Guideline to Set Up a Joint Test Laboratory for Testers and their Equipment
The Danish railway made the decision to change the signalling system in the entire country. To minimise the risks, this job was divided between 3 different suppliers, which provided the signalling system with one supplier to provide the gateway solutions up against the 53 IT interfaces that had to be connected to the new signalling system, and two other suppliers to provide the radio communication and network infrastructure to be used. The plan was to first come with a basis version “One”, to be implemented on one line in Denmark in East and West, and afterwards came the roll-out to all the following lines in Denmark, with the configurations for each of the lines and extra features. This will continue until 2030.
To test the full integrations between all the suppliers involved, a Joint Test Laboratory environment was created in a house used only for this, before going out to test on the real railway in Denmark. The goal was for the laboratory to look like the future production, both for the solutions to test but also for the infrastructure and its cabling.
Therefore, I began as Programme Test Manager in 2013, with the job of setting up a Joint Test Laboratory environment called JTL, which was to be used for testing by all the suppliers and by the customer from Banedanmark. Both the suppliers and the customer installed all the equipment to be used in the new server room that was created for this.
This presentation is on how to do all of this, and how we run JTL today, where sometimes, there are testers and IT experts from 16 different countries in JTL, who are running 5 different tests at the same time, with 50 people in the test room. The following week, there may perhaps only be 20 people, but where 15 of them are coming for the first time and are only to attend that week’s testing.
For this setup to work, you need to have processes and policies that can handle this, or else chaos will happen fast.