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Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

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Rishi Verma
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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Rishi Verma » 27 Mar 2017 23:11

shiv wrote:^^thx
Crisp and to the point informative


But incorrect


HakimJi i am glad you are satisfied with the answer. But few points i learned after reading up about air friction vis railways might interest you.

Based on the following reference

http://www.google.co.in/url?q=http://ww ... dAp5j_cBOA


1) air resistance affecting of the entire train needs to be taken into account not just on the locomotive

2) slide 25 shows the graph where air friction almost doubles that of rolling friction and journal friction combined at speed exceeding 80mph

3) slide 33 has a Train Equation (also called Davis' Equation)

"trust but verify"

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vsunder » 28 Mar 2017 01:21

arshyam wrote:Suresh Prabhu's focus on infra is paying off. The short but crucial 4th track in the north of Chennai was inspected and is expected to be thrown open soon. This will now complete the quad track sections radiating in 3 cardinal directions from Central/Chennai port - Attipattu 22 km to the north, Arakkonam 70km to the west, and Tambaram 30km south. This last line has an additional 3rd track coming between Tambaram and Chengalpattu, which is another 30km south. Once they finish the planned double line from Beach, which is next to the Chennai port, goods movement will gain a further fillip. There is also a plan to connect the Ennore port directly to the Mumbai line near Puttur, which is a few km short of Renigunta after the line turns north from Arakkonam.

Good news for the 3 ports in the city, and to suburban train travellers.



Poor poor Manoharan, CRS Southern Circle. Poor, poor all CRS's in India. No rest for them, they are getting dragged day and night all over India for line openings and inspections. In addition to 4th line, above:

Last Friday Pollachi-Podanur gauge conversion CRS, before that Mathur-Vriddachalam CRS, March 30th Valadi-Trichinopoly second line and electrification, March 31st Mannaparai onwards to Kalpatichatram CRS inspection on Trichy-Dindigul line
for doubling and electrification. Only 20km left in doubling and electrification between Chennai-Madurai.
I will post videos of all this eventually. A few weeks ago Aryanakavu-Shengottai and Edamon-Punalur and Nellamangala-Hassan. Manoharan is a very tired man. Hassan-Yeshwanthpur intercity started Sunday, after 20 years this new line is operational. When the train reached Hassan there were very loud cheers and just delight.
If I start with other zones it is a long list. All can light up your Black Tiger Trichonopoly cheroot, and be careful of
Sherlock Holmes who knows that a Trichinopoly leaves an ash that is dark and flaky like what he did In a Study in Scarlet.

Also Ro-Ro in Delhi is a non-starter and plan has fallen through. OHE is too low due to low ROB's and trucks and lorries will hit traction wires unless less than 3.5 metres height. No takers for this height so the scheme of avoiding pollution in NCR area using Ro-Ro is on hold for the moment. They could fix it by having wagons low to the ground but that is another set of problems.
Last edited by vsunder on 28 Mar 2017 03:26, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vsunder » 28 Mar 2017 03:25

CRS inspection GC Podanur to Pollachi last Friday

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IdVT1bs ... e=youtu.be

Intercity Yeshwantpur-Hassan on the new line. This is the first train on this line. SWR claims no trains to Mangalore due to shortage of rakes, did the bus lobby strike again:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FqGXMS3qVtA

Train arrives in Kunigal, first train in history to come to Kunigal, entire town turns out

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_fxGLLSjqc

Train enters Hassan, excited crowds

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FWXTmmrXYYU


The last 1.5km at Srirangapatna, track linking to be over by March 31st as Tipu's armoury is now shifted. CRS inspection for double line electrified upto Mysore to be done soon within 5-6 months after substations are up and running.

Other inspections that have taken place around India:(last two months)

1. Itarsi - Pipariya electrification (on Howrah-Mumbai line via Allahabad-Jabalpur, Bagri-Tawa bridge is also coming up to double the small single line section on Prince Albert viaduct)
2. Cheoki - Shankargarh electrification (same as above near Allahabad)
3. Pilibhit - Majhola Pakadia newly converted BG line
4. Sojat Road - Marwar Bhinmal second line (Delhi-Ahmedabad doubling project, this runs parallel to WDFC,
so in all there will be 4 lines, 2 for WDFC and 2 IR)
5. Parbhani - Mirkhal second line
6. Tilati - Akalkot Road second line (between Gulbarga-Solapur, Mumbai-Chennai trunk line, this section still to be electrified)
7. Wakav - Mohol second line (between Solapur-Daund on Mumbai-Chennai trunk line, still to be electrified)
8. Dulabhachera - Baraigram newly converted BG line
9. Tarapit Road - Rampurhat third line
10. Hirakud - Godbhaga second line
11. Singapuram road - Lanjigarh Road electrification
12. Hadapa - Saragipali second line
13. Bolagarh Road - Rajasunakala new line
14. Chappra - Thawe newly converted BG line
15. Sukri Mangela - Ghunsore newly converted BG line (Satpura Narrow gauge railway GC, between Gondia-Jabalpur, this section is in particular between Jabalpur and Nainpur, Will provide an alternate path between Southern India, and Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Allahabad and Bihar, which bypasses Itarsi and takes load off it)
Trains are already running on GC Jabalpur-Sukrimangela commissioned Nov 2016. This was fast.

