Train Describer System to automate public address mechanism in Railways

In what may come as a huge relief for lakhs of commuters, CR is planning to install sensors adjacent to tracks, to monitor train movements in real time.

This Train Describer System will automate the entire public address mechanism. The sensors will transmit data about where a train is, to the central control room. It will pass through an interface with the public address system, feeding updates into indicators and modifying announcements.

Srinivas Mudgerikar, Chief Public Relations Officer, CR, said, “Announcements will be centralised. All announcers will then have to monitor the system and make announcements only in emergency situations.”

Presently, information on the status of trains has to be taken from Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus control room and then updated at every station through a hotline. “Today if a train is stuck between two stations, its scheduled time and expected time on the indicators cannot be updated immediately,” he added.

Overhauling the system will cost CR about Rs 36 crore. CR hopes to have the system up and running on the CST-Kalyan belt in a year.

Commuters feel one of their biggest grievances will be addressed if the new system comes through. “If we are informed immediately, it will help us make alternative arrangements, especially during the rainy season,” says commuter Devesh Rathod.

But will the data loggers fitted alongside the tracks work when they are flooded during the monsoons? “The sensors will be water-resistant,”says Mudgerikar.

Mobile Ticketing vans on trial at Delhi & Kolkata

According to the PIB release, In the Lok sabha recently declared in a written form, KH Muniyappa, Minister of State for Railways mentioned that two mobile ticketing vans have been introduced in January 2010 – one each in Delhi and Kolkata on pilot project basis.

The Total revenue earned up from April 15, 2010 since the launch of two pilot projects for Kolkata is Rs 24, 95,409 and for New Delhi – Rs 13, 62,658. The Indian Railway has also Assured that introduce mobile ticketing vans for issuing reserved and unreserved tickets in both urban and rural areas. For the being of Pilot Projects,the Indian Railways have used departmental vehicles and hired vehicles to serve the locations within the cities for checking telecom connectivity.

Published in: on April 28, 2010 at 4:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

DMRC building highest automatic washing plant in Asia

New Delhi, Apr 25 (PTI) It’s being built on a ramp at a height of 6.7 meters from the ground level and can clean two metro trains in a span of just 5 minutes.

The Automatic Train Washing Plant, which DMRC claims the highest in Asia, is coming up at the Sultanpur depot on the under-construction Central Secretariat-Gurgaon Metro corridor.

The plant will wash the external body of the metro trains and side walls of the cars with the help of vertical brushes and takes about 4 to 5 minutes for complete washing of two four-car metro trains.

The trains are usually washed during the night after the metro services come to a close at 11 PM and maintained at the depots.


Published in: on April 28, 2010 at 4:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Railways turn NG coaches into revolving restaurant

NAGPUR: South East Central Railway (SECR) here has developed two coaches of narrow gauge era into an air-conditioned revolving restaurant, which is first of its kind in India.

The restaurant has a plush interior with a seating capacity of 24 persons. The aesthetically renovated inter- connected coaches are placed on a 80 ft diameter turntable and take 14 to 15 minutes to rotate, SECR’s General Manager N S Kasturirangan said.

It is situated in the middle of about four acre of beautifully landscaped area where the Zonal Railway has a Narrow Gauge Museum.

The Nagpur division of SECR has spent nearly Rs 10 lakh on it, SECR Divisional Railway Manager, Nagpur, S N Agarwal said.

The two coaches, now turned into restaurant, were originally manufactured in 1908 and 1932 respectively, he said.

The observation car where officers can look behind through glass during inspection was built by Bengal Nagpur Railway (BNR) at Kharagpur in 1908 and another coach was built in 1932 at same place, Agarwal said.

The turn table is a marvellous mechanical engineering installation by which locomotive of steam era used to change its direction by revolving the turn table. It was set up in year 1969, Agarwal recalled.

After phasing out of steam locomotives, the turn table was lying idle since long. SECR took the advantage of this antic installation and launched the revolving air conditioned restaurant, he added.

Published in: on April 28, 2010 at 4:22 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Accessing Internet from Train will soon be Reality

Staying connected while travelling on train may soon be a reality. The Passenger Amenities Committee of Indian railways is mulling over various solutions for infotainment on board, amongst which is a touch-screen based computer unit that would allow you to access social networking sites, shopping sites etc. It is not yet clear whether this would be a pure browser based access to WWW or a customized solution for specific apps.

The service could be available in flagship trains like Shatabdi Express with shorter daytime journey, having mostly business-class passengers. The computer units could be placed behind the seats much like what we have in aircraft, which could also double up as a movie screen. -source

The touch screen would also allow you to order your meals and access on-train freight capacity auction site in real time. Research Design and Standards Organisation is working on this and a few more things so expect a lot more from Indian Railways in coming days.

Air-conditioned, rider-friendly, ‘safe’ stations

Stations on the Versova-Andheri-Ghatkopar Metro corridor would not only be air-conditioned (unlike monorail stations) and passenger-friendly but also secured, authorities said.

The Rs-2,356 crore corridor will have 12 stations, Versova, D.N. Nagar, Azad Nagar, Andheri, Western Express Highway, Chakala, Airport Road, Marol Naka, Sakinaka, Subhash Nagar, Asalpha Road and Ghatkopar.

