Artificial intelligence in Russian Railways. New format of video surveillance
Back in September 2019, the management of Russian Railways noted the key trends that are changing the overall appearance of the company’s railway transport and logistics. According to Evgeny Charkin, Director of Information Technologies at Russian Railways, the fundamental factors are automation, digitalization and artificial intelligence. And on October 5 of this year, an official statement was made about the introduction of software based on neural networks into the work of Russian Railways.
The innovative format of video surveillance at railway facilities provides a solution to various problems, the majority of which are directly related to marketing and security. We will talk about this today.
Tasks of intelligent video surveillance
The annual passenger traffic of Russian Railways is about 1 billion 200 million people. Accordingly, the tasks of intelligent video surveillance include two main categories:
- Security. We are talking about the safety of a huge number of people, the safety of trains and material values.
- Marketing. Here we can talk about collecting marketing data for work planning, including repair works, building a time table, issues of dynamic pricing and targeted advertising.
Detailed information on video surveillance in transport is available here.
The concept of “safety at Russian Railways” includes:
- provision of visual control of protected and controlled areas and optimization of this process;
- recording a video stream, including for the purpose of reconstructing a real picture of an event that occurred;
- identification of “loitering” in the surveillance area;
- identification of items and crossing borders/surveillance lines;
- monitoring the work of the company’s security personnel;
- monitoring the behavior of passengers inside the cars for the purpose of prompt intervention (if necessary);
- prevention of offenses, abnormal, alarming and emergency situations.
Facilities and surveillance areas on Russian Railways
Facilities and zones of video monitoring are:
- cars (external and internal control);
- railway crossings;
- train stations.
As a strategic facility, a train station can be divided into important video surveillance zones:
- entrance/exit to the building, in order to film, register and count incoming/outgoing citizens;
- entry into the adjacent territory for the purpose of filming, registering and counting arriving/departing vehicles and citizens;
- checkout areas and waiting rooms, in order to monitor the situation in real time, film abandoned items, crowds of people;
- platforms and tracks, in order to prevent the entry of unauthorized persons, as well as the fall of objects or people.
Artificial intelligence in Russian Railways allows for predictive video surveillance and situation analysis with minimal involvement of the human factor. In addition, the presence of cameras has a positive effect on the human psyche.
An analytical system for predicting the state of cars (quality and technical), as well as an accurate calculation of passenger traffic allows Russian Railways to:
- Take into account the workload of trains.
- Fight free riders and employee abuse.
- Assess the efficiency of transportation.
- Reduce the cost of equipment operation and repair.
- Focus attention on targeted advertising, which allows you to reduce the costs.
- Establish dynamic ticket pricing.
- Improve the quality of service.
- Increase the level of competitiveness.
- Increase traffic volumes and profits.
Artificial intelligence (used in Russian Railways) is able to recognize objects, including people’s faces, keep white and black lists, track the movement of passenger traffic, classify it, and record the time spent in the surveillance area.
Requirements for video analytical equipment of Russian Railways
Due to the specifics of the field, the equipment for video recording and video analytics must meet the following requirements:
- High image quality, including good focus.
- Presence of an anti-vandal case and/or a high level of resistance to mechanical stress.
- Thermal endurance in the range from -50 to +60 degrees Celsius.
- Protection against vibration, dust, moisture, as well as indoor and outdoor use.
New legislative requirements
On October 10, 2020, according to TASS, a request was received from the Cabinet of Ministers of the Russian Federation to railway carriers: to provide all long-distance trains with video surveillance cameras. Mandatory surveillance areas should be: cars, vestibules and technical rooms.
The document was published on the official website.
The use of AI-based analytical video surveillance is recognized as an effective way to monitor compliance with production processes. Innovative video surveillance technologies at Russian Railways minimize the negative human factor, reduce the need for constant visual control, and increase the accuracy of the data obtained.