Telent turns Purple to improve UK railways

  • November 6, 2023
  • Steve Rogerson

British companies Telent and Purple Transform are using IoT technology to improve the safety and performance of UK railways.

Safety, security and operational performance of the railways should be improved thanks to a platform that uses analytics and machine learning to provide automated incident alerts and previously hidden data insights.

The integration of Telent’s Mica workforce automation platform and Purple Transform’s Siyte insights platform can send automated incident alerts in real time to station control rooms by using smart cameras and sensors to detect safety incidents automatically at the station and on the tracks.

It has been successfully installed at Dawlish and Dawlish Warren stations in Devon, where the railway runs alongside steep cliffs, putting trains and the track at risk of damage from rock fall.

IoT sensors fitted along the cliffs detect any rock fall and send an automated communications message for investigation; approaching trains can be notified of any potential danger. Smart cameras enhance safety at the station by identifying risks and unauthorised or trespassing personnel on the tracks and delivering real-time alerts to the control room.

“Organisations can be overwhelmed by data and extracting insights to inform operational and business decision-making has never been more complex,” said Kevin Bonanno, Telent’s director of rail. “Combining the Telent and Purple Transform platforms simplifies the collection, correlation and visualisation of data and puts insights in front of the right person at the right time.”

Telent’s Mica is used by the London Underground, Docklands Light Railway and Network Rail to manage over two billion passenger movements at 240 stations including London’s Oxford Circus, Waterloo and St Pancras International. It delivers real-time video surveillance (CCTV), public address, passenger help point, and fire and security alarms and alerts directly to control room operators via a single pane of glass.

The upgraded platform uses analytics, machine learning, IoT and data aggregation to give users access to previously hidden data insights to improve safety, security, operational performance and passenger experiences.

The combination can also transform legacy CCTV cameras into smart sensors capable of machine learning. It integrates wireless IoT sensors and ingests third-party data sets to solve problems through the ethical use of AI and data analytics.

It combines Telent’s experience in the design, build, support and management of the UK railway’s critical digital infrastructures with Purple Transform, which uses a combination of human intelligence and artificial intelligence to unlock the potential in an organisation’s data to improve safety, security, operational performance and passenger experiences.

“I’ve had the privilege of collaborating with Telent for several years, and I hold its wealth of technical experience and domain expertise in the highest regard,” said Greg Butler, CEO of Purple Transform ( “I am thrilled to be embarking on a new journey with Telent, shaping the future of information systems.”

Bonanno from Telent ( added: “Teaming up with Purple Transform, one of the UK’s most dynamic digital technology innovators, is truly exciting. Combining both organisations’ market leading and proven platforms enables Telent to provide infrastructure owners and operators with the next-generation data driven solutions to deliver transformative operational and business outcomes.”