The ON-TIME project will develop new methods and processes to help maximise the available capacity on the European railway network and to decrease overall delays in order to both increase customer satisfaction and ensure that the railway network can continue to provide a dependable, resilient and green alternative to other modes of transport. In the project, specific emphasis will be placed on approaches for alleviating congestion at bottlenecks. Case studies to be considered will include passenger and freight services along European corridors and on long distance main-line networks and urban commuter railways. The ON-TIME project envisages 4 levels of work:

Considerable previous research has been undertaken in the area of timetable planning and real-time traffic management for railways, however, to date this work has mainly been undertaken in the academic arena with little or no industrial involvement or practical application. In the early stages of the project, the ON-TIME team will use real-world case studies to review and benchmark previously unexploited academic research in order to identify candidate approaches for further development and demonstration. Furthermore, current best practice will be identified and developed by examining national projects previously carried out by railway undertakings. Best practice will be disseminated widely through associations and organisations such as Rail Net Europe, UIC and UNIFE, as well as through the development of candidate standards.