Other projects that have had CRS inspection and are being commissioned within a month:

1. Ginigera - Chikkabenakal new line (part of Hospet-Raichur new line, will aid in moving coal etc from Mormugoa port to Raichur Thermal power plant)
2. Nelamangala - Hassan new line(see above first train ran on it last Sunday)
3. Morthad - Nizamabad new line
4. Devarakadra - Jaklair new line
5. Kalyanadurgam - kadirideverapalli new line (Rayadurga-Tumkur new line, will provide a shorter route to Hospet from Bangalore and may help in a quicker journey to Hampi)
6. Mantralayam Rd.(Brindavana of Shri Raghavendra swami)- Matumari second line (bridge over Tungabhadra river, Chennai-Mumbai doubling project. The original bridge over the Tungabhadra river was designed by the grandfather of Alan Turing the famous computer scientist. His mother was born in the Podanur railway colony) with this Chennai-Gulbarga is completely double lined and only 195 km between Gulbarga-Akkalkot and Kurduwadi(junction for Pandharpur)-Daund is left for doubling between Chennai-Mumbai. Electrification is another matter. Mumbai-Daund-Bhigwan is electrified and Chennai-Guntakal is electrified for sure and about 400km not electrified between Chennai and Mumbai.
7. Tiruvalla-Changanaserry Doubling and electrification ( Kochi-Trivandrum via Kottayam doubling project) commissioned.
8. Edamon-Punalur and Aranyakavu-Sengottai, GC, on Kollam-Sengottai GC project, commissioned.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby arshyam » 28 Mar 2017 07:16

As usual, lots of detailed updates!

vsunder wrote:CRS inspection GC Podanur to Pollachi last Friday
Palakkad-Pollachi GC is already done, right?

Intercity Yeshwantpur-Hassan on the new line. This is the first train on this line. SWR claims no trains to Mangalore due to shortage of rakes, did the bus lobby strike again:
There is a lot of demand for better connectivity on this route, but a severe paucity of trains. SWR claims too much freight movement, rake shortage, etc. Even the latest demand for starting the already announced Kudla express seems to be in abeyance. It's sad that BLR is much better connected to MAS and CBE than MAQ. Heck, MAS is better connected to MAQ! In general, I don't know if it is all due to the bus lobby, but intercity/overnight trains with KA are a poor shadow of what one sees in TN or AP.

The last 1.5km at Srirangapatna, track linking to be over by March 31st as Tipu's armoury is now shifted. CRS inspection for double line electrified upto Mysore to be done soon within 5-6 months after substations are up and running.
I assume they will commission the double line without waiting for electrification? This was the last bottleneck, IIRC.

6. Mantralayam Rd.(Brindavana of Shri Raghavendra swami)- Matumari second line (bridge over Tungabhadra river, Chennai-Mumbai doubling project. The original bridge over the Tungabhadra river was designed by the grandfather of Alan Turing the famous computer scientist. His mother was born in the Podanur railway colony) with this Chennai-Gulbarga is completely double lined and only 195 km between Gulbarga-Akkalkot and Kurduwadi(junction for Pandharpur)-Daund is left for doubling between Chennai-Mumbai. Electrification is another matter. Mumbai-Daund-Bhigwan is electrified and Chennai-Guntakal is electrified for sure and about 400km not electrified between Chennai and Mumbai.
I was going to ask about the Tungabhadra bridge :). This was a major pending work forcing traffic to slow down for the single line bridge. How much time do you think the remaining work will take? Any major bridges holding up the work? I don't care for electrification if I can get the extra track to begin with. In any case, Mumbai bound trains are running under electric traction all the way up to Guntakal, which is a substantial improvement over the short MAS-RU (Renigunta) stretch. Even trains out of BLR are now under electric traction (Prashanthi express last week was hauled by an ED WAP4). With the exception of the Rajdhani and Karnataka, the rest would move to electric traction soon.

All fine and dandy, but the pressure on Erode and RPM to supply electric locos will increase significantly. ED especially is already stretched, trying to cover the entire KL region (which will soon include the northern stretch to MAQ) and BLR+CBE traffic. Not to mention their stubborn hold over 'prestigious' links like TN and KL expresses :). RPM is a smaller shed and has to deal with northbound links out of MAS, and the line toward MDU. AJJ was converted into a pure goods shed, not sure if they have any passenger locos left. That would help. Otherwise, GTL shed will need to start operations soon to relieve the pressure, or all these wires will be there, but trains running with D locos - any idea where GTL plan is at?

IMHO, electrifying the BLR - GTL single line was a case of misplaced priorities. Ghat section notwithstanding, doubling the line first would have gone a long way in relieving congestion on this stretch. It is like the NH-7 highway being only a 2 lane road :). What the BLR region needs is not electrification (that can come later), but more double tracks radiating out of the city.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby arshyam » 28 Mar 2017 07:33

Rishi Verma wrote:1) air resistance affecting of the entire train needs to be taken into account not just on the locomotive

That's right. That's why the WAP-4 "aerodynamic" locos are anything but :lol:. But for the speeds they run at, and the length of the trains (24 heavy ICF coaches), they are good enough. Reliability and ruggedness trumps aesthetics, and the WAP-4s are some of the most reliable locos around.

The conversion to LHB rakes will start the process as they are lighter to begin with. Not having dynamo batteries as in the ICF coaches means lesser resistance and tractive effort to move them. These two changes alone will make up the lack of aero styling on the loco. But the inter-coach gaps still remain, which will have to be addressed. Not sure how much different that will make for 110-130 kmph ops though, which is the bulk of IR passenger traffic.

