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New approaches are needed to help to manage that conflict.In this chapter, which continues to develop Theme C, we introduce a number of these approaches to “problem solving” each able to contribute in particular ways to deal with the complexities of modern society. Delivering a truly integrated outcome depends on a comprehensive understanding and framing of the problem during the earlier phases, in order to deliver an effective output when applying the SID3 framework throughout the project lifecycle.
More and more, systems engineering is being adopted in the transport industry due to its ability to capture client and stakeholder needs, develop capabilities, improve processes by articulating physical and functional outcomes from a system, and synthesise the requirements of a system and its components early in the project life cycle.
The benefit of starting at the beginning of the project life cycle is that a valid solution is found the first time around and can be matured from early feasibility through multiple concepts and then final design.
Set for completion by the end of 2018, Thameslink will see a massive 24 trains per hour (tph) travel along the route and the introduction of complex digital train railway operations technology with the use of ETCS Level 2 on a mixed traffic corridor.
Implementing digital railway technology is essential to the efficient ordering of trains to safely achieve management of 24tph is achievable.
Understanding this challenge is critical to developing the right solution and cultivating innovation to deliver end-users and stakeholders the benefits of increased capacity, efficiency and productivity of our transport systems.
Traditionally, while we have learned to tackle difficult and complicated problems by dissecting our subjects into parts to understand them better, the rising complexity of transport systems and the impacts of new technologies makes the strong case for a ‘systems approach’.“Crucial to achieving this is understanding user needs and stakeholder requirements.Much of humanity’s efforts in the developed and developing world aim to overcome the “problems” created by changes in science, technology and the effects of these on society.“Inevitably this lends itself to a greater level of innovation, and allows for informed decision making between trade-offs, that supports identification of an optimal and integrated outcome.” Comprehensive systems frameworks like the SID3 approach – so named for the three components: Develop, Define and Deliver – can be applied holistically, individually or developed bespoke on a project.Since a good systems approach starts early in the project life cycle, the ‘Develop’ stage should be aimed at understanding and clearly defining outputs to deliver a clear ‘Road Map to Success’.The systems approach involves integrating as many of these interests into the overall solution.“As we embark on larger and more complex projects dedicated Systems Engineers can translate the purpose and drivers for a project into the system’s functional and physical requirements and then integrating the sub-systems to deliver the desired outcomes which allows discipline engineers to focus on their area of expertise,” adds Mr Megaw.Network Rail’s Greater West Programme (formerly Great Western Route Modernisation) aims to deliver a significant improvement in the performance, capacity and connectivity across the Western and Wales Routes.Systems engineering and integration was successfully applied to a combination of programme management, systems engineering and stakeholder communication tools and techniques to support programme integration across industry stakeholders.The bespoke system was tailored to the specific technical, operational and functional context of the project, ensuring effective and efficient integration management to support cohesive delivery.The implementation of systems engineering internationally on rail projects like Thameslink and Great Western Upgrade in the United Kingdom has helped pave the way for Australian systems projects such as the Southern Program Alliance and QR ETCS Level 2.