The Digital Days were held in the new SisCampus building in Schattdorf, which houses the approximately 180 employees of Sisag AG and Remec AG.
Photo: D. Bumann


Digitalization for ropeways at Digital Days

Following the successful debut of Digital Days organized by Sisag AG and Remec AG last November, a second edition of the event was held at the SisCampus in Schattdorf (Switzerland) on June 8 and 9, 2022. The various speakers from the two companies showed the approximately 40 attendees how the latest digital tools can be employed to operate ropeways with increasing efficiency.

Created by Damian Bumann

Following words of welcome by Marco Zgraggen, Managing Director of Sisag AG, Michael Arnold provided attendees with information on SisControl Cockpit. This tool provides operators with a reliable overview of the operating processes. On a web-based application in the cloud, the operation of complex systems is centralized in a kind of cockpit and the processes automated. Information can be automatically exchanged, stored and visualized between users and systems. In addition, SisControl Cockpit supports extensive maintenance planning. With SisControl Cockpit, ropeway installations can be monitored and operated remotely, from a single control point, without the need for operating personnel. This is achieved through the digitalization and centralization of the various monitoring data inputs (such as person recognition, people counts, temperature measurement, fire detection, and automation of the timetable). Mit SisMedia the operator in the control center can communicate with visitors via audio and video monitoring. The first project involving a gondola lift (passenger operation without operating personnel) was implemented two years ago on the new Tuftern - Kumme - Unterrothorn gondola lift above Zermatt. Currently, Sisag AG is involved in another project, namely the future aerial tramway from Zermatt to Furi, which will also operate without any attendants in the stations. It will be the first aerial tramway of its kind to be operated via a control center. The company’s latest product is the SisTIQ digital ticket. Visitors can use their cell phones to simply scan a QR code at the stations and then trigger a ride command. Payment is made by invoice, TWINT or webshop. No additional on-site hardware is required, just a QR code to scan.

Peter Bucher explained the challenges of 3D sensor technology. It can be used for room surveillance and also to check whether there is anyone in a gondola or in the loading/unloading areas. This technology can also detect objects up to 100 m away using LiDAR (light detection and ranging). This new system will be a feature of the Bartholet Ropetaxi gondola lifts now being built in the Swiss resort of Flims.

SisCom and SisIT services

Ramon Russi made a presentation of SisCom. SisCom is a component of the control system that enables secure line and communication monitoring between stations and carriers. It is a product of proven technology with a compact design and IP telephony integration for optimal voice quality. In addition, the system offers direct monitoring of actual values, warnings and alarms. The status of the individual components is perfectly integrated into the visualization function of the control system, which is a great advantage for the operator. This modern technology is easily installed in the gondolas and consumes little energy. At the same time, secure remote access is always available via the visualization function of the control system.

Simon Jauch, head of SisIT Services at Sisag AG, provided the meeting with information about the new department. He explained that Sisag offers its know-how in the field of risk analysis for IT systems with a focus on availability, security, consulting, installation and support and performs assessments of the organizational structure of companies’ IT operations. Sisag also checks the availability of a reliable, fully functional ICT network on the mountain, which constitutes a lifeline for ropeway operators, as well as correct data management.

Maintenance as a core competence

The second day was devoted to the products of Remec AG. Markus Burch provided detailed information on the subject of maintenance, which includes servicing, inspection, repair and improvement. Maintenance, he said, is often regarded as a matter of running through checklists and fixing faults as quickly as possible, or as a cost driver and as something you don’t know exactly what it is all about. In fact, however, maintenance today has a very important function. For this function to be performed consistently, it is necessary to combine the relevant data, promote the creation of knowledge databases, and link analog and digital information. The Sambesi maintenance software offers transparent presentation of all maintenance work performed. This is important as everything must be documented today, including preventive measures, incidents and the resulting repairs, the use of spare parts and the man-hours involved. With expertise, trust and the availability of key data, maintenance becomes a core competence of every company, said Markus Burch. Patrick Tresch added that the Sambesi maintenance software also simplifies handling of the all the GIS data generated today, which makes it ideal for maintenance management for buildings, playgrounds and snowmaking installations.

The next generation SambesiX maintenance software

Rolf Bissig and Daniel Studer presented SambesiX, the next generation of Remec’s maintenance software. The idea behind the update is to make the technology still more attractive to existing users and new customers, which can also open the door to other industries. SambesiX will come with a new design, improved usability and also enhanced security. Bissig and Studer concluded by saying that the first pilot customers will be able to benefit from the new software in about a year.

A well known service available from Remec AG is Technical Management of Ropeways, as explained by Edgar Welti. In addition to technical management proper, this involves such activities as implementation of the Disability Act, visual rope inspections using Winspect, overseeing ropeway carrier evacuation, providing training with the Sambesi maintenance software, etc. an. Today, Remec AG provides this service to a total of 18 companies in Switzerland and Austria.

(Kopie 6)

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