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ASTRI Advancing Smart Railway Tech in Hong Kong

Image Credits: ASTRI, Press Release

The Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the MTR Corporation. The purpose of this MoU is to enhance their collaboration in utilising technology for smart railway operations management and intelligent maintenance. As part of the agreement, the MTR Corporation will allocate an extra HK$20 million to further strengthen the partnership between the two organisations.

The MoU signing ceremony took place in the presence of the Operations Director of the MTR Corporation and the Chief Executive Officer of ASTRI. Leading representatives from both organisations, including the Chief of Operations Engineering Service & Innovation of MTR Corporation and the Chief Operating Officer of ASTRI, signed the MoU. This agreement establishes a comprehensive framework for exploring innovative solutions and leveraging advanced technology.

ASTRI brings a wealth of expertise in research, development, and application of communication technology, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and data analytics. The collaboration between MTR Corporation and ASTRI aims to leverage these capabilities to further enhance the performance and efficiency of MTR’s railway operations and intelligent maintenance processes.

Since 2021, MTR Corporation has dedicated around HK$50 million to support collaborative initiatives with ASTRI. These projects encompass a range of contracts and endeavours aimed at leveraging advanced technology for various purposes. For instance, precise automatic optical inspection technology has been employed to enhance railway safety monitoring.

Additionally, joint research and development efforts have focused on creating a portable escalator gap clearance inspection tool. Furthermore, the application of digital twin technology has been explored to improve the operational efficiency of MTR’s maintenance centre.

Looking ahead, the two parties will continue their joint efforts to research, develop, and apply emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and data analysis. The overarching goal is to establish a smarter railway system that incorporates these innovative solutions. By collaborating closely, MTR and ASTRI aim to enhance the overall performance, efficiency, and safety of the railway network.

The Operations Director of the MTR Corporation expressed MTR’s unwavering commitment to leveraging technology to enhance operational and management performance, ensuring the provision of safe and dependable railway services to passengers.

Recognising the longstanding partnership with ASTRI, he acknowledged their valuable contribution in improving operational efficiency through innovative solutions. Collaboration with ASTRI’s experts is eagerly anticipated to further foster industry-academic-research collaboration and support the advancement of smart railways in Hong Kong.

The Chief Executive Officer of ASTRI expressed his enthusiasm for collaborating with MTR to drive the widespread adoption of intelligent railway technology. Recognising MTR’s profound impact on the daily lives of the public, ASTRI looks forward to establishing a close and cooperative relationship to develop an intelligent railway system. This endeavour will leverage various cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data, the Internet of Things, digital twins and optical inspections.

Intelligent railway services play a vital role in the development of an international smart city and it is believed that the collaboration between ASTRI and MTR will result in ground-breaking advancements in smart mobility technology in Hong Kong. The ultimate goal is to continuously enhance the travel experience and services for passengers while empowering smart living through the application of innovative technology.

MTR Corporation is actively engaging in collaborations with research institutions, universities, and start-ups. Their objective is to advance smart railway services and operations while simultaneously contributing to local scientific research, thereby keeping Hong Kong at the forefront of progress.

In their pursuit of making Hong Kong an international smart city, ASTRI plays an active role in enhancing the innovation and technology ecosystem. They actively promote cooperation among the government, industry, academia, and research sectors. ASTRI aims to translate advanced technology into practical applications, creating intelligent living and business environments that benefit the public. By fostering partnerships and driving innovation, ASTRI strives to deliver tangible advancements and a smarter future for Hong Kong.

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