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Virtual signal sighting at Kings Cross

SPi’s signal sighting VR model for Kings Cross allowed safety critical decision-making to made and tested virtually, ahead of construction


The challenge Network Rail presented to SPi was to determine the optimal position for the installation of new signals, such that the line of sight to each signal was not impeded by other rail infrastructure. Given the need to minimise service interruptions, doing this on-site in the real world would have been an extremely time consuming, costly and potentially dangerous exercise.


SPi created a VR model that had been derived from project design data - this VR model was also later to be used with great success for Driver Route Learning and Stakeholder Engagement purposes. This provided a high level of accuracy, while also providing realism that enabled Signal Sighting committee members to quickly recognise the location of each item to be sighted. Making safety critical decisions in the virtual environment ahead of construction allowed options to be developed and tested with confidence.

In addition to creating the model, SPi provided experts to operate the modelling software during Committee meetings, with the results displayed instantly on a large screen. Changes to signal positions were made in real-time within the model, and doublechecked by simulating the driver eye position and ‘driving’ a virtual train along the tracks.



Compared to manual sighting, SPi’s VR modelling resulted in a significant saving in time and budget plus the project identified additional safety improvements.

The solutions and support provided by SPi was considered essential to the project delivery from a signal sighting perspective. Kings Cross was very restricted in terms of signal positioning and ensuring the accuracy of the signal sighting model was key. Our solutions enables the team to understand problematic areas and help engineer solutions in good time.

Virtual signal sighting at Kings Cross
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  • SPi delivered high quality service, keeping in communication with our requirements throughout, and going beyond the call of duty when needed
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