Communication Technology for rail vehicles

Invisible to the eye from the outside, train bus couplers, switches and converters perform indispensable functions in the safe operation of modern rail vehicles. The industry is currently in the midst of the transformation to Ethernet-based communication - with major challenges for train manufacturers and rail operators.

Communication is what counts

Just a few years ago, Ethernet technology was used in rail vehicles almost exclusively for passenger comfort functions, such as multimedia application. In modern vehicles, the technology has now also become standard in the part relevant to train control - the Train Control & Management System (TCMS). Against this background, train bus couplers, switches and converters play indispensable roles, because communication is what counts.

Train Bus Couplers, Gateways, Switches, Ethernet Repeater and Converters

Selectron offers two product groups from the train bus coupler product family (Train Backbone Nodes): The Train Backbone Switch acts as a connection to the Ethernet Train Backbone as a train-wide interface. With a switch and router in one device, it establishes the connection to the train set (Consist) bus. In doing so, it creates the prerequisite for dynamic train inauguration and the transparent connection of other vehicle segments. Protocol-specific gateways handle the connection to the wire train bus as the train-wide interface.

Switches, such as the Ethernet Consist Switch, can be used within all components in the train set and integrate cybersecurity and managed switch functionalities. Communication converters cover all communication interfaces in the train set; for example, from the old RS-485 interface to CAN or Ethernet.


  • Selectron converters ensure the compatibility between bus systems and communication protocols at all times – and with considerably protocol configuration flexibility.
  • Various bus protocols such as CAN, MVB, 422/485, 232, HDLC, and Ethernet are available.
  • Compact mechanical format: Several peripherals come in space-saving designs.


White Paper Network Technology
[PDF, 2.7 MB]

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Train Backbone Nodes and Gateways

Train backbone nodes facilitate the dynamic train inauguration. The systems enable trains to be easily configured - and they perform important monitoring functions en route.

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Switches and Repeater

Switches can be deployed within all components in the train set. They integrate cybersecurity and managed switch functionalities into complex vehicle architectures.

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Easily, life cycles of rail vehicles extend over decades. When different bus systems and communication protocols interact, converters establish compatibility.

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Training & Consulting Services

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