• This technological development transforms the future of sectors where safety is crucial, such as the automotive, railway, medical, advanced manufacturing with collaborative robots or the aeronautical sector.
  • The UP2DATE project confirms the results of its research through practical demonstrators in the automotive and railway sectors.

Executing a single command in a device and updating critical systems for the safety of people in an entire fleet of trains, lifts or vehicles is now possible. IKERLAN, within the framework of the European UP2DATE project, has developed a disruptive technology that has come to revolutionise maintenance tasks in sectors such as the automotive or railway sectors, where functional safety is critical.

Currently, numerous personnel travel around the railway infrastructure every day to carry out maintenance and updating of systems that are critical for people's safety, such as traffic lights and level crossing barriers.  In addition, on a more everyday life for citizens, it is increasingly common to have to take the car to the workshop to update certain systems that affect the driving of vehicles.

Thanks to the UP2DATE project, led by the Basque technology centre IKERLAN, system updates and maintenance can be done remotely, massively, cyber-safely and with guaranteed security for people's lives.  Just as the functionalities of mobile phones are updated today, the new technology will allow to update, remotely and without risk, even when the device is running, systems in which security is a key factor and a failure can cause significant economic losses -for example, in a cyberattack-, physical harm or even threats to people's live.

IKERLAN has successfully completed the UP2DATE European research project, in which the Basque company CAF Signalling has also participated, as well as Barcelona Supercomputing Center, IAV, Marelli, Offis and TTTech Auto. As part of the Horizon 2020 programme, it has received funding of 4 million euros.

The UP2DATE project has worked with two practical demonstrators: one in the railway sector with CAF Signalling and the other in the automotive sector with the Italian firm Marelli and the multinational specialised in autonomous driving TTTech Auto.

In both cases, thanks to this new technology, the benefits are outstanding: the time required to update systems is significantly shortened - by more than 75 % in the automotive sector, and by more than 80 % in the case of rail. Moreover, the availability of vehicles is increased by more than 90 % in both sectors, as the time they have to be out of use, i.e., the train stopped or the car in the workshop is significantly reduced. Finally, another remarkable achievement of the research is that all this can be done without the need to replace or modify the current hardware systems with higher capacity ones.

The advantages of remote updates are manifold: they allow the latest developments to be installed on the control system, as if it were a smartphone, and programming errors to be corrected without the need for repair or travel by field staff. It also ensures that the system includes the latest security measures to protect it from cyberattacks.

IKERLAN began by developing and validating this technology for application in sectors such as the automotive and railway sectors, but during the course of the research, the possibility of transferring the concept to drones, AGVs, robots and other autonomous systems has been successfully explored.

In this sense, part of the technology developed in the UP2DATE project is being used in other critical sectors such as aerospace, specifically in the recently initiated European METASAT project, in which IKERLAN also participates actively.

As usual in the research projects undertaken by IKERLAN, UP2DATE has been a project aimed at covering market needs and the demonstrations carried out in the automotive and railway sectors respond to the needs demanded by both sectors: "The means of transport of the future, whether cars or trains, will be connected devices that will require developing new ways of maintaining and updating them. Our aim has been to ensure that the developments generated within the framework of UP2DATE have a place in the market, in line with the commitment to technology transfer that characterises European R&D&I projects", explains Irune Agirre, researcher on the project at IKERLAN.


IKERLAN is a leading centre in technology transfer and in the contribution of competitive value to industry. It offers integral solutions combining different technological domains in two main areas: Electronics, Information and Communication Technologies (EICT), and Energy and Mechatronics. The technology centre's team is currently made up of 400 people. As a co-operative member of the MONDRAGON Corporation and the Basque Research and Technology Alliance (BRTA), IKERLAN maintains a sustainable, competitive business model in permanent transformation.


The European UP2DATE project, led by the Basque technology centre, makes it possible to carry out remote updating and maintenance tasks, massively and cybersecurely, in areas and systems where the safety of people is key.
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