Ulm BetriebsCenter

Simulation of new proposed maintenance sidings with optimization of operating costs. Verification of proposed placement of maintenance sidings and its influence to the operation of Ulm railway junction.





DB Regio, AG


DB Regio, AG

Realization year:

2003-2005, 2007, 2009

Terminal type:

Maintenance Sidings



The planned project "Stuttgart 21" and the construction of high-speed railway line Stuttgart-Munich, have major influence on train sets maintenance operations in German land of Wuerttenberg. New operational concept of train set maintenance requires the maintenance capacities in the Ulm region to be largely extended. The solution to this problem seems to be the construction of brand new maintenance centre, replacing not used part of current marshalling yard.


Problems and study goals:

Villon Ulm

The design, location, placement of respective modules (IRA - internal cleaning, ARA - external cleaning, refuelling, etc.), as well as planned operation of new maintenance sidings have to be verified and properly adjusted prior to its construction. In the first simulation study the main focus was on the operation of the Ulm maintenance centre, investigating following problems:

  • Evaluation of module placement.
  • Verification of feasibility of proposed train timetable and train sets circulation.
  • Assessment of sidings utilisation.
  • Estimation of personnel number required to guarantee trouble-free operation.
  • Identification of infrastructure bottlenecks.

Since the operation of Ulm maintenance center has significant influence on the Ulm junction and vice versa, the investigation should not be limited to the maintenance center only, but has to include also other parts of the Ulm junction, as are marshalling yard, passenger station and connecting railway lines. Follow-up simulation studies therefore extended original simulation model to incorporate the missing junction parts. The main goals of these studies were in the examination of the whole junction operation, with special respect to the maintenance and passenger sidings.


Study results:

In the first simulation study, detailed simulation model of the maintenance center operation has been created, with the aim to verify proposed design of the centre (infrastructure, module placement, etc.) and its operation (various timetables, different organisation of operation, various number of personnel available, etc.). The simulation study revealed advantages and disadvantages of respective infrastructure and module placement proposals, verified given timetables and helped to estimate the number of required personnel.

During follow-up studies, the simulation model has been extended in order to allow the examination of whole Ulm railway junction - bringing insights into its operation and mutual influences especially between passenger station and maintenance sidings. Changes to the infrastructure layout and extension of external stabling (holding) sidings have been proposed, examined and justified. The operation of passenger sidings has been modelled into very detail as well - enabling for example to evaluate the operational consequences of the construction of fifth platform in the station.

Simulation studies of the Ulm junction made it possible to evaluate and improve the infrastructure design and the operation prior to the construction changes, saving enormous amount of financial resources.