Fast Tracks

General context

The vision

Main-line and urban railway networks play a pivotal role in the economic growth of a country. High urbanisation rates in metropolitan areas have increased the demand for high-capacity rail infrastructures, which require an efficient interoperability among several systems and services; that calls for high standards of safety and reliability.

In turn, rail systems and services call for a high level of innovation in the telecommunications, and automation and control fields. In recent years, the technological progress has resulted in the development of systems for automatic train protection, operations and control that make use of different telecommunications standards and technologies.

The context

In recent years, traditional wireless networks have been playing a key role in supporting railway signalling systems. They run alongside the railway infrastructure and provide voice and data services for train control and operations, as well as emergency communications, video surveillance and protection, multimedia services and also passenger connectivity. However, the coverage of such wireless networks seems to be not efficient. That is either because they are not specifically developed for the railway infrastructure, or because they cannot be adapted to keep up pace with the dynamics, or meet the mobility requirements, of railway infrastructures. Therefore, train operators need to put in place broadband telecommunications networks, through heterogeneous technologies, whether fixed or wireless.

Fast-Tracks main objective

The FAST-TRACKS radio is an on-board reprogrammable radio that supports Wi-Fi, LoRa and LTE standards. It helps boost coverage across the train coaches and improves the speed, reliability and availability of your Internet access, so that you can make the most of your journey time. As you are travelling, you will have the chance to ping a reply to an email, send a few tweets, catch up on the latest news, or post on social media, with no struggle. Indeed, the FAST-TRACKS radio can seamlessly switch from a standard to another in order to ensure a high-speed continuous and reliable Internet connection.

The advantages of the FAST-TRACKS radio are:

Market innovation

High adaptability to the continuous evolution of wireless standards and cellular technologies.


In order to achieve the objectives of FAST-TRACKS project, an iterative implementation plan is organized over 24 months

December, 2017
Complete list of FAST-TRACKS radio requirements and prototype improvements
February, 2018
Selection of hardware and software development kits
May, 2018
Modular radio hardware prototypes
June, 2018
Final design of FAST-TRACKS radio hardware, firmware and software
September, 2018
Radio firmware and software prototypes
March, 2019
Integrated version of FAST-TRACKS radio certified
April, 2019
Marketing plan complete
May, 2019
Core sales tools complete
July, 2019
Core customer tools complete
September, 2019
Fast-Track radio integration and validation report