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CANopen in Chinese light trains

Published 2012-02-03

In December 2011, Selectron (Switzerland) organized a CANopen seminar in Beijing dedicated for rolling stock manufacturers. CSR Nanjing Puzhen Rolling Stock and CNR CRC presented their solutions using the CANopen-based TCMS (train control and monitoring system) provided by the Swiss company. The control systems use redundant PLCs programmable in IEC 61131-3 languages. The “strong” (default) vehicle control unit and the “weak” (warm stand-by) controller crosscheck their “Heartbeats”. The Heartbeat is a special CANopen service to indicate the device status and its availability.

DURING THE SEMINAR, the TCMS manufacturer introduced its Concerto series of tools including a configuration and maintenance software. There is also data-logger hardware available. These products complete the tool portfolio such as the CAP1131, the TOP1131, and the MaestroPro development software.
CSR is using CANopen since 2006 in several Chinese metro trains. In some projects a CAN-Powerline inter-coach network is installed, e.g. in the six-coach trains in Nanjing. CNR CRC has equipped the Changchun rail vehicles with a CANopen network using repeaters and bridges. Some sub-systems such as HVAC and door controllers are connected to CANopen by means of EIA 485 gateways.
The TMCS hardware is as the other devices by Selectron compliant with the EN 50155 standard. Besides PLCs and I/O modules, the company provides CANopen gateways for CAN-Powerline, MVB, and EIA 485. These products have been successfully installed in several trains and locomotives. Largest customer is Stadler (Switzerland) using the CANopen products in its Flirt train, for example. In some retrofit projects, the CANopen devices have been installed, too.

Infobox: "Metro Line 4 in Shenzhen"

CANopen gains increasingly acceptance in light rail vehicles due to its flexibility and support by different suppliers. Kangni, the Chinese manufacturer of rail coach doors, offers since several years its products with CANopen interfaces. The company located in Nanjing has developed the door control hardware based on digital signal processors (DSP) from Texas Instruments using the CANopen protocol stack by Systec (Germany). The door maker manufactures also platform doors using CANopen.
CAN in Automation (CiA) has submitted CANopen to IEC for international standardization in the TCN (train communication network) series. The related standard IEC 61375-3-3 is currently in the FDIS (final draft international standard) state and is expected to be released beginning of 2012.
Selectron supplies its CANopen devices also to Tüvasas in Sakarya (Turkey), which has won the contract to produce 20 sleeper cars for the Bulgarian National Railways. The devices will be integrated in the TCMS, which includes train communication as well as sub-systems controlling HVAC (heating ventilation, and air-conditioning), doors, and lighting. The engineering will be done by the Turkish Medel company.

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