Modern vehicles have many functions directly controlled by computer systems such as the train drive and speed control, the control of doors, lighting or heating.
As environments are often harsh and narrow, computers in transportation applications must be robust and compact. They are typically networked by fieldbuses (CAN bus, MVB/WTB, ProfiNet), increasingly also by safe Ethernet variants. Compliance with at least parts of the EN 50155 is often mandatory.
In addition, many applications are safety-critical and demand safety levels from SIL 1 to SIL 3 or SIL 4, often resulting in redundant systems with defined error handling. These include train protection, the safe operation of signals and switches and other functions in wayside control and traffic management. MEN railway electronics are in accordance with all national train control systems like the European ERTMS/ETCS, the American PTC system, the Chinese CTCS or the Russian KLUB-U.
Computers for communication have mission-critical tasks when they transmit data and voice information between the train, the wayside equipment and control center. They are also used for passenger convenience (infotainment), with up-to-date information loaded to onboard servers and transferred to displays. And they support security (surveillance systems), recording camera data streams to video recorders and transmitting data to the control center. With in-vehicle communication mostly based on standard Ethernet, the outside is connected using different wireless standards (GSM-R/P, GPRS, Edge, UMTS, HDSPA, LTE, WLAN).
MEN is certified to IRIS (International Railway Industry Standard).