- Knorr-Bremse today acquired a 21.3% share in the Israeli start-up RailVision
- Strategic investment of $10 million in obstacle detection technology for rail vehicles based on video and infrared
- Knorr-Bremse takes a further step on its way to support systems for automated driving in the railway sector
Knorr-Bremse, the global market leader for braking systems and a leading supplier of other rail and commercial vehicle subsystems, today signed an agreement to invest $10 million in RailVision, Ra’anana, Israel, in consideration of a 21.3% share of RailVision. RailVision provides obstacle detection technology for rail vehicles based on infrared and video which is a crucial technology for realizing automated driving functions. With this transaction, Knorr-Bremse pursues its objective of offering highly integrated support systems in the field of automated driving to its railway customers.
“Rail Vision owns a dynamic and professional team with a strong competence in artificial intelligence and deep learning. RailVision’s obstacle detection applications by cameras will position us as a relevant player in this market and will allow us take a further step on our way to offer support systems for automated driving,” explains Dr. Jürgen Wilder, Member of the Executive Board of Knorr-Bremse AG and responsible for the Rail Vehicle Systems division. He adds: “A relevant application will be, for example, the path finder for the Knorr-Bremse Collision Avoidance System for LRVs. Apart from obstacle detection this technology will also be capable of predicting service needs along the tracks and infrastructure. Needed maintenance work can be focused and become more cost effective.“
RailVision is a leading provider of cutting-edge cognitive vision sensor technology and safety systems for the railway industry. RailVision’s solutions offer detection and classification of objects or obstacles (e.g. humans, vehicles, signals), rail path recognition (i.e. switch state detection), distance measurement and opportunity infrastructure condition monitoring, required for ATO. Recently, RailVision has completed a successful long-term pilot of its unique vision-based system with a leading European railway company. The pilot was conducted under harsh weather and light conditions over a three-month period and demonstrated the system’s real-time capabilities to detect and classify obstacles at distances of several hundred meters, which is suitable for cargo operators in shunting yards. In addition, RailVision had made substantial technological progress over the last year developing its mainline solution which will enable detections and classifications up to 2,000 meters and also presented its add-on big data module concept that enables customized real-time and offline analysis of rail infrastructure and the surrounding ecosystems.
Elen Katz, CEO and founder of RailVision, welcomes the new partner: “We are excited about this strategic investment from Knorr-Bremse as a shareholder. As a leading supplier of rail subsystems, Knorr-Bremse’s investment further strengthens our unique technology and the growing demand for efficient solutions for the rail industry,” said Elen Katz, CEO and founder of RailVision. “We believe that this partnership will support us in commercializing our technology and help raise our credibility in the market. In addition, we are confident that securing the financing will strengthen our performance and economic outlook.”
Founded in 2014, RailVision in Ra’anana, situated in the north of Tel Aviv, is a privately held Israeli start-up with military technology roots looking for a corporate partner which is well established in the railway industry. Around 50 employees are working for best in class obstacle detection technology and software applications (e.g. passenger alert system for platforms). Basis of the company is a highly capable R&D team with long experience in optical sensors and deep learning with patent application to protect their IP.
Published by Knorr-Bremse – on March 14, 2019