OPEUS project

Modelling and strategies for the assessment and OPtimisation of Energy USage aspects of rail innovation


The aim of OPEUS is to develop a simulation methodology and accompanying modelling tool to evaluate, improve and optimise the energy consumption of rail systems with a particular focus on in-vehicle innovation.

The OPEUS concept is based on the need to understand and measure the energy being used by each of the relevant components of the rail system and in particular the vehicle. This includes the energy losses in the traction chain, the use of technologies to reduce these and to optimise energy consumption (e.g. ESSs).

Specifically, the OPEUS approach has three components at its core:

  1. the energy simulation model
  2. the energy use requirements (e.g. duty cycles) and
  3. the energy usage outlook and optimisation strategies recommendation.

The concept builds on an extensive range of knowledge and outcomes generated by a number of key collaborative projects (e.g. CleanER-D, MERLIN, OSIRIS, RailEnergy, ROLL2RAIL) underpinning the research proposed, ALL of which have been led by OPEUS consortium members.

Particularly the tool developed for the CleanER-D project will be used as starting point. Significant complementary work from the academic community will also be used to enhance the activities of the project.

OPEUS concept

Specifically, these previous projects input will be used to:

  • Expand and develop the simulation tool (CleanER-D, MERLIN);
  • Complete the operational requirements by enhancing the urban duty cycles (OSiRIS);
  • Provide a global vision of energy consumption in railways (CleanER-D, OSIRIS, RailEnergy)

OPEUS’ ambition is to firmly contribute to the following key areas:

  • Understand energy consumption of urban railways;
  • Develop a tool to objectively compare technologies and strategies aimed at optimising the energy usage of railway systems;
  • Unlock the potential contribution that novel technologies and associated strategies can make to optimising rail energy consumption;
  • Share a global vision for how energy is used in railways.

News & Events

Shift2Rail projects FINE 1 & OPEUS Final Conference


FINE 1 & OPEUS Final Conference to be held at UIC in Paris on 17 October 2019 This joint final event will be the opportunity to present the results achieved in the projects and to discuss how these results may improve the energy consumption of rail systems in the future and advance the state-of-the-art in noise modelling. The FINE 1 project aims to reduce operational costs of railways by a reduction of energy use and noise related to rail traffic. The project results will enhance (...)

Read more Published on 25 June 2019

Shift2Rail JU funded projects OPEUS and FINE1 met in Munich on 15-16 March 2018

Representatives from OPEUS and FINE1 met on March 15-16 in Munich to discuss their upcoming collaboration and exchange on the two Shift2Rail projects.
As the eighteen month marker approaches for OPEUS, Munich provided an opportunity for our partners to present some preliminary results from the project’s findings. The University of Rostock’s Lukas Pröhl, who works on OPEUS, led the presentation of the early results. This featured particular focus upon a universal tool for the estimation of energy consumption that will now be rolled out during simulation testing. The intention is to make the tool public for all organisations and (...)

Read more Published on 27 March 2018


To realise the objectives of OPEUS a series of activities divided into the following nine work packages (WPs) will be implemented:

  • WP01: Urban rail systems energy requirements
  • WP02: Simulation model and tool development
  • WP03: Reference scenarios simulation
  • WP04: DAS study
  • WP05: In-vehicle energy losses study
  • WP06: Advanced ESSs study
  • WP07: Global vision of energy in railways
  • WP08: Dissemination, exploitation and engagement
  • WP09: Management


The OPEUS consortium is formed of six partners from five different European countries representing an extremely well balanced mix of skills, expertise and stakeholders. Specifically, the consortium is made up of two leading academic partners (Newcastle University and Rostock University), one rail vehicle manufacturer (Stadler Rail Valencia), one leading energy storage systems supplier (SAFT Technologies) and two associations (UITP and UIC) representing a mix of railway undertakings, infrastructure managers, local authorities and public transport operators. This solid mix of universities, leading industrial partners and associations allows the consortium to respond to the challenges posed in the project and to realise the key project results.

The partners have previously worked together in international research initiatives, which will support an efficient project execution. Crucially, the partners have all been key participants in previous projects that are essential to meet the challenges and deliver the impact expected on this topic.

These include:

  • CleanER-D’s hybridisation tool developed by Rostock University in collaboration with Stadler Rail Valencia, SAFT, UIC and Newcastle University;
  • OSIRIS urban duty cycle set up, energy requirements and evaluation methodology led by Newcastle University together with UITP and SAFT;
  • MERLIN’s optimisation algorithm for decision support on energy usage developed by Newcastle University and the collaboration of UIC;




OPEUS & FINE 1 Final Conference Programme
Joint High Level session
Energy Session OPEUS & FINE1: Cluster 1 - Case studies
Energy Session OPEUS & FINE1: Cluster 2 - Key results and recommendations
Energy Session OPEUS & FINE1 Cluster 3: What is Next
Joint high-level session