Leveraging Connected Highway Vehicle Platooning Technology to Improve the Efficiency and Effectiveness of Train Fleeting under Moving Blocks
Future advanced Positive Train Control systems may allow North American railroads to introduce moving blocks with shorter train headways. This research examines how closely following trains respond to different throttle and brake inputs. Using insights from connected automobile and truck platooning technology, six different following train control algorithms were developed, analyzed for stability, and evaluated with simulated fleets of freight trains. While moving blocks require additional train spacing beyond minimum safe braking distance to account for train control actions, certain following train algorithms can help minimize this distance and balance fuel efficiency and train headway by changing control parameters.