Wabtec, Fret SNCF and RDT13 to expand freight rail in Europe through the MONITOR Project

Wabtec, Fret SNCF and RDT13 to expand freight rail in Europe through the MONITOR Project

ARLES, France, Feb. 17, 2023 -- Wabtec Corporation (NYSE: WAB), French national operator Fret SNCF and regional operator RDT13 (Régie des Transports des Bouches du Rhône) launched today the MONITOR Project, the first innovation project of the French Rail Freight of the Future (4F) coalition to accelerate the development of the rail freight industry in Europe.

The MONITOR Project consists of equipping railcars with sensors to monitor and prevent the risks of derailment, untimely brake applications and to reduce train preparation time. Ultimately, it could help reduce maintenance costs and contribute to the European Union's goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

The MONITOR Project focuses on four key technologies, brought together for the first time: radio communication between cars along the train; brake monitoring; bogie monitoring; and automated brake testing.

This project was funded by the French State as part of France 2030 operated by ADEME, the French agency for ecological transition. It will last three and a half years. The solutions will be developed by Wabtec based on needs established by the Consortium, before being tested in real conditions on the rolling stock of the SNCF and RDT 13. For Wabtec, this project will generate new jobs in France with high added value.

"The MONITOR Project has the potential to transform the development of freight rail in Europe,” said Lilian Leroux, President of Wabtec Global Transit and Freight Europe. “We are delighted to bring our experience of innovative railway technologies to develop fully digitalized freight train operations. By developing the attractiveness of rail in Europe, we will contribute to the European Union's goals of doubling the modal share of rail to 30% by 2030, helping to reduce CO2 emissions."

"The digitalization of freight represents a major opportunity for rail operators in terms of operating safety, productivity, attractiveness of our professions and improvement of working conditions, said Frédéric Delorme, president of Rail Logistics Europe at SNCF. “Fret SNCF is playing a major role in the MONITOR Project, an essential brick in preparing the autonomous freight train of tomorrow, by sharing its expertise and feedback on freight train operations, and by testing new solutions in real conditions on board its locomotives and the wagons it operates."

"Rail freight uses six times less energy, emits eight times less pollution and nine times less carbon than a comparable journey by road, said Paul Sillou, CEO of RTD 13.” We are proud to contribute to this innovative project that will bring major benefits to French and European rail."

MONITOR is the latest in a series of freight innovation projects involving Wabtec in Europe. The company is also a founding member of Europe's Rail Joint Undertaking (ERJU), a major project aimed at developing fully digitalized, interoperable, high-capacity, sustainable rail freight operations. 

About Wabtec  
Wabtec Corporation (NYSE: WAB) is focused on creating transportation solutions that move and improve the world. The company is a leading global provider of equipment, systems, digital solutions and value-added services for the freight and transit rail industries, as well as the mining, marine and industrial markets. Wabtec has been a leader in the rail industry for over 150 years and has a vision to achieve a zero-emission rail system in the U.S. and worldwide. Visit Wabtec’s website at www.wabteccorp.com. 

About Fret SNCF

As part of Rail Logistics Europe, the SNCF group activity that brings together the rail freight and logistics companies, Fret SNCF offers freight transport solutions in France and Europe, whatever the sector of activity of its customers. Fret SNCF serves more than 600 sites in France and provides regular, high-capacity connections on the main economic corridors. With its services for the automotive, chemical and petrochemical, metallurgy, construction and public works, minerals, agricultural and consumer goods industries, the company meets local, national and international transport needs.

Thanks to its 4,800 employees, Fret SNCF is the leading rail freight operator in France, transporting 17 billion ton-km each year and achieving a turnover of €735 million in 2021. By offering innovative and competitive services, Fret SNCF is committed to increasing the share of rail in European freight transport in order to fight global warming.

* Fret SNCF is part of Xrail, an alliance of seven European railway companies working on a new production and supervision method for single wagonloads based on a standard. XRail is a platform for technical and innovative cooperation that meets customers' requirements for reliability and integrated information. By 2021, the alliance aims to make the European single wagonload service a sustainable and competitive alternative to road transport. 

About RDT 13

Created in 1913 by the Bouches-du-Rhône Council to manage the local railroads in the French department, the RDT13's activity is now mainly devoted to passenger transport, in particular the operation of the coach network and various school transport lines. The Bouches-du-Rhône Departmental Transport Authority (RDT13) is currently the only metropolitan transport authority in France to maintain a railway activity and also has railway traction, infrastructure maintenance and rolling stock maintenance activities. Its historical and recognized know-how in the world of rail transport makes RDT13 an innovative player in the world of rail freight and already involved in the sustainable mobility of tomorrow.

Media Contacts


Raphael Hinninger
Raphael [dot] hinninger [at] wabtec [dot] com
+33 (0)6 71 83 60 36

Antoine Rothey
Antoine [dot] rothey [at] sncf [dot] com

Jack Nycollin
j [dot] nycollin [at] rdt13 [dot] fr
+33 (0)6 76 78 64 89