“Each station will have a concourse level and a platform level. The automatic fare collection counters will be on the concourse level. Commuters will have to pass through the concourse level to get access to the platform level to board the train,” said SVR Srinivas, additional metropolitan commissioner, MMRDA.

The stations will be manned by a central surveillance system connected to a security control room to track every movement.

The coaches too will have CCTV cameras installed to keep a tight vigil on the minute-by-minute proceedings.

The stations will be equipped with elevators for easy access, especially for the physically challenged.

Trains will remain stationary until all doors are shut. They are so designed as to leave no gap between the train and the platform, so that accidents can be prevented while boarding and alighting.

Railway introduces new train on World Heritage route

To cope up with rising number of tourists during summer season, Northern Railways is introducing special train to run on the World Heritage Kalka-Shimla route. Shimla-based Commercial Inspector of Northern Railway Amar Singh told UNI the train, 241-A Shivalik(duplicate), having seven coaches and a carrying capacity of 200 passengers, would depart from Kalka at 0630 hrs every day and it would depart down to Kalka at 1800 hrs daily. He said the train would continue to run on the track till July 30, 2010 to cater the extra rush of tourists in wake of the summer season. He said the train is already on track from last Tuesday.

He told UNI an 18-seater Rail Car-101 is being regularised on the route and it would depart to run-up from Kalka to Shimla at 0510 hrs and down from Shimla to Kalka at 1625 hrs daily. He said earlier this Rail car was casual on the route. Mr Singh informed that now Northern Railway is plying seven rail services on narrow gauge heritage route, which include rail car and recently introduced new Shivalik Coach. He said Northern Railways plans two more special trains between the stations to keep pace with the tourist flow. He said two-trains likely to be introduced shortly on the route are 253 and 255 trains.

The 100 year old 96 km long Kalka-Shimla narrow gauge has been declared World Heritage in year 2008.

— (UNI) — 22DR80.xml

Western Railway to play cinema slides

Western Railway has adopted a novel approach of playing cinema slides in theatres to spread the social awareness messages of anti trespassing, roof top travelling, cleanliness in railway premises, etc. Western Railway has made several cinema slides and in coordination with the District Collectors of Mumbai Main, Mumbai Suburban and Thane, will be playing these slides in the theatres and multiplexes.

In an all round effort to curb social evils of trespassing and roof top travelling, Western Railway has launched Anmol Jeevan campaign, also SMS campaign has been launched to spread awareness about safety at Unmanned Level Crossings. To further this campaign now Western Railway will play the cinema slides in theaters. It is not only an effective mode of communication but also has a wider reach across all the sects of society. In its efforts to curb the social evils and make travel more comfortable and safer, Western Railway is continuously exploring newer ways to reach its public and is committed to attain this objective over a period of time.

Dish TV ties up with Railways for live TV

New Delhi, Apr 21 (PTI) For those bored during long train journeys, DTH major Dish TV today unveiled its new offering that will enable passengers to watch live television while on board.

Dish TV has partnered with the Rajasthan Tourism Development Corp (RTDC) to set up television screens on two iconic luxury trains, the Palace on Wheels and Royal Rajasthan on Wheels.

“Airlines have their in-flight entertainment systems, but the content is pre-recorded. The passengers on board these trains will now have access to live television, be it sports, news or soap operas,” Dish TV Chief Operating Officer Salil Kapoor told reporters here.

“We are in discussions with the Railways and RTDC for extending the offering to every seat, for easy viewing by each passenger. This could also be extended to other trains like Shatabdi and Rajdhanis,” he added.

PPP in railway projects to be made attractive

Shri SS Khurana, Chairman, Railway Board has called for focused attention in two areas, namely structuring of projects and procedural simplification to make railway projects attractive for private participation. He was speaking at landmark consultantation workshop with trade and Industry on Public Private Partnership (PPP) Policy Initiatives.

Khurana recalled that the theme of the pre budget interaction of the Railway Minister was to underscore the fact that a range of exciting opportunities for public private partnership in the Railways exists. While thanking the industry participants for their enthusiastic response and he also highlighted the importance that the Ministry attaches to consultation process involving users and stake holders in formulating Private Participation initiatives so as to make them attractive and acceptable.

Several policy initiatives were announced in the Minister’s Budget speech following her pre-budget interaction in February 2010. Several of these initiatives have now crystalised into draft policies.

Four such policies, viz., a New policy for port connectivity and other connectivity works (named New R3i policy-Railways’ Infrastructure for Industry Initiative), private freight terminal policy, special freight train operation scheme and policy on auto and ancillary hubs were recently uploaded on the Ministry’s website for consultation and the delegates had been invited in this workshop to provide their feedback on these policies so that their suggestions could be considered before their notification.
Salient features of these policies were presented and a number of useful suggestions to make the policies attractive and viable were received in the course of the interaction. This would help in giving finishing touch to the polices so that the final notified polices would be able to achieve their intended purpose of kindling adequate investor interest and speeding up the process of augmentation of terminal/line capacity and rolling stock.

A number of useful suggestions from the industry delegates were also received in respect of the polices/projects currently under consideration in the Ministry namely, construction of segments of DFC, newline/doubling and gauge conversion projects, connectivity projects to link coal and iron ore mines, setting up of bottling plants for clean drinking water, construction of multi-level parking complexes at stations and laying of Optic Fibre Cables.