The first UIC TrainRail Hackathon has been celebrated in the University of Zilina in collaboration with ASTONRail Eramus+ Project 

Under the topic ‘How can rail be resilient in the face of pandemics?’ five groups leading by the University of Málaga (Spain) presented their projects to reinforce the railway sector last week 

 In the context of the working meeting of the Erasmus+ ASTONRail project at the University of Zilina, the competition has allowed participants from Portugal, Poland, Switzerland, Spain, UK and Italy to present the results of the work they have carried out in recent weeks. The proposals showcase novel ideas that aim to help the railway sector meet the challenges that have emerged in the context of the Covid19 pandemic. The winners will represent the European bid in the global competition to be held in Moscow in 2022. 

In this edition, all teams have shown a high level, both in the quality of the proposals and in the commitment to offer truly resilient solutions. The winning team is composed by Cristiano Majorca, Rúben Camilo, Tiago Pinto, Phil Mortimer, Fabiano Fumagalli (from Portugal, UK and Italy) with a proposal focused on ‘Train, Stations and Infrastructure: Automatic Safety & Cleaning System’. The jury was composed of five professionals and academics from the railway sector who are also members of the ASTONRail project. This international event is organised by the UIC and ASTONRail, is sponsored by the School of Industrial Engineering of the University of Malaga (UMA) and has been led by a group of four researchers from UMA. 

This novel format called ‘hackathon’ involves teams of professionals and students working for a limited time to offer a novel solution to a question or problem, hence the origin of its name: ‘hack’ (creative solution to a problem) and ‘marathon’ (the length of time teams have to present their proposal). On this occasion, the competition was held in a virtual format due to the current pandemic situation. 

About organizers 

ASTONRail is a project co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union and it is leading by Aston University (UK). The main objective of the ASTONRail is to develop a portfolio 

(toolkit) of innovative methods, approaches, and professional practices for railway skills development and, as a result, improve and modernize the current railway higher education offer in Europe. 

UIC is the International Union of Railways (also known as, Union Internationale des Chemins de fer), representing the railway sector and promoting rail transport. UIC leads an innovative and dynamic sector, helping members find continuing success and opportunities. 

Hackathon organizers from University of Málaga 

Dr. Sergio Postigo and Dr. Juan J. Castillo are associated professors at the School of Industrial Engineer (UMA); Dr. Isabel Ruiz-Mora is associated professor at the Faculty of Communication (UMA) and Pablo J. Salas is project intern and PhD Student in Communication (UMA). 


Hackathon Organizers: