Insights into railML Wiki improvements

by Gulruh Farmonova ( (comments: 0)

The documentation of, a driving force in railway industry data exchange, is continually being improved through updates to its Wikis. They aim to simplify the implementation of railML standards, ensuring clear, accurate and efficient data exchange for its users. The article invites the community to explore these improvements, underlining railML's commitment to fostering interoperability and reliability in railway data exchange.

The development guides

Tailored for both railML2 and railML3, development guides offer clearer implementation guidance for developers, ensuring that every member of the railML community can contribute to and benefit from these standards. These guidelines have been recently created for railML3 on its Wiki, serving as new or complementary resources to the existing railML documentation. These specific guides cover a range of topics from semantic constraints to the intricacies of railway switches and crossings, making the use of railML standards less ambigious. Besides that, recent updates have streamlined railML2 categories, with specific categories being renamed to „Guidelines on how to develop railML schema“ to enhance clarity and accessibility. The aim is to provide a starightforward roadmap for developers so that every member of railML community can contribute to and benefit from this standard.

The railML codelists

The railML codelists are essential for users working with railML to provide a common set of codes (within railML2 and railML3), facilitating consistency across rail data exchanges. railML2 and railML3 share a unified codelist in a separate repository, with ongoing independent updates. The aim behind that is to ensure all users, regardless of the version they are working with, have access to a single set of codes. It also simplifies the process of updating and maintaining the codes, as changes are centrally managed and easily accessible. Additionally, the upcoming synchronization with RICS is expected to further improve data accuracy and exchange efficiency (with international standards) in the railway industry. For more information, check out the railML Wiki.

Visualizing railway infrastructure

The railML infrastructure visualisations introduces enhancements in the documentation of visual representation of railway infrastructure, making it easier to present complex layouts. The recent updates are related to best practices i.e examples for describing railway schematic track plans at a microscopic level. It explains using a simple example of a station with tracks, switches and a platform, emphasising the concept of „kinks“ to model distances between tracks. These kinks represent angles in the schematic plan, differing from real-world smooth curves.

The railML track connections

The latest documentation update introduces new source code examples for various track connections, including simple, single switch crossing and double switch crossing. This emphasizes the operational flexibility and complexity of railway crossings and enhance the precision of railway network modelling.

A detailed explanation on switch insertion illustrates how tracks connect through crossings, using identifiers for tracks (T1, T2), the switch (SW1) and connections (C1, C2) to demonstrate the process. This clarification helps in understanding the integration of switches into rail networks, a critical aspect of railway infrastructure.


Furthermore, the recent railML documentation update includes enhanced descriptions and examples for modelling rail infrastructure's physical aspects, alongside comprehensive information on integrating train detectors.

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