The Netherlands: Improving Transport Infrastructure
Old Infrastructure, New Tricks
Europe has very little open space where new development can take place. For countries looking to expand transportation systems, this poses a familiar question: How can more be done with less?
One answer was recently found in the Netherlands, where the amount of people who rely on trains every day is expected to increase by 30 percent by 2030. ProRail, the organization that manages the state's rail infrastructure, needed a way to accommodate this surge in traffic without building a single track—at least, a single physical track.
With the most obvious solution ruled out, ProRail decided to analyze its capacity problem from a different vantage point. To do this, it built a virtual representation of its current network—an increasingly popular tool known as a digital twin. Used to replicate both natural and built environments, digital twins modernize the way that organizations capture and visualize data in real time.
Digital twins have been used by Vail Ski Resort to expand its snowmaking capabilities, by engineers to recognize threats to the supply chain, by design firms to improve the airport experience, and to solve countless other problems in all kinds of industries across the globe.
ProRail's digital twin offered many ways to improve efficiency, beginning with its maintenance protocol. A dozen trains pass over the same location every hour—meaning even one outage can snowball into a major disruption. ProRail's digital twin identifies the minimum amount of track closures needed to conduct maintenance in the safest way possible, keeping more tracks open and more trains running to handle the growing number of passengers.
How to Get On Board
ProRail's maintenance solution is just one example of how geographic information system (GIS) technology-powered digital twins are contributing to innovation across the globe, in organizations of all shapes and sizes.
Nearly any project or initiative can be accelerated through the use of this tool. Whether your work supports the future of smart communities, sustainable development, or next generation network management, digital twins and Esri technology can get you there faster.
Read more about GIS and digital twins.
Visit the Esri in Europe page to explore more client success stories.
Fill out this form to contact your local Esri office. We look forward to hearing from you.