But these LHB rakes can be efficiently utilized only when hotel load is enabled, i.e. locos power the coaches' electric fittings, AC etc. (LHB coaches have no batteries). Apparently, WAP-4s don't have that facility (could be wrong about this), and IR has been reticent getting it working on the newer and more powerful WAP-7. The big bad American diesels may have, but the SDRE Alcos don't*. Without that, these LHB coaches need a diesel generator to power them, and for fail safe reasons each train has 2 generator coaches. 2 extra coaches that don't need to be there. Even with hotel load, I am told there will be one generator coach for backup - so that's still dead weight they'll lug around.

* It's funny that I call the Alcos as 'SDRE' since they are also of Amriki origin. Alco: American locomotive co. which went defunct in the sixties itself. IR/DLW used the platform (WDM-2) to come up with a with a variety of diesel locos, which have faithfully served as IR's backbone for a long time: WDM-2, 2A, 2B, 3A, 3D, WDG-1, 2, 3A, WDP-1, 2, 3A, etc.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vsunder » 28 Mar 2017 07:46

arshyam wrote:As usual, lots of detailed updates!

vsunder wrote:CRS inspection GC Podanur to Pollachi last Friday
Palakkad-Pollachi GC is already done, right?

Intercity Yeshwantpur-Hassan on the new line. This is the first train on this line. SWR claims no trains to Mangalore due to shortage of rakes, did the bus lobby strike again:
There is a lot of demand for better connectivity on this route, but a severe paucity of trains. SWR claims too much freight movement, rake shortage, etc. Even the latest demand for starting the already announced Kudla express seems to be in abeyance. It's sad that BLR is much better connected to MAS and CBE than MAQ. Heck, MAS is better connected to MAQ! In general, I don't know if it is all due to the bus lobby, but intercity/overnight trains with KA are a poor shadow of what one sees in TN or AP.

The last 1.5km at Srirangapatna, track linking to be over by March 31st as Tipu's armoury is now shifted. CRS inspection for double line electrified upto Mysore to be done soon within 5-6 months after substations are up and running.
I assume they will commission the double line without waiting for electrification? This was the last bottleneck, IIRC.

6. Mantralayam Rd.(Brindavana of Shri Raghavendra swami)- Matumari second line (bridge over Tungabhadra river, Chennai-Mumbai doubling project. The original bridge over the Tungabhadra river was designed by the grandfather of Alan Turing the famous computer scientist. His mother was born in the Podanur railway colony) with this Chennai-Gulbarga is completely double lined and only 195 km between Gulbarga-Akkalkot and Kurduwadi(junction for Pandharpur)-Daund is left for doubling between Chennai-Mumbai. Electrification is another matter. Mumbai-Daund-Bhigwan is electrified and Chennai-Guntakal is electrified for sure and about 400km not electrified between Chennai and Mumbai.
I was going to ask about the Tungabhadra bridge :). This was a major pending work forcing traffic to slow down for the single line bridge. How much time do you think the remaining work will take? Any major bridges holding up the work? I don't care for electrification if I can get the extra track to begin with. In any case, Mumbai bound trains are running under electric traction all the way up to Guntakal, which is a substantial improvement over the short MAS-RU (Renigunta) stretch. Even trains out of BLR are now under electric traction (Prashanthi express last week was hauled by an ED WAP4). With the exception of the Rajdhani and Karnataka, the rest would move to electric traction soon.

All fine and dandy, but the pressure on Erode and RPM to supply electric locos will increase significantly. ED especially is already stretched, trying to cover the entire KL region (which will soon include the northern stretch to MAQ) and BLR+CBE traffic. Not to mention their stubborn hold over 'prestigious' links like TN and KL expresses :). RPM is a smaller shed and has to deal with northbound links out of MAS, and the line toward MDU. AJJ was converted into a pure goods shed, not sure if they have any passenger locos left. That would help. Otherwise, GTL shed will need to start operations soon to relieve the pressure, or all these wires will be there, but trains running with D locos - any idea where GTL plan is at?

IMHO, electrifying the BLR - GTL single line was a case of misplaced priorities. Ghat section notwithstanding, doubling the line first would have gone a long way in relieving congestion on this stretch. It is like the NH-7 highway being only a 2 lane road :). What the BLR region needs is not electrification (that can come later), but more double tracks radiating out of the city.


Arshyam I shall try to answer what I know:

1. You saw the video of Podanur-Pollachi CRS inspection that I linked. It was done Friday, so CRS report and then some rectification if needed and then they open. It will be a direct link from Coimbatore and parts of Kongunadu to South TN and temple towns Palani etc. The Pallakad-Pollachi GC link which has been operational for some time will allow a Pilgrimage express, that does Gokarna, Udipi and Mookambika on Konkan, then south past Mangalore to Kaladi, Guruvayoor, then Pallakad, then, Palani, Madurai, Trichy and ends at Rameshwaram. Many people would like to see such a train. Maybe when the Karnaprayag-Rishikesh link is done in a decade one can have a train from Karnaprayag(for Badrinath and Kedarnath) to Rameswaram. Can touch Ujjain and then go on GC,
Mhow-Khandwa and also touch Omkareshwar, so 5 Jyotirlingas including Tryambak(Nashik rd.) so call it Jyotirlinga express. Kedarnath, Ujjain, Omkareshwar, Tryambak, Rameshwaram.

