Central Railway implemented a groundbreaking solution aimed at streamlining the testing process for LHB power cars. It is the first of its kind facility installed at any coaching depots over Central Railway.
Central Railway has devised and implemented a groundbreaking solution aimed at streamlining the testing process for LHB power cars. The introduction of Static Water Load Testing Units at the coaching depots of Lokmanya Tilak Terminus (LTT) and Wadi Bunder marks a significant advancement in enhancing efficiency and reducing operational constraints. It is the first of its kind facility installed at any coaching depots over Central Railway.
The power car serves as the vital source of power for the entire train rake, supplying electricity to various components such as lights, fans, air conditioning, mobile charging points, and more. Post-maintenance repairs, the power car undergoes a crucial capacity or voltage check, commonly referred to as load testing.
Previously, this testing procedure posed significant challenges due to its time-consuming nature. The process entailed shunting of train rakes and often faced hindrances due to limited space availability, often leading to operational delays at LTT & Wadi Bunder coaching depots.
The persistent challenge faced during the post-repair testing of LHB power cars on the sick line has been addressed innovatively by the ETL (Emergency Train Lighting) Branch of Mumbai Division. Previously, the testing process necessitated shunting an LHB rake to the sick line, leading to significant delays ranging from several hours to days.
This delay stemmed from operational shunting constraints and the availability of rakes at LTT & Wadi Bunder coaching depots, consequently impeding the timely availability of spare power cars for passenger trains.
The introduction of Static Water Load Testing Units marks a paradigm shift in this process. Unlike the conventional method, these units allow for the direct attachment of power cars to the rake for service immediately after load testing.
The advantages of this innovation are multifaceted:
- Increased readiness and reliability of power cars
- Reduction in manpower previously allocated to shunting activities
- Elimination of unnecessary movement/shunting of rakes, marshalling of power cars
- Saving in Diesel Loco utilisation for load testing purposes
- Mitigation of yard congestion and optimization of line capacity
- Significant reduction in operational time for CYM (Chief Yard Master) due to the elimination of shunting for load testing
The salient features of the Static Water Load Testing Units include the following:
- Ability to conduct full load testing of 750KV, 500 KVA DG sets
- Remote operational capabilities
- Mobility facilitated by forklifts: Simple and can be moved to anywhere with the help of forklift.
- Minimal water requirements for top up
- Reliance on a 415V 3 Phase supply for induction motor operation during electrode movement.
With the installation of two units each at Wadi Bunder and LTT coaching depot sick lines, Central Railway demonstrates its commitment to technological advancement and operational efficiency. The development of each Static Water Load Testing Unit, at a cost-effective ₹ 9.5 lakh, has resulted in a total investment of ₹ 38 lakh for the currently operational four units across WB and LTT coaching depot sick lines.
The innovative solution has been developed under the guidance of Principal Chief Mechanical Engineer (PCME) Shri Sunil Kumar, Divisional Railway Manager (DRM) Mumbai Division Shri Rajnish Kumar Goyal and Sr Divisional Electrical Engineer (DEE) Mumbai Division Shri KNVSL Ramesh.
The pioneering solution exemplifies Railways’ dedication to improving operational processes and enhancing the reliability of services. The implementation of Static Water Load Testing Units also underscores Railways’ commitment to innovation and efficiency in railway operations.
Central Railway continues to set new benchmarks in railway technology and infrastructure, ensuring a seamless travel experience for passengers while optimising operational processes for enhanced efficiency.
Source: Central Railway- Press Release | Images Credit: Central Railway