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16 December
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MERLIN Final Conference successfully held in Madrid

Almost 100 participants from across Europe attended the MERLIN Final Conference, which took place on 10 December 2015 in Madrid. Jointly organised by UNIFE, UIC and FFE the event was the opportunity for the project partners to present the final results and discuss the exploitation potential of the main outcomes with external participants.

Project Coordinator Andrea Demadonna from UNIFE opened the event on behalf of Mr. Philippe Citroën, UNIFE Director-General. He stressed the fact that MERLIN offered a concrete attempt towards increasing sustainability by reducing energy consumption in railways via a number of effective tools and real-life demos, in support of the agreement reached in Paris during COP21 this month. Moreover, Mr. Demadonna said that MERLIN not only delivered standalone results, but also solutions which will be integrated in the newly established Joint Undertaking, Shift2Rail, which is finally ready to begin official research activities.

Mr. Alberto García, General Manager of the Spanish Railways Foundation underlined the need to develop collaboration amongst the entities of the R&D value chain, so that the breakthroughs and findings from projects are correctly implemented by the users. In this sense, collaboration activities with stakeholders from all areas of the rail R&D network (especially final users) are desired.

Ms. Isabelle DeKeyzer presented the UIC position on MERLIN and reminded the participants that the project is part of a global approach to reduce the carbon footprint of the transport sector as its final objectives are the reduction of rail’s energy consumption. Ms. DeKeyzer stressed that ‘’the joint work of UNIFE and UIC has always been shaped by the search for the Nash optimum applied to all stakeholders, i.e. state and/or EU institutions, rail operators and infrastructure managers, and last but not least, suppliers. This theory stipulates that no stakeholder can achieve its individual optimum if the others cannot achieve theirs. Thus the optimum that is sought for is the optimum of the railway system”.

The morning Session then continued with the presentations of the main technical achievements including the Strategic Decision Making Tool (SDMT), the Railway Energy Management System (REM-S) and recommendations for market uptake, implementation, and standardization.

The afternoon session focused on a panel entitled ‘’Plugging Railways into the Grid’’, where representatives from the European Railway Agency (ERA), IMs, RUs and the industry developed a lively and interesting discussion moderated by Mr. Javier Goikoetxea from CAF on the future of MERLIN and of the energy and railways in Europe, including open points in standards/regulation, liberalisation of the energy markets, energy billing and R&D opportunities. The interactive session then continued with an Energy game which involved some of the participants to show the potential benefits offered by MERLIN solutions.

The Final Conference was closed by Mr. Demadonna and Mr. Goikoetxea who thanked all participants and successively partners were able to take part in a technical visit at the ADIF Energy and Traffic Control Center of Atocha station.

Click here to view the MERLIN Final Conference full presentation and below to watch the sessions of the event:

Welcome speeches
Session I part 1
Session I part 2
Session I part 3
Session II

The following videos summarize MERLIN project:

MERLIN – Introduction
MERLIN – Scenario 1 Alstom-SNCF-Reseau
MERLIN – Scenario 2 Siemens-Trafikverket
MERLIN – Scenario 3 CAF-ADIF-Renfe
MERLIN – Scenario 4 NetworkRail-Newcastle University
MERLIN – Scenario 5 AnsaldoSTS-NetworkRail
MERLIN – Conclusions

For more information on this project please contact Andrea Demadonna (andrea.demadonna@unife.org).

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