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RaIL-AiD Desktop Architecture

RaIL-AiD Desktop Architecture is based on the functional division between two main parts:

The Core is the internal and stable structure of the tool, while the plugins are optional components that can be “added” to the core to enrich it with specific or user-oriented features.  Different set of plugins, together with the unique core, identify different RaIL-AiD bundles.

The interface between Rail-AiD Core and the Rail-AiD Plugins consists of API functions that identify a set of subroutine definitions, communication protocol and tools to exchange static and dynamic data.


RaIL-AiD core is the powerful kernel of the tool and provides the user with a set of functionalities that can be further complemented and expanded using a variety of Plugins. The RaIL-AiD Core features three main functional elements, which are described below.

RaIL-AiD Graphical Board


The Graphical Board is RaIL-AiD’s main window and allows the user to easily draw complete infrastructure layouts.


RaIL-AiD Data Manager


The Data Manager is an excel-like tabular data manager that enables the user to equip the track plan in a very fast and easy way.


RaIL-AiD Object Inspector


RaIL-AiD core features a dedicated module to easily load, browse, visualize and use all the entities created with the Object Modeler.


Graphical Board

The Graphical Board is RaIL-AiD’s main window and allows the user to easily draw and equip complete infrastructure layouts.

It has two underlying grids, a coarse one and a fine one, used as a reference guide for drawing tracks. The user can pan (middle mouse button) and zoom (mouse wheel) around and also draw tracks while panning and zooming.

Aiming to help the user and prevent him from making mistakes in the design, the graphical board provides the user with hints and constraints while drawing.

Data Manager

The Data Manager is an excel-like tabular data manager that enables the user to equip the track plan in a very fast and easy way.

It features the editing, ordering and filtering of the railway objects properties, allowing the simultaneous view of all the attributes’ values of the track plan elements.

Moreover, the spreadsheet functionalities help the user during the validation and verification phase, offering a global overview of all the object types and attribute values.

Object Library Loader

RaIL-AiD Core has no embedded information regarding Generic Application (GA) or Specific Application (SA) symbols and data.

All the information regarding the library objects (including the set of all the attributes with their value range and the object graphical layout) are stored into an Object Configuration file that RaIL-AiD Core loads at start-up.

This configuration file can be easily created and edited by the Object Modeler, a dedicated module allowing the user to create its own symbol’s library.

Other Core Features

Object Inspector

Side panel that allows the user to set and view the objects’ attributes

Macro Areas Viewer

Window to view the Macroscopic level of the track plan (stations and lines)

Background Importer

Import of a background image to easily copy an existing track plan and build railML® in a few minutes


Window to pan and zoom easily and to navigate effortlessly big railway drawings

Macro Areas Manager

Panel for Macro Areas management: visualization, editing, selection of stations and lines

Schematic Validator

Window that reports all the errors present in the track plan (mandatory attributes not filled, mileage inconsistencies, etc.)

Recent Objects

Side panel that stores the last inserted entities for quick layout equipment

Log Viewer

Log window reporting useful information to the user such as info, warnings and errors

Search Box

Search box to easily locate objects and rails in the track plan

RailSets Viewer

Functionality that allows an easy customization and visualization of rail sections grouping

Layer Manager

Allows to define e specific layer for each object type or object instance, choosing when to visualize it

Appearance Settings

Settings panel to customize the background, grid and object colors