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Knowledge services

​​​​​​​​​Knowledge services support efficient and effective investment in research and development projects.

Knowledge & Technology Transfer service

Want to know if research has been done, or knowledge already exists? The Knowledge and Technology Transfer service provides answers to RSSB members. The service can:

  • Identify what is known on a given subject
  • Analyse applicability and opportunity for transfer of existing knowledge to GB rail
  • Actively monitor technological developments
  • Match knowledge with issues and opportunities identified by industry

The Knowledge and Technology Transfer service supports the R&D programme, carries out knowledge searches for RSSB members, and maintains a technology watch. The Knowledge and Technology Transfer service also facilitates SPARK External link​​, an online portal to enable rail industry professionals and other experts to work together, to share information and experience with the aim of reducing duplication, speeding up innovation, and maxim​ising value.​

Support for R&D

The Knowledge and Technology Transfer service supports the R&D programme by gathering information in order to find answers and solutions that already exist, avoid duplication, and focus the research efforts in the most promising areas. The service helps build research specifications and business cases, and identifies opportunities for co-operation where appropriate.

The team supports the research programme with its Knowledge and technology transfer services.

Knowledge searches

Knowledge searches can support RSSB members to develop research ideas, or confirm that knowledge already exists. Knowledge searches can uncover existing solutions, eliminating the need for research.

Find out how to request a knowledge search.

Technology watch

The on-going remit for technology watch is to keep an eye on technologies of potential interest to the industry. Technology watch includes a responsibility for horizon scanning. This identifies key technologies and likely changes, and develops key questions and hypotheses that may provide structure to the search and review processes.

The results of horizon scanning and other knowledge searches are available through links on the
GB cross-industry research and development
 ​External link page in SPARK, and almost all of them are available to registered SPARK ​Readers.


O​n the RSSB Knowledge services:

RSSB’s Knowledge Team have carried out and delivered several useful background analyses and reports for Adhesion Research Group recently on topics including, but not limited to low wheel/rail adhesion, speed measurement technologies, the biochemistry of leaves etc. These studies offer a rapid and efficient means of gaining a good, summary overview of research work that might have been carried out in the past, or be still on going here, abroad, within or external to rail on topics of interest to RSSB’s members or stakeholders…

Neil Ovenden – Chair, V/T Adhesion Research Group

On RSSB’s Horizon Scanning Portal (A new feature of RSSB’s knowledge services):

I have reviewed the portal and find the information very useful and the layout easy to navigate. It provides a platform for specialists like myself to get involved without being burdensome. I like it and applaud your work.

C. Chukwulozie, Network Rail

On Knowledge search: Air and health impacts of diesel emissions (S230):

I am impressed, it is a good piece of work which for the first time brings all of the various reports and studies that have produced over the last decade or so, together 'under one roof' so to speak. All thought it was an excellent paper, which will be extremely useful. It was felt that the paper is going to be in the public domain (and it is likely to be used by DfT to respond to public queries).

M. Parsons, Network Rail

Complements to you and your team in compiling the 'Air and health impacts of diesel emissions (S230)' report -this is a very comprehensive overview.

M. Smith, Network Rail


This knowledge search was later used by the Department for Transport and Network Rail to answer public enquiries.

This document is hosted on SPARK


You are now being redirected to SPARK, RSSB's knowledge sharing hub, to access the requested information.

Your RSSB user name and password can be used to access SPARK.