2. Line block and non-interlocking signals for 17-20th March for Matamari-Mantralayam rd. so commissioning is within a few days.

3. Yes ED e-locos are stretched. Remember our poor Manoharan, a few weeks ago he inspected and okayed 64 km Mangalore-Charvattur OHE as you say so end to end Chennai-Mangalore is doubled and electrified. So now that section needs e-locos for West Coast, Mangalore Mail, Egmore exp. leave alone Parsuram, Malabar exp, Ernad exp plying between Mangalore and Trivandrum. If you put in Rajdhani and others between Trivandrum and parts North via Mangalore and Konkan railway, then yes ED shed is stretched and yes you pre-empted them, they have complained that they have few locos to spare. Mangalore-Mangalore Harbour(Panambur) electrification is moving slowly, I hope it is done by year end. Then electrified right up to the SR-Konkan railway border.

4. Regarding bus lobby, it is very powerful. Many of them get awards for "social service" on Karnataka Rajyotsava day. SWR maintains it is the paucity of rakes that prevents them starting Kudla express. Kudla actually means Junction in Konkani but Tulu speakers also refer to Mangalore as Kudla.

Poor Manoharan is everywhere nowadays, one day Mangalore, next day Chennai, they seek me here, they seek me there, those damned DRM's seek me everywhere, they seek me in heaven, they seek me in hell, the death defying.......

%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%
This is the announcement of Mohol-Vakav, DRM Solapur also tweeted, so seems commissioned as this
is non-interlocking work to connect signals to the new double line.
LINE BLOCK IN SUR DIVN OF CR - DOUBLING OF GTL-WADI-GR-SUR-DD

Traffic Blocks between Mohol – Vakav section of Solapur Division from 1.2.2017 to 5.2.2017



Traffic Blocks between Mohol – Vakav section of Solapur Division from 1.2.2017 to 5.2.2017

Central Railway will operate a special traffic blocks for Non-Interlock working in connection with doubling of Mohol - Vakav section of Solapur Division commencing from 1.2.2017 to 5.2.2017 (5 days).

%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

Here is the answer to your other question: This is non-interlocking work

In order to facilitate works related to commissioning of Double line between Matmari – Mantralayam Road stations of Guntakal Division, traffic blocks are imposed from 17thto 20th March, 2017. Consequently, the following passenger trains are partially cancelled as detailed below.

Trains Partially Cancelled:
1.Train No. 57631 Solapur-Guntakal passenger journey commences o­n 18th, 19th and 20th March, 2017 is partially cancelled between Raichur and Guntakal stations.
2.Train No. 57632 Guntakal-Gulbarga passenger journey commences o­n 18th, 19th and 20th March, 2017 is partially cancelled between Guntakal andRaichurstations.
3.Train No. 57428 Guntakal- Raichur passenger journey commences o­n 17th, 18th and 19th March, 2017 is partially cancelled between Adoni andRaichurstations.
4.Train No. 57427 Raichur – Guntakal passenger journey commences o­n 18th, 19th and 20thMarch, 2017is partially cancelled between Raichur and Adonistations.
%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%
Regarding Bangalore, the Arsikere-Tumkur doubling earthworks are moving very fast, and also Hubli-Chikjajur doubling. Center has released ample funds and gotten on their case. Also Hotgi-Gadag doubling is moving fast and bypass line at Hotgi is done. This line past Bijapur is very important and Cabinet has released ample funds. Kudgi super thermal plant, many steel industries are coming up in this backward part of North Karnataka and doubling will help the movement of freight rakes. Kudgi station was recently upgraded with several loop lines as the super thermal plant is getting ready and needs ample siding and connectivity. As I say India badal raha hai teji se.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby shiv » 28 Mar 2017 09:53

Rishi Verma wrote:1) air resistance affecting of the entire train needs to be taken into account not just on the locomotive

2) slide 25 shows the graph where air friction almost doubles that of rolling friction and journal friction combined at speed exceeding 80mph

3) slide 33 has a Train Equation (also called Davis' Equation)

"trust but verify"

Thanks for trying but read the question before attempting to provide an answer.

How does the aerodynamic shape of the face of the engine affect performance of a 500 ton train doing 120 kmph? You have not answered the question. In fact you have not provided any answer at all. You have only said that the length of train must be "taken into account" The question was about the locomotive face and the answer I got first was what I was looking for.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Rishi Verma » 28 Mar 2017 10:04

shiv wrote:
Rishi Verma wrote:1) air resistance affecting of the entire train needs to be taken into account not just on the locomotive

2) slide 25 shows the graph where air friction almost doubles that of rolling friction and journal friction combined at speed exceeding 80mph

3) slide 33 has a Train Equation (also called Davis' Equation)

"trust but verify"

Thanks for trying but read the question before attempting to provide an answer.

How does the aerodynamic shape of the face of the engine affect performance of a 500 ton train doing 120 kmph? You have not answered the question. In fact you have not provided any answer at all. You have only said that the length of train must be "taken into account" The question was about the locomotive face and the answer I got first was what I was looking for.


dude, you have major ego issue and never say "oops i was wrong",

Where did i say "length" of the train?

You need reading glasses hakimJi, because i gave you references with page numbers but still you make a spectacle of yourself.

