Gioconda – Desktop Signal Sighting and Driver Briefing

Gioconda are a world leader in the provision of 3-Dimensional (3D) models of the rail environment for activities including Signal Sighting, Asset Management, maintenance and Driver Training. Gioconda have supplied Desktop Signal Sighting and Driver Briefing Tools for the Railway Industry to Network Rail, UK and European based projects for over 10 years.

Rail Control Systems Australia (RCS Australia) have been working in collaboration with Gioconda over the past four years, developing Desktop Signal Sighting, Driver Briefing and Asset Logging tools for application on the Melbourne Metropolitan network and various other rail networks in Australia. This partnership provides the expertise in these fields combined with local knowledge to provide an expert service to local operators.

The Gioconda concept is:  We build – You operate. This basically means that our service is to capture and collate the data, build the models and integrate this information into the Gioconda software for you to use. RCS Australia can also provide our own trained personnel to guide and operate the Gioconda desktop sighting process for your signal sighting committees or provide training for your personnel to operate.

RCS Australia have completed delivery of several Driver Training Simulations: Burke Road Grade Separation and North, McKinnon and Centre Grade separations for the Melbourne metro rail network, Australia.

See the video below to further explain the Gioconda product offering.


Gioconda – What We Do


The Gioconda Visual Modelling Tools are based around the production of a model of the railway environment as seen from the cab. The Gioconda outputs can be developed in many ways, either by complete 3D Modelling or Overlays on captured video footage to suit the availability of input materials and project type.

Where a project requires the remodelling of the railway or the building of new railways, then a full 3D model of the proposed environment is able to be created for concept validation, sighting and can even be extended to include driver training inputs. These 3D models are able to be edited in real time; this therefore allows the ability to support client meetings or to make required changes in the presence of signal sighting committees.

Where the Gioconda output is created for existing lines, such as signal modifications, driver training and/or asset management, existing video footage may be utilised and virtual 3D signals overlaid onto this video footage.


Gioconda Visual for Driver Briefing or Signal Sighting
Gioconda Full 3DVR Visual output for Driver Briefing or Signal Sighting


When creating virtual reality models, the level of complexity of the model can also be selected to suit the intended purpose. These models are based off inputs such as video footage, CAD models (Signal, Track, Station, OHW) and inputs generated by civil and other designers, including satellite imagery etc. The complexity of the model can be increased as the project and requirements develop further. Typically, a low density render model is suitable for early stage signal sighting validation, with enhanced models then used for driver training and simulations.


Gioconda desktop signal sighting
The VR desktop signal sighting environment


The Gioconda Driver Briefing products have been extensively utilised in the UK (and Australia) to enable driver familiarisation in the desktop environment, prior to formally driving the route.

These models are built with all required detail for drivers to identify existing infrastructure and key reference points and become familiar with a new or amended scheme, even prior to construction, from design drawings supplied by the client.

An added benefit of this is the availability of the model being developed during the construction process allows for the early completion of the driver training materials and the timely distribution and training. It no longer becomes necessary to walk Driver Trainers through a busy construction site ready to pilot trains through the new line on return to service.

These driver training products allow driver training exercises to be undertaken when the operator desires, and the ability to distribute and duplicate materials for training allows for the scaling of training and effective driver route familiarisation of a large number of drivers, effectively, within a reduced timeframe.

Map Books of the new routes can also be created and supplied to drivers.

See the video below for more.


Gioconda – Driver Briefing Tools


The interactive Gioconda Desktop Signal Sighting alleviates demands on busy rail operators performing project works (grade separations, new lines, new roads and routes) by providing accurate, efficient analysis of Signal Sighting alongside automated outputs, allowing Signal Sighting committees to complete works in an accurate and timely fashion.

Traditional Signal Sighting assessments work off little more than civil engineering drawings of station buildings and track layouts and other plans which are often not integrated fully and presented in 2-Dimension form only.

The ability to model each proposed significant track remodel gives the operator the ability to view, analyse and modify in the office environment an integrated 3-D model of the railway. These models utilise millimeter accurate CAD plans developed by each of the relevant disciplines (Signalling, Civil, Stations, Overhead wiring).

Real time movement of structure, signal heights, chainages and offsets can be undertaken to analyse sighting scenarios, with individual driver positions able to be modeled to simulate alternate rollingstock.

Alongside the visual support and validation the Desktop Signal Sighting process offers, the supporting database also pre-populates a significant portion of the Signal Sighting Forms, effectively automating this process.

See more in the videos below:


Gioconda – Signal Sighting – The Way Ahead


Gioconda – Signal Sighting Tools


The supporting Gioconda Route Assessment and Sighting Tool (G-RAST) combines the HD video and 3D models to provide a visual representation of the proposed railway. It includes inbuilt processes and tools that provide the facilities required to position, sight, confirm and sign-off the signal or signage location.

The G-RAST process does not just consider signals and signs – many Gioconda projects are also to assess new OLE against existing signalling for sighting purposes.


Gioconda desktop signal sighting
Accurate measurements of existing and new lineside assets


The Gioconda software itself is not limited a number of client users. You may have many users overviewing and making use of the sighting and asset analysis tools, even across disciplines.

A further video of interest is below, explaining the Desktop Signal Sighting and Desktop Driver Briefing processes in further detail.


Gioconda – Seeing the light


The application of the Gioconda suite of tools are proven to lead to demonstrable cost, time and quality benefits for your project works.

Click here for more product information or to setup a local operator briefing

If you wish to overview some online resources further, we can recommend further PDFs & movies on the Gioconda UK website