Rail transportation sciences


Chair Launched 

january 2013 for 5 years


Gilles Foret


The objective of the Chair is to develop educational and research programs on themes linked with rail activity as a whole. It will therefore deal with rail operation, flow management, safety, the lifespan of facilities and technologies, reducing the environmental impact of rail activity, the global economics of rail transportation services, the impact on local and national public policies, etc., with an emphasis on the particular challenges of new technologies and organizational changes in rail markets.


Research activity will draw on doctoral theses, postdoctoral research, or research Masters programs.

Two thesis subjects have already been decided. The first topic focuses on the mechanical field “Mechanical behavior and deterioration of a rail track in a tunnel”, and the second on optimization “Sequencing of trains in tunnels”.

The list of other topics also includes Mechanics (rail-wheel wear) and Optimization (shunting operations, economic modeling,…), Materials (Thermal behavior of tunnels, Ageing of materials,…), ICT Use and Security (learning methods for surveillance, recognizing abnormal patterns,…).

The aim of the educational component will be to increase the visibility of associated problems in existing teaching programs, or to establish new teaching programs. It will entail a variety of methods: 

  • Company internships, group or individual projects
  • “Big” group projects on a practical problem involving research laboratories
  • Projects by students from the engineering program 
  • Technical visits and study trips
  • Chair anniversary days to celebrate the results obtained on the “research” side