on a video in an office or at home.

I can see both sides of this, but I'm not sure it offers any great efficiency savings. The boxes are accompanied by a Nitwit Rail engineer who travels in the train, so there still has to be a member of staff on the train and, unless there's a facility to view the feed live on a laptop inside the train (something I didn't ask about) it still then has to be watched back in full later. On the plus-side, being a recording it can be stopped, rewound and watched more than once without the distraction of being in the cab, so give the option of greater level of scrutiny.
 

peakNed

Member
Joined
4 Jun 2020
Messages
25
Location
South East
I can see both sides of this, but I'm not sure it offers any great efficiency savings. The boxes are accompanied by a Nitwit Rail engineer who travels in the train, so there still has to be a member of staff on the train and, unless there's a facility to view the feed live on a laptop inside the train (something I didn't ask about) it still then has to be watched back in full later. On the plus-side, being a recording it can be stopped, rewound and watched more than once without the distraction of being in the cab, so give the option of greater level of scrutiny.
I suspect once all this covid stuff calms down NR will return to cabrides, but still take the yellow box of tricks with them.
If something is spotted by Bert in the cab, he makes a note of it. Later on back in the office, they can find it in the recording (without rewatching the whole journey) and scrutinise it in depth.
 

EdTorbett

New Member
Joined
8 May 2021
Messages
4
Location
Bristol
It's a new(ish) video recording system called AIVR Go (https://www.aivr.video/aivr-go/)! I wrote the software for them, and hopefully you'll start to see them popping up all over the place.

It's recording video and GPS and tying the two together so that the whole thing is easily watchable from a website and people can jump to where they're interested, compare with previously recorded footage, annotate and mark up the video and we also run some machine learning to spot some issues - currently we're running thermal cameras on the Brighton to Victoria line to automatically find hotspots on the conductor rail. TfW are also now starting to use footage recorded in-cab for driver training too, both because COVID's had such a big restriction on in-cab training and because they can easily show any part of the Wales without an hours-long field trip.

There's definitely efficiency savings, and safety savings too. There's been too many people hit and killed recently on live track and at least one TOC has stopped all red zone working as a result. Plus walking miles on ballast every day is an absolute nightmare on the knees and back.

Let me know if you have any questions, I'm happy to talk about it :)
 

Deepgreen

Established Member
Joined
12 Jun 2013
Messages
5,025
Location
Betchworth, Surrey
I got a photo of 350236 at Wolverton the other day and noticed it had a little yellow box on the front of it, I was wondering if anybody knew what it was for?

I presume it might be something to do with track monitoring perhaps or maybe a backup headlight or maybe a camera to monitor and record what happens on the line ahead if the camera in the cab is broken.

Look forward to hear more about it as I've never seen one before.

The box can be seen next to the gangway obstructing the daytime headlight.
View attachment 90898
It's clearly NOT obstructing the headlight - it's just the angle from which the shot was taken. Any headlight obstruction would obviously be prohibited. I imagine it's a camera.
 

Bald Rick

Veteran Member
Joined
28 Sep 2010
Messages
20,246
It's a new(ish) video recording system called AIVR Go (https://www.aivr.video/aivr-go/)! I wrote the software for them, and hopefully you'll start to see them popping up all over the place.

It's recording video and GPS and tying the two together so that the whole thing is easily watchable from a website and people can jump to where they're interested, compare with previously recorded footage, annotate and mark up the video and we also run some machine learning to spot some issues - currently we're running thermal cameras on the Brighton to Victoria line to automatically find hotspots on the conductor rail. TfW are also now starting to use footage recorded in-cab for driver training too, both because COVID's had such a big restriction on in-cab training and because they can easily show any part of the Wales without an hours-long field trip.

There's definitely efficiency savings, and safety savings too. There's been too many people hit and killed recently on live track and at least one TOC has stopped all red zone working as a result. Plus walking miles on ballast every day is an absolute nightmare on the knees and back.

Let me know if you have any questions, I'm happy to talk about it :)

Now that’s what is good about the forum, some actual answers from an actual person who is involved in the subject, rather than some speculation.

Welcome, and I hope your product is as successful as it deserves to be!
 

221101 Voyager

Established Member
Joined
17 Nov 2019
Messages
1,410
Location
Milton Keynes
It's a new(ish) video recording system called AIVR Go (https://www.aivr.video/aivr-go/)! I wrote the software for them, and hopefully you'll start to see them popping up all over the place.

It's recording video and GPS and tying the two together so that the whole thing is easily watchable from a website and people can jump to where they're interested, compare with previously recorded footage, annotate and mark up the video and we also run some machine learning to spot some issues - currently we're running thermal cameras on the Brighton to Victoria line to automatically find hotspots on the conductor rail. TfW are also now starting to use footage recorded in-cab for driver training too, both because COVID's had such a big restriction on in-cab training and because they can easily show any part of the Wales without an hours-long field trip.

There's definitely efficiency savings, and safety savings too. There's been too many people hit and killed recently on live track and at least one TOC has stopped all red zone working as a result. Plus walking miles on ballast every day is an absolute nightmare on the knees and back.