Its actually a social experiment for me, if a doc says Chicken is a Pig, how to convince him... No amount of convincing will work with 1/2 learned egoistic people

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Indranil » 28 Mar 2017 10:41

I was always fascinated with this question. How come cars that run at the same speed as a train benefit from aerodynamic shaping but trains do not. I am sure the loco designers are not fools to leave a simple shaping out of the design given the cost of each locomotive!

Actually it lies in the fact that the frontal part of the locomotive is a minuscule part of the trains aerodynamic drag. Much more significant drag comes from the gaps between cars and undercarriages. People have studied how to reduce this drag for example by installing outward blowing fans in the gap between cars, etc. The study that Rishi Saar posted earlier is on the similar lines on how to arrange the cars such that the gaps between them is optimized for lower drag. Notice that they never suggested streamlining the face of the loco. Unfortunately, Rishi saar is already all-knowing. So, he doesn't need to learn anything new and can limit himself to conducting social experiments.

On high speed trains, shaping matters. Also notice that they have a fairing to cover the gap between the cars and to keep the airflow from interacting with the undercarriage.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vina » 28 Mar 2017 13:27

Indranil wrote:I was always fascinated with this question. How come cars that run at the same speed as a train benefit from aerodynamic shaping but trains do not.

Reynolds Number difference. Consider the length of a train vs. the length of a car / truck. There is scale effect in this . A longer body will require PROPORTIONALLY less powering than a shorter body. Same reason why they have "Road trains" in Australia. You hitch three or 4 trailers together as a train, the powering requirements drop proportionally.

Added later. The train will have predominantly friction drag and hence streamlined, while a truck because of shorter length has significantly high pressure drag and hence streamlining of the nose and taper in rear is important. For high speed trains, peak pressure when entering a tunnel or when crossing an oncoming train in the opposite track can get very high, so streamlining nose in high speed trains might be done I think.
Last edited by vina on 28 Mar 2017 21:43, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Zynda » 28 Mar 2017 14:56

Rishi,
Thx for posting that presentation. It was a good read.

Hakimji, thanks for raising your question. Forced me to do some amateurish research. In anycase, I did learn something new by this exercise. Apparently, the frontal face shaping does not affect drag a whole lot at speeds below 85 mph. Also I did not know that cars behind the loco would contribute to the drag in that intensity. Found this post on a Train Magazine forum...a little longish read but for me it was worth it. Also corroborates with literature posted by Rishi.

The longitudinal air resistance of any substantial train due to aerodynamic drag on the power is not a major proportion of train resistance at typical track speeds. You are correct in thinking that the major component of train resistance is at the cars, not at the locomotives. The situation is, of course, progressively different as speed advances above about 85 to 90 mph, with nose streamlining becoming essential, but you should also consider that the built-up regions of high pressure ahead of the locomotive function quite effectively as a streamlined 'nose cone' and very little actual reshaping or vanes are required to control this quite effectively. If you don't believe this, ask yourself why a pickup with full tailgate gets better mileage than the same model with one of those stupid "flow-through" panels...

Meanwhile -- we're not in the cab-and-booster era any more, and unlikely to return to it in freight service... ask the railroaders on the list why if you haven't read the previous threads on the general subject. If you have three identical locomotives in the consist... how do you streamline them all effectively? Just pointing the nose isn't going to help too much. There isn't much involved in putting a Genesis cab on a Dash-9 style unit; ask yourself why even with fuel at current levels, no railroad is doing this. Yeah, I know, it's godless capitalism... but capitalism is a mighty good determinant of action when money's at stake... and saving money is really what your take on streamlining is implicitly about.

Fans blowing air into the gaps between cars would likely consume far more power than would be used to overcome the drag attributable to the gaps -- completely aside from the capital cost of providing them. (And what would you propose for the gaps where there are empties?) I'd like to see the reference for this idea.

A somewhat 'better' solution is inflatable diaphragms at the car ends... the idea being to give reasonable flow stabilization past the gaps, not provide perfect 'streamlining'. It is also possible to use active or passive vanes or airfoils to control some of this. My opinion is that it's the instabilities, not the 'air resistance' per se, that causes the major problems at freight speeds. The cost and operational complexities of these systems generally precludes their adoption in routine service -- just not enough saving to justify the hassles that the crews have to go through to make the stuff work right, every time, and keep it all in proper operating condition. (I'd like to think that it would stay perfect, but Murphy and Finagle have resolved otherwise...)

Likewise, the drag attributable to crosswinds dwarfs that of longitudinal movement, particularly on TOFC (with high drag around the undercarriage and due to the higher profiles and longer gaps) and COFC with ribbed-sided containers. Laymen often seem to think that the only 'wind' on a train is that which comes directly from the front, and that crosswinds short of those violent enough to derail cars do nothing more to train resistance than 'make the cars sway'. One solution used in Europe was to increase tumblehome on the vehicle sides -- something that doesn't 'package' well in the world of ship containers!

Regarding the better bearings: I get the impression that you're looking at some other definition of 'better' than applies in the railroad industry. You do understand why magnetic bearings aren't used on boxcars, or even intermodal trains, don't you? Even in the 1990s, Timken was building bearings with low friction and sealed maintainability past the wear limits on the wheels -- better than that is essentially pointless. If you look at the recent research into top-of-rail lubrication, you'll note that this produces increased running efficiency higher than that which would result from 'perfect' lubrication in the bearings (i.e. no component of rolling resistance attributable to bearings) -- some proof, I think, that very little additional efficiency is to be obtained from "better" bearings of any design; there had better be a minimum 500.000-mile life without maintenance or external power on your 'better bearing' for it to be even "as good" as what current technology provides...

