Upgraded European Train Control System Makes World Debut With Namo Bharat Service


The operation of the first phase, the 17-km-long Duhai-Sahibabad section of the Delhi-Meerut corridor for commuters, marks the world debut of the Level 3 European Train Control System (ETCS), an accident prevention system in the semi-high speed network.

The state-of-the-art Level 3 ETCS will not only contribute to safety, but also will facilitate interoperability, reduce wait time and enable efficiency.

India’s rail revolution reached a milestone on 20 October with the inauguration of Namo Bharat service, India’s first rapid regional train, with its rolling stock and signaling solutions provided by Alstom India.

Alstom India is making the world debut of ETCS Level 3 signaling, with integrated platform screen doors using long-term evolution (LTE) communication with the Namo Bharat rapid rail service.

These solutions are designed and stacked together to provide utmost safety to passengers.

Commenting on this landmark moment, Olivier Loison, managing director, Alstom India said, “It is a moment of pride for us at Alstom to yet again be a part of India’s rail revolution. Namo Bharat will be a first-of-its-kind experience for Indian commuters for its speed, advanced technology and passenger experience. This project also marks the world premiere of several new Signaling technologies which will set new benchmarks in the rail space globally. All of this is set to make Sustainable Mobility at scale real in India.”

Loison further said, “These Made-in-India trains reflect our robust capabilities, and we are truly humbled to be contributing to India’s rail-based infrastructure growth.”

Designed and manufactured in India, Namo Bharat service reinstates Alstom’s commitment to Atmanirbhar Bharat with end-to-end engineering, manufacturing and signalling work done in India.

In the last two years, Alstom’s over 360 engineers and designers devoted thousands of safe manhours, ran hundreds of hours of tests to deliver the phase-I commitments to National Capital Region Transport Corporation Ltd. (NCRTC).

The company is aiming to also achieve its delivery commitments by 2025.

A key feature of the technology being introduced in Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) is interoperability, which facilitates seamless commuter movement across the corridors, without the hassle of changing the trains for passengers.

ETCS signaling system will not only facilitate interoperability but will also allow to optimise the usage of existing infrastructure, thus reducing the waiting time for passengers.

This signaling system provides high level of safety for trains running at close headway of 180 seconds by virtual block implementation (hybrid level 3) to ensure continuous and safe separation and eliminates accidents due to human error.

This service also comes with Automatic Train Protection, Traffic Management System, and Platform Screen Door sub-systems using LTE communication between track side and train.

Designed at Alstom’s Hyderabad engineering centre and manufactured at Savli (Gujarat), these trains perfectly align with the government’s Aatmanirbhar Bharat ambition. The rolling stock is based on Alstom’s ‘commuter’ train family, incorporating worldwide experience.

The propulsion systems and electricals are manufactured at the company’s factory in Maneja (Gujarat). Namo Bharat will play a key role in promoting balanced and sustainable economic development of the region.

The advanced, eco-friendly design will bring significant efficiencies through the incorporation of energy-saving technologies, including the modern car body, reliable bogies, efficient propulsion system and regenerative braking.

Outstanding ergonomics, safety and comfort, low life cycle costs and high recyclability also contribute to making these new commuter trains an attractive sustainable choice to promote public transport, thereby reducing traffic congestion, air pollution and fuel consumption.

In 2020, Alstom was awarded the contract and the scope of work included: design, build, and deliver the trainsets.

Design, supply and install the signaling, train control and telecommunication system, platform screen door and LTE is completed for the 17-km priority section for the launch.

The primary purpose of this RRTS is to relieve the traffic congestion in the national capital and de-urbanise the city by allowing faster commute between nearby satellite towns. Since 2002, after the opening of first section of DMRC, the metro network has grown at a rapid pace.

The RRTS network will complement the metro system and is expected to grow very fast in the country.