Let me know if you have any questions, I'm happy to talk about it :)
Nice! It's great to hear details about it from the experts who made it! :D

Here's a question - What if flies get splatted all over the lens?

I think the other person was merely using a descriptor to help us, the viewer, know where to look.
Yes, I was indeed just describing where it was. :)
 

EdTorbett

New Member
Joined
8 May 2021
Messages
4
Location
Bristol
Thanks for the welcome! It’s always nice to chat with other experts and enthusiasts in rail.


Here's a question - What if flies get splatted all over the lens?
We have a secret ingredient for this - Rainex! It turns out that it keeps the flies from sticking pretty well along with keeping it clear of water.

We’ve also spent some time getting the focus and exposure mechanisms right - we had a few blurry videos with only the flies in focus before we sorted that one :D
 

221101 Voyager

Established Member
Joined
17 Nov 2019
Messages
1,410
Location
Milton Keynes
Thanks for the welcome! It’s always nice to chat with other experts and enthusiasts in rail.



We have a secret ingredient for this - Rainex! It turns out that it keeps the flies from sticking pretty well along with keeping it clear of water.

We’ve also spent some time getting the focus and exposure mechanisms right - we had a few blurry videos with only the flies in focus before we sorted that one :D
Good solution!

LOL! :D
 

D365

Established Member
Joined
29 Jun 2012
Messages
8,768
We have a secret ingredient for this - Rainex! It turns out that it keeps the flies from sticking pretty well along with keeping it clear of water.

We’ve also spent some time getting the focus and exposure mechanisms right - we had a few blurry videos with only the flies in focus before we sorted that one :D
Is this similar to the systems used for onboard cameras in motorsports? Formula One and the like.
 

Domh245

Established Member
Joined
6 Apr 2013
Messages
8,070
Location
nowhere
Is this similar to the systems used for onboard cameras in motorsports? Formula One and the like.

Do you mean for focus, or for flies? In F1's T-Cams at least, they have a roll of clear film in front of the camera that scrolls down to move any flies out of shot.
 

EdTorbett

New Member
Joined
8 May 2021
Messages
4
Location
Bristol
Is this similar to the systems used for onboard cameras in motorsports? Formula One and the like.

We're not doing anything that complex here - in this case we make sure that when the camera performs its autofocus it prevents focussing on anything closer than about a meter. Because the bugs are so small and close to the camera lens, they end up so blurred that we can actually see past them with no noticeable effect on the image.
 

Ken H

On Moderation
Joined
11 Nov 2018
Messages
3,285
Location
N Yorks
It's a new(ish) video recording system called AIVR Go (https://www.aivr.video/aivr-go/)! I wrote the software for them, and hopefully you'll start to see them popping up all over the place.

It's recording video and GPS and tying the two together so that the whole thing is easily watchable from a website and people can jump to where they're interested, compare with previously recorded footage, annotate and mark up the video and we also run some machine learning to spot some issues - currently we're running thermal cameras on the Brighton to Victoria line to automatically find hotspots on the conductor rail. TfW are also now starting to use footage recorded in-cab for driver training too, both because COVID's had such a big restriction on in-cab training and because they can easily show any part of the Wales without an hours-long field trip.

There's definitely efficiency savings, and safety savings too. There's been too many people hit and killed recently on live track and at least one TOC has stopped all red zone working as a result. Plus walking miles on ballast every day is an absolute nightmare on the knees and back.

Let me know if you have any questions, I'm happy to talk about it :)
I needed some CT scans recently. The software that compares the 3d images can compare 2 scans done months apart, and show differences. I wonder if your software can compare 2 'tapes' of the same track and show differences?
 

O L Leigh

Established Member
Joined
20 Jan 2006
Messages
4,956
Location
In the cab with the paper
We have a secret ingredient for this - Rainex! It turns out that it keeps the flies from sticking pretty well along with keeping it clear of water.

The chap accompanying the box on the front of my train a few months back used the simple expedient of getting out at each stop and giving the cover a wipe with a (presumably damp) cloth.
 

adc82140

Established Member
Joined
10 May 2008
Messages
2,166
I needed some CT scans recently. The software that compares the 3d images can compare 2 scans done months apart, and show differences. I wonder if your software can compare 2 'tapes' of the same track and show differences?
This is my specialist area. The CT scans reconstruct at 1mm intervals. Obviously for each scan you'll be in a slightly different place on the table. Therefore we can't use table position landmarks for the comparison. What we do is use the Mark 1 human eyeball. We get the first series of images on the screen, lock the scrolling, then scroll the second set until the anatomy matches up. Then the lock is released on the first set, and when you scroll, both sets of images scroll together.
 

Ken H

On Moderation
Joined
11 Nov 2018
Messages
3,285
Location
N Yorks
This is my specialist area. The CT scans reconstruct at 1mm intervals. Obviously for each scan you'll be in a slightly different place on the table. Therefore we can't use table position landmarks for the comparison. What we do is use the Mark 1 human eyeball. We get the first series of images on the screen, lock the scrolling, then scroll the second set until the anatomy matches up. Then the lock is released on the first set, and when you scroll, both sets of images scroll together.
nice one. You a radiographer or computer guy?
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top