There are MUCH better things to be redesigned on conventional freight railcars than bearings. Start with continuous wheel profile turning (and precise pair sizing), field hard-coating of wheel treads, better brake composition and actuation mechanisms, and multiaxis damping (particularly including yaw damping, which must be proportionally greater for high rates, among other things). Then see if there's an economic justification to magic-wear-rate grinding, better 'tuning' of transitions, teaching crews how to actually line and surface transition spirals with existing equipment, etc. Make stick flange lubricators and top-of-rail systems ubiquitous... if they pay. All these things have, imho, a greater influence on train operations than aerodynamic drag. And we haven't done more than scratch the surface on how to eliminate unnecessary stops and slow orders, even one of which wipes out the whole theoretical gain from locomotive streamlining...

I have very little doubt that bean-counting railroad management would embrace locomotive streamlining if it paid. I concur that (imho) it's a little shortsighted for GM to embrace so aggressively 'unstreamlined' an approach as the SD70M-2, particularly considering what these locomotives cost, but I'm also not privy to construction economics, and have learned not to second-guess people or judge situations in a business without finding out the facts and context beforehand.

Whether we like it or not -- and in quite a few ways I don't -- railroads exist to make money, not maximize efficiencies. This is particularly hard for me, at times, because I have a love of technology, effective and elegant design, high speed, DFM, etc., as well as a certain romance for that part of railroading that runs trains fast. It's quite logical to burn more fuel to save money... if you have run your numbers correctly and are actually making money on the bottom line, and aren't Penn-Centraling your railroad somehow by deferring critical things (like maintenance) until the situation goes nonlinear. My opinion is that modern railroad management are not a collective pack of blind fools, and are, in fact, quite cognizant of fuel burn and desirous of reducing it.

As an exercise, I'd like to see a full lifecycle costing of streamlining as applied to locomotives -- fab cost, maintenance and crash-resistance implications, cooling, wake-turbulence analysis, etc., balanced by the savings attributable to the practice. (If you like, include the goodwill attributable to the better appearance... that was, after all, a principal justification for streamlining on both steam and diesel locomotives in the past!! ;-})

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Zynda » 28 Mar 2017 18:37

vsunder saar, I saw the video of BLR-Hassan. Quite a humbling experience to watch people get excited about railway connectivity, which many of us in metro cities take for granted at least in the current times. Anyways, most of the terrain looks flat with no major gradient...do you have any idea about the max speed the tracks/line is designed for?

I will repeat arshyam's question about BLR-MYS doubling. Post March 31st, would the stretch between Kaveri rivers & Srirangapatnam Station be thrown open for traffic?

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Zynda » 29 Mar 2017 22:20

Railways opts for global shopping for 200 kmph locos

NEW DELHI: The Railways will go for global shopping to acquire high speed locomotives with a Rs 500 crore project to run trains at 200 km per hour on Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Kolkata routes.

Speed is the latest matra for railways as it is going ahead with the action plan to upgrade Delhi-Kolkata and Delhi-Mumbai rail corridors enabling the track fit for 200 kmph train run.

"We will float the global tender for acquiring 10 high speed electric locomotives, which can haul trains at 200 kmph and beyond, from the market shortly," said a senior Railway Ministry official.

"The transfer of technology of the high power locomotives and its maintenance will be the responsibility of the successful bidder, besides supplying 10 locos to railways," said the official.

The Rs 500 crore project involves purchase of high speed locomotives, transfer of technology and maintenance for 13 years as per the bidding requirement.

The high power locomotives are expected to haul 22-24 coaches train at 200 kmph on Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Kolkata routes to reduce the travel time. :eek:

In order to match the loco capacity, railways has started the manufacturing of Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) coaches with speed potential of 200 kmph.

The high speed LHB coaches are about to be turned out from Rail Coach Factory at Kapurthala.

Besides Talgo coaches, which are also meant for higher speed on the existing tracks, are likely to be hauled with these high speed locomotives.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby sohamn » 29 Mar 2017 22:42

Which car do you guys think has lower drag?

a) Viper RT 1996
Image


b) Chevy Astro 2005 Minivan
Image

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby sanjaykumar » 30 Mar 2017 01:52

Probably the second.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vsunder » 30 Mar 2017 07:49

Zynda wrote:vsunder saar, I saw the video of BLR-Hassan. Quite a humbling experience to watch people get excited about railway connectivity, which many of us in metro cities take for granted at least in the current times. Anyways, most of the terrain looks flat with no major gradient...do you have any idea about the max speed the tracks/line is designed for?

I will repeat arshyam's question about BLR-MYS doubling. Post March 31st, would the stretch between Kaveri rivers & Srirangapatnam Station be thrown open for traffic?


