In April, a demo project will kick off in the Netherlands, where autonomous rail noise remote sensing devices will be installed as part of the Noise and Emissions Monitoring and Radical Mitigation (NEMO) initiative.

The devices will in all likelihood be installed along a major railway near the city of Tilburg, where for a duration of at least two months the sound signals of various train types will be recorded. To that end, the researchers wil be installing sensing devices on both the rails and at close proximity to it.

The sensors on the rails serve to record noise while those along the track help determine the position of individual wagons. This should enable researchers to identify and isolate the sound emission levels of individual wagons. This information will be checked against data of infrastructure manager ProRail for verification purposes.

“Analysed data will be used to develop a protocol that can be applied for monitoring the sound emission of wagons on lines where restrictions apply to sound emissions, such as noise differentiated track access charges schemes and total cast iron brake block bans”, the NEMO project team writes. “The protocol will describe the technical specifications of the system, the accuracies of the components and the evaluation criteria for noise emission classification.”

Diesel locomotives in port of Valencia under scrutiny

NEMO, a research project funded by the European Commission, was set up to empirically gather information on emission and/or noice emitted by individual vehicles. One such demo projects was carried out in Rotterdam, where the technology was deployed to identify particularly noisy and polluting vehicles.

Several other demo projects are planned. In Florence, Italy, the team will measure the noise emitted by urban road traffic. A similar project will be carried out in the Spanish capitol Madrid, which also includes suburban road traffic. In Valencia, the emissions of diesel locomotives and cruise ships will be measured.