In railway networks, stations are probably the most critical points for interconnecting trains’ routes: in a restricted geographical area, a potentially large number of trains have to stop according to an official timetable, with the concrete risk of accumulating delays that can then have a knockout effect on the rest of the network. In this context, in-station train dispatching plays a central role in maximising the effective utilisation of available railway infrastructures and in mitigating the impact of incidents and delays. Unfortunately, in-station train dispatching is still largely handled manually by human operators in charge of a group of stations. In this paper we make a step towards supporting the operator with some automatic tool, by describing an approach for performing in-station dispatching by means of automated planning techniques. Given the mixed discrete-continuous nature of the problem, we employ PDDL+ for the specification of the problem, and the ENHSP planning engine enhanced by domain-specific solving techniques. Results on a range of scenarios, using real-data of a station of the North West of Italy, show the potential of our approach.

In-Station Train Dispatching: A PDDL+ Planning Approach

Cardellini M.;Maratea M.;Vallati M.;Boleto G.;Oneto L.
2021

Abstract

In railway networks, stations are probably the most critical points for interconnecting trains’ routes: in a restricted geographical area, a potentially large number of trains have to stop according to an official timetable, with the concrete risk of accumulating delays that can then have a knockout effect on the rest of the network. In this context, in-station train dispatching plays a central role in maximising the effective utilisation of available railway infrastructures and in mitigating the impact of incidents and delays. Unfortunately, in-station train dispatching is still largely handled manually by human operators in charge of a group of stations. In this paper we make a step towards supporting the operator with some automatic tool, by describing an approach for performing in-station dispatching by means of automated planning techniques. Given the mixed discrete-continuous nature of the problem, we employ PDDL+ for the specification of the problem, and the ENHSP planning engine enhanced by domain-specific solving techniques. Results on a range of scenarios, using real-data of a station of the North West of Italy, show the potential of our approach.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11567/1086626
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