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2024-06-11 Cameron Patterson (Lancaster University)

Could Space Weather Delay Your Train? Modelling the Impacts of Geomagnetically Induced Currents on Railway Signalling Systems

Abstract: Track circuit signalling systems are widely utilised across the world, and their ability to accurately detect trains is crucial for the safe and smooth operation of a railway network. These systems use electric circuits to detect the presence or absence of trains in sections along a railway line, as such, they can be susceptible to interference from geomagnetically induced currents. We have developed a model to analyse the impact that space weather has on realistic sections of the railway using current industry standards, improving upon recent theoretical work. Results from the model of arterial routes in England and Scotland, including case studies of historical extreme events will be presented.