Actually not quite, there is a very deep cut and also a tunnel that took some time to excavate on BLR-Hassan new line. One positive outcome is that there are no level crossings on this new line and this makes for better speed. The line is maybe OK for 130kmph max operations but CRS has determined an initial operational speed of 90kmph max.
Here are the tunnel videos on this line and deep cutting. This is during the speed testing and trials.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xoAE9K3QmN4

Regarding BLR-Mysore doubling. The track linking through Srirangapatna station and the two branches and bridges over the Kaveri river amounts to 1.5km. This track linking was reported as targeted to be done by 31st March. Then there are 3 rounds of tamping of the ballast once track linking is complete. Each round will take 2 days, then there is setting up electric traction poles and wiring. I am not sure of the status of wiring in Mysore yard and there was some report of the traction substations not complete. Thus by mid May I would perhaps be confident they will be ready for CRS inspection. There is a possibility it may be done earlier and the entire Bangalore-Mysore line doubled and electrified, or there is also a possibility of work slippage and we see work ending mid June. Then it depends on the schedule of the CRS. So I said earlier 5 months, but I suspect this is 3-4 months or slightly earlier before we have a commissioned Bangalore-Mysore doubled and electrified track . Once electrified many trains will save time like Shatabdi as it will no longer be necessary to switch from Diesel(on MYS-SBC section) to electric on Bangalore-Chennai section.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Singha » 30 Mar 2017 10:03

But isnt the existing abb wap7 hauling rajdhani already capable of 200kmph with 25 coaches?

Is this like buying longbow apache ignoring lch in hand

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Zynda » 30 Mar 2017 10:25

That would be WAP5. WAP7 was a passenger variant of the original WAG-9 freight locomotive. WAP7 if I recall correctly is rated for 140Kph only. Apparently, there was lot of vibration issues due to freight to pax conversion. Also a single WAP5 isn't powerful enough to haul 25 coaches at 160Kph, forget 200 Kph. IR did try having multiple units of WAP5 but had issues with excessive catenary vibrations (?) due to lot of vertical movement of electric loco's pantograph at such high speeds. So part of the problem may be track laying itself...lot of undulating features which show up at high speeds. I could be wrong on that though.

vsunder saar, thanks for answering. I wonder why IR is limiting to 130 Kph line rating when they can design some of the newer sections to higher speeds (160+) right now instead of thinking about it 30 years hence forth like they are conducting studies for Mysore-Bangalore-Chennai line among others.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vina » 30 Mar 2017 10:57

sohamn wrote:Which car do you guys think has lower drag?

Trick question .. And hence trick answer. The Viper will have a lower drag.
But which has lower drag coefficient ? So how does it square with the answer?

Perfect video posted by VSunder which shows the flow around the train.


Watch the flow in the tunnel. It is constrained by the tunnel sides and it is pushed forwards by the engine , sort of like a piston pushing out air in an open tube.. You can see the dust come out of the tunnel a fair bit before the engine comes out .

Once the engine is out the flow dramatically changes. Watch the dust. It is a great substitute for smoke in flow visualisation studies, here it is free and is real time and real world. See how it flows primarily along the sides of the train (swept up and then extends right beyond the end of the train) and separates out. The longer the train, further behind is the wake and a much weaker wake. I a car, you tend to have a wedge shaped boot and the wake is typically at the top of the boot (and a smaller wake) than if you let the wake separate out at the top of the rear glass (like in a hatch back).

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby sohamn » 30 Mar 2017 12:02

vina wrote:
sohamn wrote:Which car do you guys think has lower drag?

Trick question .. And hence trick answer. The Viper will have a lower drag.
But which has lower drag coefficient ? So how does it square with the answer?



Good thinking Vina. :idea: Aerodynamics is affected by the frontal drag and the overall drag coefficient. The frontal drag is all about how effectively an object can something slice through a fluid and the drag coefficient is all about how overall fluid movement around the body of moving objects creates resistance.

So, while the frontal drag is lower in the viper, the overall drag coefficient is significantly higher - resulting in poor aerodynamics compared to the minivan. Hence, in an locomotive mere frontal streamlining and drag reduction is not enough, at higher speeds overall drag coefficient matters even more. So, a WAG7 with WAM shell vs WAP shell will not matter much untill the entire drag coefficient is reduced.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby JayS » 30 Mar 2017 15:52

vina wrote:Watch the flow in the tunnel. It is constrained by the tunnel sides and it is pushed forwards by the engine , sort of like a piston pushing out air in an open tube.. You can see the dust come out of the tunnel a fair bit before the engine comes out .

Once the engine is out the flow dramatically changes. Watch the dust. It is a great substitute for smoke in flow visualisation studies, here it is free and is real time and real world. See how it flows primarily along the sides of the train (swept up and then extends right beyond the end of the train) and separates out. The longer the train, further behind is the wake and a much weaker wake. I a car, you tend to have a wedge shaped boot and the wake is typically at the top of the boot (and a smaller wake) than if you let the wake separate out at the top of the rear glass (like in a hatch back).


The beak-like shape of Japanese Bullet trains is dictated by this problem - high speed train entering a tunnel. High enough speed and it could create shockwaves. The shapes that those Shinkansen trains have at the front vents the entrapped air in upward direction reducing the pressure in the front.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby JayS » 30 Mar 2017 16:18

sohamn wrote:
vina wrote:Trick question .. And hence trick answer. The Viper will have a lower drag.
But which has lower drag coefficient ? So how does it square with the answer?



Good thinking Vina. :idea: Aerodynamics is affected by the frontal drag and the overall drag coefficient. The frontal drag is all about how effectively an object can something slice through a fluid and the drag coefficient is all about how overall fluid movement around the body of moving objects creates resistance.

