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Transport industry offers innovation combined with sustainability for seamless user experience

Transport industry offers innovation combined with sustainability for seamless user experience

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Industries across the board are making it their goal to offer more sustainable alternatives as they operate with a greener future in mind. The transport industry in particular is a key contributor and here we take a look at some of the steps organisations in the field are taking to make a change.

Unicard and Amdocs have collaborated to deliver integrated multi-modal ticketing for public transport users. The new solution, powered by Unicard’s account-based ticketing (ABT) system and Amdocs’ scalable, automated payment platform running on Amazon Web Services (AWS), will enable ‘tap-in, tap-out’ ticketing and smart, frictionless mobility for passengers.

Amdocs, a leading provider of software and services to communications and media companies, has announced a collaboration with Unicard, an established provider of smart ticketing and payment solutions to the public and commercial transport sectors, to create a seamless, integrated ticketing and travel experience for passengers using public transport services.

The new solution, powered by Unicard’s account-based ticketing (ABT) system and Amdocs’ cloud-based payment platform, will see passengers enjoying a simple, unified ‘tap-in, tap-out’ customer experience for ticketing and payments across various modes of transport spanning bus, rail, tram and micromobility services such as dockless bikes and e-scooters. The multi-modal solution can also be configured to enable multi-operator ticketing.

The aim is to encourage passengers to use sustainable forms of transport by removing the payment friction of switching from one mode of travel to another and providing real-time payment and charging updates.

Unicard’s ABT system supports contactless travel, facilitated by tokens in the form of smart tickets, smart cards, mobile apps or digital wallets, while the scalable, automated and API-based nature of Amdocs’ cloud-based payment platform – running on Amazon Web Services (AWS) and part of Amdocs’ Digital Brands Suite as-a-Service – allows for the quick and easy addition and integration of new mobility and transport service providers.

“Public transport is changing rapidly and Unicard is well placed to support the rollout of more diverse and sustainable integrated networks, particularly with the uptake of new modes of transport including dockless bikes and electric vehicles,” said Unicard CEO, Sean Dickinson. “Amdocs, with its global expertise in automation and customer experience, was the ideal partner to help us build this type of solution. This is the latest innovation from our portfolio of solutions designed to make public transport much more affordable and accessible.”

“We’re pleased to partner with Unicard to deliver this important initiative, which promotes sustainable and flexible travel options alongside a frictionless customer experience,” said Anthony Goonetilleke, Group President of Technology and Head of Strategy at Amdocs.

The Unicard-Amdocs solution is set to be rolled out to passengers in the UK initially, through partnerships with city regions, local authorities and other public administration bodies.

Also taking steps to offer a frictionless customer experience through innovative technology solutions is Siemens Mobility, as it contributes to the first hydrogen-powered trains for the Berlin-Brandenburg metropolitan region.

Siemens Mobility has been commissioned by Niederbarnimer Eisenbahn (NEB) to deliver seven two-car Mireo Plus H trains for the Heidekrautbahn network (RB27) in the Berlin-Brandenburg metropolitan region. Equipped with a fuel cell drive system and a lithium-ion battery, this second-generation hydrogen train provides completely CO₂ emission-free mobility.

“Today, traveling by train is by far the most climate-friendly way to travel,” said Michael Peter, CEO Siemens Mobility. “We are especially proud that our first order for a fleet of hydrogen-powered trains will also enable emission-free rail transport on non-electrified routes. Our Mireo Plus H is a next-generation hydrogen train that combines innovation with sustainability. Thanks to its long range, faster acceleration and state-of-the-art technologies, it will set new standards in zero-emission passenger transport.”

“We are proud to operate the Heidekrautbahn, the first rail network in the Berlin-Brandenburg region that will be using hydrogen fuel cell trains,” said Detlef Bröcker, CEO Niederbarnimer Eisenbahn (NEB). “With Siemens Mobility, Niederbarnimer Eisenbahn has an experienced and reliable partner at its side. The highly innovative hydrogen-powered trains are not only environmentally friendly, but also provide modern equipment and features tailored to the needs of our passengers. Moreover, the manufacturer’s direct involvement in maintaining the trains will ensure a high level of security regarding train availability. By operating a technologically and ecologically upgraded railway, we want to actively support the energy and transportation transition and make local public transport for commuter service and tourism more attractive.”

The Mireo Plus H is a highly advanced, second-generation hydrogen train featuring a hydrogen-powered traction system with 1.7 MW of traction power providing up to 1.1 m/s2 acceleration and a top speed of 160 km/h. In addition, the train has the lowest life cycle costs on the market and can be refuelled in just 15 minutes. The Mireo’s energy-saving and environmentally friendly design is based on its self-supporting, welded and integral lightweight aluminium construction. The train’s improved aerodynamics together with its energy-efficient components and intelligent electrical system management also help reduce emissions and the use of resources.

The two-car trains feature comfortably designed, spacious interiors. Passengers benefit from free Wi-Fi, dynamic real-time displays of passenger information, a specially designated family area and two multi-purpose areas with generous space for buggies, wheelchairs and up to 12 bicycles. The powered cars have three doors on each side that enable passengers in wheelchairs or with buggies to easily board or exit the train, even on lower platforms. A new signage design in the cars also facilitates speedy, uncomplicated and, above all, barrier-free passenger exchanges.

The use of hydrogen-powered trains on the Heidekrautbahn is part of a scientifically supported joint pilot project funded by the federal government and the states of Berlin and Brandenburg. The project is focused on setting up a regional, sustainable hydrogen infrastructure that also includes a hybrid power plant and a tank system. All train operations on the RB27 line are to be carried out exclusively with green – that is, regenerative and regionally produced – energy. By switching from diesel to hydrogen, Heidekrautbahn will reduce its annual CO₂ emissions by around 3 million kilos and save 1.1 million litres of diesel.

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