‘First of a kind’ funding win for rail tech pioneer, Incremental

'First of a kind' funding win for rail tech pioneer, Incremental

Established supplier of data-driven solutions to the rail industry, Incremental, is once again celebrating success this week as a winner in the government-backed funding competition ‘First of a Kind’.

TRACO new first of a kind app from Incremental

As one of the successful applicants, Incremental will now see its ground-breaking freight train location tracking solution, ‘TRACO’ (TRAnsition COnnectivity for trains and trucks), brought to fruition to facilitate the UK’s commitment to providing a more reliable, efficient and greener railway.

The ‘First of a Kind’ competition was launched in 2018 and is delivered by the ‘Small Business Research Initiative’, a collaboration between the Department for Transport and Innovate UK. The partnership runs several competitions each year and is committed to providing tremendous financial support for innovative and ambitious projects it believes will modernise and transform the rail industry.

With 160 competitive applications for the funding, Incremental has once again demonstrated its trusted capability to deliver data-driven solutions to the rail industry, as one of only 30 winners across the UK and European Economic Area.

This is the third time York-based Incremental has been recognised by the partnership and awarded funding support to help accelerate the delivery of its cutting-edge solutions. ‘TRACO’ will follow in the footsteps of previous competition winning solutions, ‘OLErt’ and ‘RAPPORT’. Both of these systems provide essential real-time monitoring and instant location information and are now deployed across the UK rail network.

Designed to meet common challenges faced by UK rail freight operators, Incremental’s ‘TRACO’ will use its sophisticated GPS system to provide intermodal tracking of freight across rail, road and at ports to provide the most accurate location information and intermodal freight tracking capabilities of its kind.

Due to the practice of freight trains spending idle time in depots and sidings, they are often situated in ‘blind spots’ on the network. This solution will be the first of its kind within the rail freight industry to track the unit anywhere, in real-time. This enables everyone in the logistical supply chain to be aware of its progress, respond to any delays or disruption and predict the train’s arrival at its end destination. Additionally by further tracking freight across onward modal transitions such as road haulage, end-to-end freight journeys can be tracked and efficiencies optimised.

‘TRACO’ will provide real-time location monitoring of intermodal freight pathways down to a container-level. This will give all parties involved reliable arrival prediction tools in order to facilitate optimised intermodal connectivity between road, rail and port. ‘TRACO’ will provide the integration of previously disparate data sets, through accurate location information and real-time delay prediction algorithms, which will reduce transition times and create efficiencies and benefits for all.

Daniel Lee-Bursnall, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Incremental, says:

“Our fantastic team has made us proud once again. Becoming one of the winners of this competition, is further testament that we’re a company that conceives, designs and delivers innovative solutions that benefit the rail industry and the wider UK economy. At Incremental, we focus our efforts on creating products that make the railway better for everyone and help solve the challenges the industry faces. We’re thrilled that the SBRI has acknowledged this once again.

“The modal shift of transporting freight from road to rail is an effort we are proud to support in the UK Government’s effort towards a more sustainable future. ‘TRACO’ will give all parties in the supply chain access to essential and credible location data at any given time. This will reduce paper-based systems and provide the tools to better plan, monitor and deliver goods to customers around the UK and we can’t wait to get started.”

Incremental will now, upon achieving success in the competition, receive the funding it needs to bring ‘TRACO’ to market to better our essential rail freight industry, which is set to grow substantially over the coming years. The further development process of ‘TRACO’ will begin on 1 July 2021 and be complete by March 2022.