Track Machines Connected, short tmc, gets railway tracks and machines connected. The company is an innovative railway digitalization leader. They apply multi-disciplinary sciences to create unique software and hardware solutions and capture, measure, and optimize the status and conditions of railway infrastructures, track machines and maintenance fleets.

With a portfolio of cutting-edge sensors and track measurement solutions such as PosTG, tmRTG, tmENV, tmc brings digital track twins to life and correlate data on browser-based platforms and applications. tmc brings forth excellence while fully supporting a dedicated staff in the making of an easier, safer, and more efficient global railway network.

The company is based in Austria, headquartered in Linz, and have offices in Vienna and Delhi. tmc employs over 100 of the world’s brightest scientists, developers, project managers and railway digitalization enthusiasts. Their customers use tmc’s solutions across Europe, North America, Japan and Australia.

Interview with Jochen Nowotny, CEO of Track Machines Connected.

Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company?

Jochen Nowotny: To provide a fully-closed digital loop for railway infrastructure measurement and maintenance we offer: 

  • Assistance systems for track machines;
  • Our solutions turn the 170t-heavy track machines into highly efficient machines that are easy to operate;
  • Systems for track and fleet monitoring;
  • This allows for improved operation and maintenance planning because you’re informed of the condition of your tracks and can access this data from anywhere at any time;
  • Digital systems for track surveying.

We automate track surveying so that railway maintenance staff can work more efficiently, precisely and above all, safely without having to access the tracks in person. We make track surveying possible, without an impact on operations.

E.E: What about new products?

J.N: We are currently extending our digital systems for track surveying to include not only the making of digital track twins but enrich track information on many levels by collaborating with best-in-class providers of sensors and drones.

Beyond that, we have launched tmOS last year. tmOS is our platform and marketplace that merges the relevant data from all sources and provides you with a holistic view of the railway infrastructure. Fragmented data points are put together to create a bigger picture from which targeted measures can then be derived.

E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active?

J.N: Digitalization in track maintenance is at different stages depending on each country and railway network. While machine automation is at the very beginning, we are entering what Gartner Hype Cycle calls the “Slope of Enlightenment” in fleet-related applications. In infrastructure digitalization “computers” have been in use for decades, but the power and range of today’s possibilities is by far not exhausted at this point. As tmc, we are driving digitalization forward in all three dimensions. Railway networks are the backbone of railway transport, the greenest mode of transport, and the smooth running of the networks is essential for it to remain a competitive mode of transportation as well.

E.E: What can you tell us about market trends?

J.N: Everybody operating in the railway sector is aware of the massive knowledge drain that is happening due to the wave of retirement hitting the railway sector disproportionally hard. It cannot be compensated by hiring only. Bringing our sector to the digital age with cutting edge solutions is the way forward. We are convinced the railway sector will be a source of growth not just for us, but for all the countries investing in the rail sector. Its sustainability and the fact that there is new, cutting-edge technology ready to be employed, makes the railway industry an attractive one to be working for. We are ready to jump on this path of growth.

E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed?

J.N: As mentioned, we are working with the latest technology to digitalize, automate and survey railway infrastructure in terms of surveying it and making its maintenance easier and safer. So, the most innovative solutions we are working on are sensor fusion and AI for the automated track machine of the future.

E.E: What estimations do you have for 2023?

J.N: The railway market continues to learn how digitalization can help the railway industry. As an old industry with many regulations, change has been slow and steady in the past, but it will most certainly pick up speed. tmc is one of the founding members of the Digital Rail Solutions Alliance and together we continue to bring innovation and digitalization to the railway industry.