Training Simulators | V&V | R & D | Studies and Developments

CITEF develops innovative services and products in the railway sector


CITEF has developed its own platforms to create simulation-based training systems that are specifically designed to operate all types of rail transport.

These systems reproduce the working conditions students will come across in both normal and degraded operating situations. Consequently, they help students develop the skills they need to perform their work, and improve operating safety and efficiency.


Driving simulators for initial training, consolidation of knowledge and or assessment of skills covering the entire rail spectrum: high-speed, freight, commuter rail, metro, light rail, tram, etc.

All the simulators developed can be highly tailored to each client’s requirements and specifics. This is true of both their software features (malfunctions and incidents included, student control reports, training planning, etc.) and their hardware design (use of actual cabs with moving platforms, reproductions of driving positions with actual controls and/or touchscreens, positions with virtual user interfaces, etc).

Traffic Control

These are training tools that accurately simulate the working environment of traffic control operators. They include the line being controlled, train traffic, signalling systems, interlockings, etc.

As our aim is to deliver the best results to our clients, we have also developed simulators that integrate driving and traffic control to create collaborative exercises that realistically simulate the operation of the entire system.

Operation and Maintenance

Training simulators for the operation of specific maintenance machinery, such as tamper machines. They simulate all the positions involved in maintenance activities to train work teams in their tasks.

CITEF has also worked for non-rail companies. A good example of this is the development of training simulators for operators of industrial facilities, whose operation and maintenance require special training as they involve possible risks for people or the facility itself, for example electric substations.


Verification and validation environments of rail systems, especially train control and protection systems, based on simulation technologies that make it possible to integrate actual hardware devices in the simulation (hardware-in-the-loop).

Consequently, the operation of the actual equipment is as installed in the proper system, since all the interfaces and their performance are simulated.

These systems allow for normal and degraded operation of the integrated equipment, which saves a great deal of time, man-hours and energy, and helps ensure the system is safer and more efficient when put into service.


Test systems for Operations Control Centres (OCCs) to connect the actual OCC to a simulation of the line, field elements, interlockings, traffic and the other integrated systems and to test normal and degraded operation of the system.

The versatility of the design ensures that once the OCC being analysed has been verified and accepted, the system can be reconverted into an operator-training environment of the OCC. It can also verify new functionalities and updates of the system’s software before it enters into operation (and, therefore, provide prior training in these systems).


Test bench for actual equipment in the most modern train control and protection systems. It integrates both on-board and line control equipment and tests either individual equipment or integrated system in a complete, dynamic simulation environment.

In addition to the equipment tests, the system also enables data and functionality tests of specific designs with actual operation data.


Verification and validation environments can automate tests so as to autonomously develop a pre-defined bank of scenarios and also to automatically generate a report with the results of each of the tests. This greatly facilitates the task of developing acceptance and non-regression tests, etc., and creates exhaustive documentation on the process, thus saving a great deal of time and man-hours.


Implementation of R&D activities in the rail system environment: track, rolling stock, signalling systems, power systems, communications, etc., and in rail and metro operation and maintenance areas.


Since CITEF was founded, it has participated in national and European requests for proposals for rail-related research projects. These include: 2TRAIN, INESS, SIMAFE, SMARTWAY, Light Rail Simulator, SELF, etc.


In addition, international patents have been developed of components for rail systems: rigid catenary, section breakers, escalators, simulation components, etc.


Whenever possible, we publish our research results in prestigious journals and at international conferences, such as Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems, Transport, Journal of Advanced Transportation, Vehicle System Dynamics, Simulation, Journal of Transport Engineering, COMPRAIL, etc.


As a result of the know-how created from various rail systems and components, CITEF conducts studies and generates specific developments in collaboration with clients.

Railway Dynamics

Based on multi-body models of the rolling stock under study, operating dynamics through simulation are analysed, paying special attention to the wheel-rail and pantograph-catenary interfaces.

Some examples are studies of the quality of the operation in accordance with safety and comfort standards, studies of the quality of current collection, etc.

Also hardware and software systems have been developed to record and process data to study the operating conditions of rolling stock.

Ventilation and Evacuation

Study of ventilation systems by simulating the dynamics of fire and smoke in underground stations and tunnels to check functionality and optimise the design of these systems.

Analysis through dynamic simulation of the evacuation of underground stations, tunnels and transport interchanges to verify compliance with standards, for example NFPA130, and to optimise design and escape routes.

We are especially proud of our joint simulation of the dynamics of fire and smoke and the evacuation of people, since it makes it possible to analyse the design in the event of an emergency in an environment that is far more realistic.


Studies of the operation of rail lines to understand all the operating variables and to improve their engineering and operation: travelling times, fleet, headway, consumption of the trains, off-line planning, etc.

We use our own simulation software for the studies. This software has been used in over 50 projects for all rail types: high-speed, freight, mining, commuter rail, metro, tram, etc., in over 15 countries.


Analysis of power dimensioning for rail lines to optimise it using both direct and alternating current, in 1x and 2x systems, including the study of nominal and degraded operating conditions: extreme voltages, maximum currents, capacities, rail-soil stresses, etc.

We use our own simulation software for the studies. This software has been used in over 50 projects for all rail types: high-speed, freight, mining, commuter rail, metro, tram, etc., in over 15 countries.

Operation and Maintenance Improvements

Our own specific developments for studying operating conditions of existing rail lines and improving their operation and maintenance. These developments include power efficiency systems for driving, systems for recording and analysing comfort and safety, and for identifying critical points on the track, computer vision train detection systems, etc.

Bespoke Developments

Bespoke software and hardware developments for our clients focused on improving the design, operation and maintenance of rail systems.

CITEF has also participated in projects to develop systems in the road transport and power sectors.