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Incentives for travellers to use quieter trains

Incentivising quieter services will improve utilisation of all services and aid the smooth running of whole network

03 August 2020
Image: CC.2.0 Courtesy RM
Image: CC.2.0 Courtesy RM


Esoterix Systems, a Bristol-based intelligent mobility company, has secured £380,000 funding to accelerate the development of technology that will underpin fairer fares on rail.

The Department for Transport has awarded the grant through Innovate UK as part of the First of a Kind in Rail 2020 competition.

This project will advance machine learning algorithms to reward regular travellers who exercise flexibility in their schedules to use quieter trains. Under the current model, season ticket holders have carte blanche to use any train, irrespective of how busy trains are. Incentivising quieter services will improve utilisation of all services and aid the smooth running of whole network. 

Rail will form the backbone of the UK’s low-carbon, multimodal transport network needed to meet the Government’s 2050 net zero emissions target. But expansion is slow and optimising use of the existing network is essential to accommodate passenger growth.

'This funding will accelerate our work towards a fully automated and scalable product,' says David Stewart, CEO. 'We are excited about the potential of this project to make a contribution to a new era in railway ticketing.'

The project kicked off on 1st July.

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