Autonomous Coupling System for Goods Rail Traffic a robotic solution for marshalling yards handling hook-and-chain couplings

Research output: Contribution to book/conference proceedings/anthology/reportConference contributionContributedpeer-review


  • Philipp Salger - , Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Author)
  • Franz Jost - , Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Author)
  • Peter Gratzfeld - , Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Author)


As globalization demands more and more flexible cargo logistics, freight trains play a big role in moving goods between production sites. Estimations show that goods rail traffic will increase and new solutions to handle wagons will be needed. Today cargo freight trains in Europe are still manually coupled via the hook-and-chain-coupling, a technology older than 100 years. A solution to allow a faster, safer and automated way is a coupling robot installed below the cargo trains at marshalling yards. This solution can be implemented gradually and with no change on rolling stock giving time to implement the long-term solution of an automatic coupling allowing ETCS Level 3 in the future.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2018 International Symposium on Power Electronics, Electrical Drives, Automation and Motion (SPEEDAM)
ISBN (electronic)978-1-5386-4941-1
ISBN (print)978-1-5386-4942-8
Publication statusPublished - 26 Aug 2019
Externally publishedYes

External IDs

Scopus 85053844677



  • Couplings, Rails, Robots, Rail transportation, Europe, Personnel, Manuals, hook-and-chain-coupling, automatic coupling, wagons handling