We are very pleased
to have teamed up with Tom Edwards in the USA to collaborate in the
development of his Shipper-driven Traffic Simulator (STS) operations
software for model railroads.
STS is completely scalable from a single operator up to a relatively
large club like ours.
The program simulates real world (with some slight fine tuning for those
of us who do not work in 1:1 scale!) rail freight movements.
STS stores the industries that serve each other (inbound and outbound)
in their respective locations and generates freight tasks using specific
purpose cars for our Operations Sessions. Having generated the task,
STS provides complete tracking from the order being placed through all
the stages of the task (build switchlists, pickup cars, organise cars,
set-out cars, load/unload cars, reposition empties).
Because STS also provides complete reporting it permits us to pack up
our gear at the end of a session and simply begin where we left off
at the next session.
We run a dedicated Main Operating Session on the 2nd Saturday of every
month but, because STS can be “told” who is present on any
one day, individual member(s) can run a mini-session whenever they like.
Just like in the real world, some members can be a “railfan”
on a regular Saturday, and run a passenger service, a unit train or
mixed through freight on the mainline whilst someone else is “switching”
– our Digitrax DCC system means we can all work together.
You can see more information on STS here
and, of course, you are more than welcome to ask for an invitation to
come and see it in operation for yourself.