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Autonomous Trains Technology Market - Snapshot

Autonomous trains have some degree of automation such as automatic train protection (ATP) and automatic train operation (ATO). Autonomous trains have different levels of automation. Basic level of train automation comprises ATP, ATO, and automatic train cruising and stopping. While the higher levels of train automation encompass driverless and unattended train operations. Fully autonomous trains are in the testing phase, similar to autonomous cars. However, there are a few trains that are completely autonomous and operational. Autonomous trains are proving to be an effective and economic mode of transport, as trains emit low pollutants, are capable of transporting heavy loads, and take less time to cover long distances.

autonomous trains technology market

Autonomous trains take considerably less time to cover long distances, as they contain train to train and train to server communication, which enables the trains to measure exact distance between the trains. Therefore, the safe distance between two trains running on the same track can be reduced effectively, which in turn shortens the travel time. This factor is primarily driving the Autonomous Trains Technology Market, coupled with enhanced passenger and train safety by eliminating the accident causing factors across the train track. In February 2018, at South Carolina, U.S., a passenger train crashed with a freight train, resulting in two fatalities and 116 serious injuries. According to specialists, the crash could have been avoided by the incorporation of automation technologies such as PTC (Positive Train Control). Several train accidents occur, annually, owing to the derailment of the train, which can be avoided by the implementation of autonomous technologies such as CBTC (Communication Based Train Control), ERTMS (European Railway Traffic Management System), ATC (Automatic Train Control), and PTC (Positive Train Control). These technologies have proven to be reliable and precise in order to avoid train accidents. Rising concerns about passenger safety is fueling the Autonomous Trains Technology Market. However, the significant cost required to build infrastructure and manufacture components is primarily restraining the Autonomous Trains Technology Market.

Development of advanced electronic components, continuous research and development in order to introduce advanced technologies, introduction of less costly and accurate LiDAR technologies and fusion sensors, and increased investment in the field of autonomous technologies are likely to offer lucrative opportunities for the Autonomous Trains Technology Market.

Grade of automation (GoA) level 1 and 2 have highest penetration amongst all the levels. Low cost required to upgrade trains up to this level of automation is driving the demand for GoA1 and GoA2 levels. Increased concern about passenger safety, enhanced government focus on secure and well-managed railway transport, and reduced time with automation are fueling the demand for GoA1 and GoA2 levels. Consequently, the segments are expected to hold a major share of the market during the forecast period. Metro trains are witnessing adoption of autonomous technology at a rapid pace. Metros are a highly rapid mode of transport with a significant application in urban passenger transportation. Considerable rise in urbanization, increase in number of passengers, and need of connectivity are fueling the demand for metros and other high speed trains such as bullet trains. Governing bodies are promoting the adoption of automation in metros and high speed trains for safe and accurate running of trains. Suburban trains are the most preferred mode of transport that connects urban areas with nearby rural and sub-urban areas. The number of passengers using suburban trains is increasing rapidly, which in turn is boosting the demand for automation through suburban trains.

A completely or partially autonomous train requires different components in order to perform its automated operations. Sensors are vital among those components that are needed to automate the train. In terms of revenue, LiDAR modules and optical sensors segments dominated the Autonomous Trains Technology Market, as the cost of LiDAR module is high and the number of optical and camera sensors required is high. However, the cost of LiDAR module is expected to drop significantly during the forecast period; however, its market size, in terms of revenue, is projected to expand at a CAGR of more than 5% during the forecast period.

A precise train traffic management system is necessary in order to manage smooth, accurate, and safe running of the autonomous trains as well as normal trains. Several railway traffic management systems have been developed; however, very few of them have proven to be highly effective. Adoption of these technologies varies according to the region. North America has adopted the Positive Train Control technology (PTC) as standard and is mandated to equip all train tracks across North America until December 31, 2018. The European Union has implemented the European Railway Traffic Management System (ERTMS) across Europe. ERTMS is witnessing demand outside Europe too. China and several countries in GCC and the Pacific have adopted ERTMS for their train tracks.

China and Japan are witnessing a considerable demand for train automation. Asia Pacific accounts for a prominent share of the global Autonomous Trains Technology Market, owing to large number of high speed and automated trains in China, Japan, and Pacific countries. The government of China is focusing on the development of new high speed train tracks and most of them are planned to be automated. India has started its first driverless train in its capital Delhi and is expected to demand for more number of autonomous trains. Consequently, Asia Pacific is expected to maintain its leading position in the global market during the forecast period.

Enhanced government support for train automation, increase in adoption of automation level, and development of advanced technologies offer several opportunities for companies operating in the Autonomous Trains Technology Market. Key players operating in the global Autonomous Trains Technology Market include Thales Group, Alstom S.A., Bombardier Transportation Hitachi Ltd., CRRC Corporation limited, Ansaldo STS, SIEMENS AG, and Mitsubishi Electric. France-based Alstom S.A. is developing an automated freight train in the Netherlands. The automated train is expected to be tested in the second quarter of 2018.

Rapid Rise in Smart Cities and Increased Spending on Transport Infrastructure by Many Countries will Boost the Growth Prospects of the Autonomous Trains Technology Market

The autonomous trains technology market expects to garner substantial growth on the back of the rising advancements in transportation technology around the world. The escalating urbanization levels and the emergence of smart cities in a large number of regions will prove fruitful for the growth of the autonomous trains technology market during the forecast period of 2017-2025.

