Platform Edge Technologies Ideation Event

Organised by Connected Places Catapult. Join us for an ideation workshop discussing safety at the interface between trains and platforms.
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Event finished: 29th November 2022

When and where?

Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy - TUCA Lugg Approach London E12 5LN
29th November 2022
10:00am - 3:00pm


This event is now complete

The Department of Transport (DfT), Connected Places Catapult, and Transport for London (TfL) are inviting industry and academia with experience across the transport sectors to TfL’s award-winning Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy (TUCA) in Ilford, London on the 29th of November for an ideation workshop.

Participants will discuss how innovation and technology can enable safety at the interface between trains and platforms throughout the London Underground. This interface is known throughout the industry as the Platform Train Interface (PTI).

We are keen to gain the perspectives from a broad range of experts and innovators to identify opportunities that can be brought to this space and develop approaches for maximising the future contribution of innovation sector to operators such as TfL.

London is the birthplace of rapid transit with the ‘Tube’ being the world’s first underground passenger railway. Opening in 1863 and becoming the first electrified metro in 1890, the Underground now provides a vital service by handling up to five million passenger journeys a day, transporting people conveniently and sustainably across the city.

The London Underground, and other metro’s have continued to evolve over time; to provide safer, more convenient, and efficient service for passengers. Despite achieving high levels of safety and performance, the PTI accounts for approximately half or all fatalities on the rail network in the UK. In an attempt to mitigate this risk, most new build Metro’s have introduced some form of platform edge doors (PEDs) (also known as platform screen doors).

Whilst PEDs are very successful, there are some challenges with their installation, especially when retrofitting them to some platforms where substantial civil works including strengthening of the platform are required.

Therefore, the Connected Places Catapult is working with the Department for Transport (DfT) to explore innovative solutions to provide safety for passengers at the platform train interface (PTI) in the absence of PEDs.

We are investigating the potential of innovative alternatives to PEDs that are more economical and sustainable with less reliance on heavy infrastructure.

There are however a variety of challenges to consider:

· The technology may need to operate within a driverless environment, and therefore meet high levels of safety, and reliability.

· Areas of further fundamental development may be required to develop the industry capabilities required to bring solutions to market. · Several solutions involve emerging technologies such as computer vision which introduces additional safety validation challenges compared to conventional detection. To accommodate this change, developments to practices may be required for testing, certification, and approvals.

· These solutions would result in bringing about change at the PTI with passengers. New methods and thinking may need to be developed to handle this change.

Through this ideation workshop, we seek to identify:

· Emerging innovative solutions that may help to resolve the challenges highlighted by our project.

· Where our challenges are shared across use case or sectors and opportunities to work together on resolving them.

· Current issues enabling the supply of innovation to the rail sector, and potential approaches to resolve this.

This event is ‘apply to attend’ you will hear back from us shortly after registration to confirm if your submission has been accepted.

We wish to note a point of clarification. The Connected Places Catapult issued an invitation to tender on 28 October 2022 to support this project, and we wish to clarify that this tender process is independent from this ideation session. Any attendance, or information shared at this ideation session will not form part of our assessment of responses to the invitation to tender titled “Solution development and delivery of demonstrations of technologies which provide an alternative to platform edge doors” procurement reference TSC001-DN640321-41154352.

If you have any questions, please reach out to: Howie Chau, Senior Systems Engineer


What's on when

Day 1
29th November
Registration & networking
Welcome and introductions
Ideation challenges
Tour of TUCA
Ideation session
Feedback session
Wrap-up and close