i-ATS in India | Chennai Metro Phase-2 Connectivity | RailTel Bangalore Metro | Ganga Vilas Terms | ICF Vande Bharat – Infrastructure News This Week
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India launches indigenous Train Control and Supervision System for Delhi Metro
India has achieved a major milestone by launching its first-ever indigenously developed Train Control and Supervision System. The system, called i-ATS (Indigenous-Automatic Train Supervision), has been launched by Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) on its first corridor, the Red line, which runs from Rithala to Shaheed Sthal. This makes India the sixth country to have its own ATS products, joining the ranks of France, Germany, Japan, Canada, and China.
The i-ATS system has been jointly developed by DMRC and Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) under an MoU signed in November 2022. The technology has been prepared for operations by a dedicated team of both organizations working together in a full-fledged i-ATS Lab at DMRC’s IT Park.
This project aligns with the Indian government’s “Make in India” and “AatmaNirbhar Bharat” initiatives for the Metro Rail Transit Systems. The Delhi Metro plans to install the i-ATS system on other corridors and the upcoming independent corridors of the Phase 4 Project. Preventive Maintenance modules will also be introduced in Phase 4 corridors using i-ATS.
The i-ATS system is expected to be used in other rail-based systems in the future, including Indian Railways. This technology has been developed to work with different signalling vendors’ systems with suitable changes.
The i-ATS is an important sub-system of the Communication Based Train Control (CBTC) Signalling system, which is a computer-based system that manages train operations. With this development, the country has taken a step forward in developing an indigenously built CBTC-based signalling system for the Metro railway.
Southern and Western Suburbs of Chennai to Get Metro Connectivity First in Phase-2 Project
According to officials, the southern and western suburbs of Chennai, including a portion of OMR and Porur IT hub, maybe the first to receive metro connectivity in the 118.9km phase-2 project.
Elevated stretches covering nearly 54km, such as the Power House in Kodambakkam to Poonamallee on corridor 4, CMBT to Sholinganallur via Madipakkam and Perumbakkam on corridor 5, and Sholinganallur to Nehru Nagar on corridor-3, are expected to be completed first as they can be built faster.
The Power House to Poonamallee stretch has a 2025 deadline, and other elevated stretches will be completed in a few months. Concrete work is underway near the lake and the medical college in Porur, where the median space of stretches of Mount-Poonamallee road has been barricaded.
The circular stretch will link the Porur IT hub with the one in OMR via southern suburban localities and connect localities that have poor public transport services.
The underground stretches of Chennai Metro will take time, and the tunnel boring machine is expected to arrive in 2022, with work potentially starting in October.
RailTel Wins Contract to Renovate IT Infrastructure for Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd
RailTel, a PSU under the Ministry of Railways, has been awarded a contract by Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) to renovate the IT infrastructure at 51 stations and two depots and provide comprehensive AMC services for five years, extendable for another five.
It was awarded the ₹58.17 crore contract, which excludes taxes, after a competitive, open bidding process. The company aims to utilise its railways and telecom expertise to focus on building a strong IT infrastructure to ensure seamless services for metro passengers.
The network aims to provide internet services at all BMRCL stations and depots and will have a multiple-ring architecture. RailTel’s services include MPLS VPN, leased lines, telepresence, data centre services and tower co-location.
RailTel is also working with Indian Railways to transform railway stations into digital hubs by providing public Wi-Fi across the country.
Union Minister Sonowal terms the arrival of Ganga Vilas at Dhubri a watershed moment for Northeast India’s inland waterways transportation
The arrival of the Ganga Vilas cruise ship at Dhubri in Assam has been hailed as a “watershed moment” by Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, who praised the vessel’s passage as a huge boost for river tourism in the Northeast region of India.
The ship completed its historic 39-day journey from Varanasi on 13 January, passing through Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal, as well as Bangladesh, before reaching Dhubri. The longest river cruise in the world is scheduled to end its voyage on 1 March at Bogibeel in Dibrugarh, which will mark the completion of its 51-day cruise.
After anchoring on the Brahmaputra River, guests onboard were taken to the Dhubri Customs Port to clear immigration. A local dance troupe performed the traditional Koch Rajbongshi dance while visitors enjoyed the local crafts, such as jute products and artefacts made of Terracotta and Kuhila.
The tourists will be shown around Dhubri, visiting Asarikandi village, which is known for its crafts, the Guru Teg Bahadur Sahib Ji, and Victoria Park.
The success of the Ganga Vilas’ journey will help unlock the potential of river tourism and support the region’s trickle-down development, particularly along the banks of the Brahmaputra. The historic voyage has been welcomed by officials and is part of the government’s efforts to re-energise the rich web of river systems to bring development to India’s interior.
The vessel is being escorted by the survey vessel SL Subansiri throughout its journey, while the Tug HPT Ambedkar remains on standby for assistance. The positive response from tourists onboard the ship highlights the potential for bright days of river cruise tourism on the Ganga and Brahmaputra.
Indian Railways’ Integral Coach Factory to manufacture 30 more Vande Bharat Express trains next fiscal year
Indian Railways’ Integral Coach Factory (ICF) based in Chennai plans to manufacture around 30 rakes of the Vande Bharat Express train in the next fiscal year, as part of a budgetary allotment of Rs 15,428 crore from the railways’ total budgetary outlay of Rs 2.41 lakh crore for the financial year 2023-24.
The ICF has produced 10 rakes of the indigenous semi-high-speed train, with two on the Train 18 platform and eight in Vande Bharat Version 2.0 design, since 2018-19. Production has increased to two rakes per month and is expected to reach 3-4 rakes per month after March, depending on supply inputs.
The railways plan to roll out a sleeper class version of the Vande Bharat Express, which is still in the concept stage, and will add new features on demand from passengers. Currently, the train has automatic plug doors, touch-free sliding doors, revolving seats in Executive class, 32-inch passenger information and infotainment system in every coach, KAVACH, CCTVs, better fire safety measures, and takes just 129 seconds to reach a speed of 160 km/hour.
Railway Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw announced that the production of blue and white colour trains will increase, with manufacturing taking place in Haryana’s Sonipat, Maharashtra’s Latur, and Uttar Pradesh’s Rae Bareilly. The railways have also allotted a fund of Rs 67 crores for improving the infrastructure for the manufacture of more blue and white train coaches.
Overall, the ICF’s plans for Vande Bharat Express production, the addition of a sleeper class version, and the introduction of new features are expected to enhance passenger comfort and safety, while boosting the railways’ capacity to meet growing demand.