Rail is a fundamental service for modern societies and the backbone of a sustainable transport system. To meet the numerous challenges ahead, the global rail sector must increasingly rely on the emerging disruptive technologies such as advanced robotics, 3-D printing, high computing power and connectivity, etc. which are integrated with analytical and cognitive technologies that enable machine-to-machine and machine-to-human communication. On top comes the pressure to reduce energy consumption, pollution and the consumption of other resources. Mastering the breakthrough developments of new technologies is of capital importance for the railway industry to deliver smart and efficient solutions. Indeed, essential to the growth of the rail industry is the reduction of the overall life cycle exploitation costs of all rail sub-systems.