The railway network in the UK is old and vast and home to the first public railway to use steam locomotives in the world. The Stockton and Darlington Railway opened in 1825 and connected coal mines in the northeast of England.
It was the metal track, the coal-fired furnace, and the shrill whistle of the industrial steam engine that truly signalled the birth of the age of rail.
But in the present day, asset owners such as Network Rail face an immense challenge to keep track of and maintain this massive array of ancient assets, but new surveying techniques are allowing them to gather enormous amounts of data and unlock new options for predictive maintenance as we move into the future of railway management.
This episode is made in partnership with Engineering Matters.