  • Autonomous trains, also known as driverless trains function automatically without the need for human intervention. These trains are managed by a dedicated control station. The escalating need for strengthening transport mechanisms due to the booming population numbers across the globe will bring immense growth prospects for the autonomous trains technology market.
  • The benefits derived from autonomous train technologies as compared to traditional trains in terms of speed and functioning will serve as growth multipliers for the autonomous trains technology market. The growing number of accidents and mishaps due to human errors has increased extensively, which will serve as a demand-generating factor for the autonomous trains technology market.
  • The efforts of the government bodies of numerous countries to decrease reliance on fossil fuels will help in increasing the growth rate of the autonomous trains technology market. In addition, these trains have high safety standards as compared to traditional trains, which will add extra stars of growth to the autonomous trains technology market. Developed countries will contribute largely to the growth of the autonomous trains technology market due to their varied initiatives related to public transport and massive spending on transport infrastructure.
  • The COVID-19 outbreak has impacted the growth of the autonomous trains technology market to a certain extent. The lockdown restrictions imposed by many countries owing to rapid transmission rates affected the growth of the autonomous trains technology market to a considerable extent. However, the relaxations in the restrictions will serve as a relief for the players in the autonomous trains technology market.

Autonomous Trains Technology Market - Overview

This report analyzes and forecasts the market for autonomous trains at the global and regional level. The market has been forecasted based on figure (Km), revenue (US$ Mn) and volume (Units) for components, and number of autonomous trains (Unit) from 2017 to 2025. The study includes drivers and restraints of the global autonomous train’s components market. It also covers the impact of these drivers and restraints on demand for autonomous trains during the forecast period. The report also highlights opportunities in the Autonomous Trains Technology Market at the global and regional level.

The report comprises a detailed value chain analysis, which provides a comprehensive view of the global autonomous train’s components market. The study encompasses market attractiveness analysis, where in all market segments and types are benchmarked based on their market size, growth rate, and general attractiveness.

The study provides a decisive view of the global Autonomous Trains Technology Market by segmenting it in terms of grade, train type, components, technology, and region. These segments have been analyzed based on present and future trends. Regional segmentation includes the current and forecast demand for autonomous trains in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. The report also covers demand for individual segments across all major countries from these region.

The study includes profiles of major companies operating in the global autonomous train’s components market. Key players in the Autonomous Trains Technology Market include Thales Group, Alstom S.A., Hitachi Ltd., Bombardier Transportation, Ansaldo STS, Siemens AG, Mitsubishi Electric, CRRC Corporation limited Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd., General Electric, ABB, Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles, S.A., and CalAmp. Besides that, the report also includes regional key players in the Autonomous Trains Technology Market. Regional Players comprise of Beijing Traffic Control Technology Co., Ltd, Bharat Forge Limited, and Wabtec Corporation. Market players have been profiled in terms of attributes such as company overview, financial overview, business strategies, and recent developments. The market for autonomous train is primarily driven by rising demand for safety in trains. Industrialization has led to urbanization, which has resulted in migration to cities resulted in increased demand for automation in trains. Increased urbanization has boosted the demand for punctuality of trains which in turns surging the demand for higher level of train automation.

The report provides the estimated market size of autonomous trains for 2015 & 2016 and forecast for the next nine years. The global market size of autonomous trains has been provided in terms of kilometers of track and unit as well as in terms of revenue (US$) and volume (Units) for autonomous trains components. Market numbers have been estimated based on grade, train type, components, technology, and regional segments of Autonomous Trains Technology Market. Market size and forecast for each grade and train type have been provided in terms of global and regional/country markets.

In order to compile the research report, we conducted in-depth interviews and discussions with a number of key industry participants and opinion leaders. Primary research represents the bulk of research efforts, supplemented by extensive secondary research. We reviewed key players’ product literature, annual reports, press releases, and relevant documents for competitive analysis and market understanding. Secondary research also includes a search of recent trade, technical writing, internet sources, and statistical data from government websites, trade associations, and agencies. This has proven to be the most reliable, effective, and successful approach for obtaining precise market data, capturing industry participants’ insights, and recognizing business opportunities.

Secondary research sources that are typically referred to include, but are not limited to company websites, annual reports, financial reports, broker reports, investor presentations, and SEC filings, internal and external proprietary databases, and relevant patent and regulatory databases, national government documents, statistical databases, and market reports, news articles, press releases, and webcasts specific to companies operating in the market, National government documents, statistical databases, and market reports, Union Internationale des Transports Publics (UITP), International Railway Research Board (IRRB), International Union of Railways (UIC),Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA), Association of American Railroad, European Commission, etc.

Primary research involves e-mail interactions, telephonic interviews, linked-in interview, and face-to-face interviews for each market, category, segment, and sub-segment across geographies. We conduct primary interviews on an ongoing basis with industry participants and commentators in order to validate the data and analysis. Primary interviews provide firsthand information on market size, market trends, growth trends, competitive landscape, and outlook, etc. These help validate and strengthen secondary research findings. These also help develop the analysis team’s expertise and market understanding.

The Autonomous Trains Technology Market has been segmented as follows:


  • GoA1 + GoA2
  • GoA3
  • GoA4

Train Type

  • Long Distance Train
  • Suburban
  • Tram
  • Monorail
  • Subway/Metro


  • RADAR Module
  • Optical sensor & camera
  • Odometer
  • Antenna
  • LiDAR Module
  • Infrared camera
  • Others


  • CBTC
  • ATC
  • PTC

Region/ Sub-region/ Country


  • North America
    • U.S.
    • Canada
  • Europe
    • Germany
    • U.K.
    • France
    • Italy
    • Spain
    • Russia
    • Rest of Europe
  • Asia Pacific
    • China
    • India
    • Japan
    • ASEAN
    • Rest of Europe
  • Middle East & Africa
    • GCC
    • South Africa
    • Rest of Middle East & Africa
  • Latin America
    • Brazil
    • Mexico
    • Rest of Latin America

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Autonomous Trains Technology Market