We look back on an exciting and successful Monorailex Conference 2021. During the planning period it wasn’t clear if we would be able to host the Conference in-person, but we were lucky that Italy lifted some of its restrictions early, and with great support from Marino Torre (Hitachi) and Agostino Marioni (Hirun) we could host the Conference in-person in Milan.

Due to still ongoing COVID19 restrictions, some members and interested parties from Egypt, Brazil, India, China, and other countries around the globe couldn’t attend in-person, but the conference was set up as a hybrid event which made it possible to attend over Zoom; and with this to contribute to a successful event with valuable presentations and lively discussions.


We strive to keep our members safe and healthy while continuing to support the monorail industry during these tough times. This year Monorailex was held via Virtual Meeting to ensure the safety of our members and colleagues. The Virtual Meeting was organized in a series of activities that began on 19 September to 22 September, in 3 to 4-hour sessions each day.

The purpose and goal of the Virtual Workshop 2020 was to work on the further development of the association as well as the strategic direction for its future.

During last year’s assembly meeting (MONORAILEX 2019) that was held in Chiba, Japan, the IMA implemented two working groups whose focus was to further the development of the association.

Monorailex 2019

The 11th International Monorail Associations Annual Conference (Monorailex 2019) was held at the Hotel the Manhattan in Chiba, Japan from November 24 to 27, 2019.  This event took place ahead of the Mass-Trans Innovation Japan 2019, held at the Makuhari Messe International Convention Center in Chiba. This year's conference format included presentations of scholarly papers, technical tours and networking opportunities with other professionals in the field of monorail.

Monorailex 2018

The 10th International Monorail Association Annual Conference (Monorailex 2018) was held at the Novotel Hotel am Tiergarten in Berlin, Germany from September 13 to 15, 2018. Monorailex conferences aim to provide a platform for experts and scholars in the field of monorail transportation and business development to share knowledge, discuss existing problems, opportunities, and challenges, while strengthening international cooperation for this cutting-edge technology. The format for Monorail 2018 included presentations of scholarly papers, roundtable workshop sessions, technical tours and opportunities to network with other professionals in the field. We thank everyone for their participation.

Monorailex 2017

The International Monorail Association, Beijing Jiaotong University, and China Monorail Transportation Development Research Center announced Monorailex 2017. The conference and exhibition took place at Beijing Jiaotong University, in Beijing, China, September 7-9, with an impressive list of Chinese companies co-organizing the event. The event showcased the progress in the Monorail and Maglev fields, and included International and Chinese exhibitors. There were three tracks in the presentations: Vehicle, Systems, and Infrastructure. 

ASCE APM Meeting 2016 - Toronto, Canada

Members of the Executive Committee traveled to Toronto, Canada to attend the ASCE 15th International Conference on Automated People Movers and Automated Transit Systems on April 17-20, 2016. The Executive Members identified areas of interest where IMA contributed to ASCE 21 elements of the Performance Specifications to capture Mass Transit Monorail characteristics.

Webinar: Monorail Power Rails - Critical Considerations for Powering Monorails/APM Systems

The International Monorail Association held an international webinar with Keith Forman of Conductix, a company that designs, manufactures, and installs/services a wide range of conductor bar systems, transit conductor rails, slip ring assemblies, and inductive power transfer (IPT®) systems, as well as cable festoons, spring driven cable reels, and motor driven cable reels. When: April 14, 2016, 7:00 AM, Pacific Standard Time (UTC -08:00) Who: Keith Forman, Conductix

Monorailex 2015

At the International Monorail Association, we believe that at the heart of every big city there is an opportunity for people to get to work, school, shop, visit friends, etc. conveniently, reliably, and efficiently. That goal requires assessment of what the conditions are on the ground, what the patterns of user preferences are, what the services presently available are in the form of buses, taxis, underground, what the gaps in service are, as well as the volume of passengers involved. Once the existing physical infrastructure is assessed, the planning on how to satisfy the gaps comes next. All the undertakings mentioned above constitute the steps to assess physical infrastructure. What is missing in many communities is the social infrastructure that allows the projects to be explored. In other words, what is missing is the knowledge base in a given field that could be used, transferred to other environments. That is one of the goals of the International Monorail Association meetings: to create an opportunity for the social infrastructure to be set in place, to learn about what portions of a project were successful, which decisions should be avoided, what technologies are being studied and explored in research institutions. Monorailex 2015 occurred this past November 2015. During the sessions there was a lot of learning in the various fields. Our field trips were also instructional. We experienced the hospitality of the members of the Las Vegas Monorail Company, showcasing their Innovia 200 trains, and Doppelmayr Cable Car Company, showcasing the systems at Aria and Excalibur. Both companies opened their maintenance facilities and vehicles to our delegates. Those who attended Monorailex 2015 can attest about the technical value, camaraderie, and friendships that develop during these meetings. The general membership present at the event decided a number of things:

  • To create a new category of membership, the Association Member. This category will allow IMA to extend membership status to associations dealing with transportation related issues and to solicit membership on their associations
  • To remove the joining fee as a way to streamline the membership experience.
  • To hold our next 2016 meeting in Cologne, Germany, or its vicinity.
  • To issue comments to the ASCE 21 document to have it reflect mass transit monorail needs.
  • To distribute some of the papers presented in the sessions to people interested in the field of monorails and Automated People Movers.

There are relevant tasks ahead of us in 2016; working on our comments to the ASCE 21 documents, multiple new projects are coming on line, and ensure the learnings of previous projects get incorporated into the new ones. This is also the time to innovate and be open to the opportunity monorail transportation systems provides the owners and users in terms of efficient design and operation. Let’s recommit to the tasks ahead of us. See more photos here!

Webinar: Increasing Fire Safety- A Holistic Approach

An international webinar was held by our member Roger Dirksmeier with FOGTEC, a company dedicated to the covering an important topic in mass transit: Increasing Fire Safety- A Holistic Approach. The talk expanded on how to make use of innovative technologies and processes to increase fire safety and efficiency in modern mass transportation systems. About Roger Dirksmeier: Mr. Roger – A. Dirksmeier General Manager – Rail Systems FOGTEC Fire Protection, Cologne, Germany. During his study at the “Cologne University of Applied Sciences” for vehicle engineering, Roger had first time deep contact with the railway industry and had to work out fire protection concepts for fire protection solutions in metro vehicles (1998). To finalize the Technical Engineering degree (specialized in “track-guided vehicles” and “traction technologies”) Roger did his master thesis at Deutsche Bahn, the best-known German railway operator, with the focus on fire risk analysis and fire protection concepts for railway vehicles. Afterwards he joined FOGTEC Fire Protection in Cologne to develop the market for rolling stock applications with innovative and customized solutions for active fire protection. The Rail Systems team of FOGTEC is today the world market leader for active fire protection solutions in railway vehicles and has references all over the world with more than installed 12.000 systems. Roger, now in his 15th year at FOGTEC, heads all railway activities and is joining several normative and research groups throughout the world touching fire protection in railway systems.