So, while the frontal drag is lower in the viper, the overall drag coefficient is significantly higher - resulting in poor aerodynamics compared to the minivan. Hence, in an locomotive mere frontal streamlining and drag reduction is not enough, at higher speeds overall drag coefficient matters even more. So, a WAG7 with WAM shell vs WAP shell will not matter much untill the entire drag coefficient is reduced.


Frontal drag is a part of total or overall drag.

And the Viper has Higher Drag coefficient which is typically expected from Sports cars which want to generate a lot of down force. In fact you know which cars have highest drag coefficients..?? The F1 cars..!! Cd >1 in some cases. That's 3-4 times higher that what typical cars have (~0.3).

I would expect Minivan would have higher drag force and much less stability than the Viper at high speeds (say >100mph)

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Zynda » 30 Mar 2017 17:21

When I mentioned aerodynamic shaping, I was NOT referring to shaping that is done on bullet trains...more like a slight streamlining of the front.

This locomotive is called F-125, designed by Caterpillar Inc. (formerly EMD) to replace existing passenger diesel-electric locomotives in US.

Image

The locomotive is designed to have an in-service max speed of 125mph (200 Kph). Note the front facade of the locomotive...some slight aerodynamic shaping.

This is P-42 locomotive...the one being replaced by F-125 and P-42 is a GE Rail product. The P-42 has a slightly less max speed of 110mph (177 Kph) even though the routes along which it runs in US are largely restricted to 79mph (~130 Kph) operational speed.

Image

Again note the frontal shaping.

I will bet that IR will eventually adapt them locomotives to haul passenger trains. In fact, RDSO of India had put a white paper around 4-5 years ago (I will post a link later when I find it) where it mentioned the need for 6000 HP diesel-electric locomotive to haul the Shatabdi & Rajdhani Express rakes at speeds up to 150 Kph (94 mph). At those speeds, even some front streamlining would be helpful. It is perfectly possible that DLW along with GE Rail could modify the front facade (may not be an extensive redesign since it may affect crash worthiness of the underlying structural elements) slightly later on...I am basing the above on the existing track record of IR adapting all previous diesel freight loco purchase from US which have been put in to Pax hauling services as well in IR.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby JayS » 30 Mar 2017 17:41

JayS wrote:
sohamn wrote:
Good thinking Vina. :idea: Aerodynamics is affected by the frontal drag and the overall drag coefficient. The frontal drag is all about how effectively an object can something slice through a fluid and the drag coefficient is all about how overall fluid movement around the body of moving objects creates resistance.

So, while the frontal drag is lower in the viper, the overall drag coefficient is significantly higher - resulting in poor aerodynamics compared to the minivan. Hence, in an locomotive mere frontal streamlining and drag reduction is not enough, at higher speeds overall drag coefficient matters even more. So, a WAG7 with WAM shell vs WAP shell will not matter much untill the entire drag coefficient is reduced.


Frontal drag is a part of total or overall drag.

And the Viper has Higher Drag coefficient which is typically expected from Sports cars which want to generate a lot of down force. In fact you know which cars have highest drag coefficients..?? The F1 cars..!! Cd >1 in some cases. That's 3-4 times higher that what typical cars have (~0.3).

I would expect Minivan would have higher drag force and much less stability than the Viper at high speeds (say >100mph)


PS: Just checked Google for Cd values - turns out Viper has Cd = 0.45 and Minivan has Cd = 0.40. Of coarse the wiki page where this is taken from does not say what speeds. So its too little to say much about the overall aerodynamic efficiency of the cars, however I can tell you that the Viper does not have poor aerodynamics. Far from it, In fact its much more aerodynamic so to speak than the minivan. While the Viper must be creating a significant down force for Cd = 0.45. minivan would be creating far less down force for almost the same i.e. Cd = 0.4.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby prasan » 30 Mar 2017 19:49

[youtube]https://youtu.be/ZiqyJc4MRmM[/youtube]

¡nside CLW

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Singha » 30 Mar 2017 20:27

going back to diesels from electric is a meh meh though. only massa has such large diesels I dont think anyone else is using those biggies now.

another F-solah kind of lock in deal.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vina » 30 Mar 2017 20:34

JayS wrote:PS: Just checked Google for Cd values - turns out Viper has Cd = 0.45 and Minivan has Cd = 0.40. Of coarse the wiki page where this is taken from does not say what speeds.


Cd is a non dimensonalised coefficient. Total drag proportional Cd* Frontal Area * V^2 . So if Cd and V are same, the one with higher frontal area has more drag. Cd will depend on the shape and also how streamlined the flow is overall (via louvres, intakes, engine bay , etc etc)...The Viper has an open top and that doesn't help much with streamlining if the top is down.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby JayS » 30 Mar 2017 21:25

vina wrote:
JayS wrote:PS: Just checked Google for Cd values - turns out Viper has Cd = 0.45 and Minivan has Cd = 0.40. Of coarse the wiki page where this is taken from does not say what speeds.


Cd is a non dimensonalised coefficient. Total drag proportional Cd* Frontal Area * V^2 . So if Cd and V are same, the one with higher frontal area has more drag. Cd will depend on the shape and also how streamlined the flow is overall (via louvres, intakes, engine bay , etc etc)...The Viper has an open top and that doesn't help much with streamlining if the top is down.


Yes I know what Cd means. What I meant is wiki page doesn't say if these values for the two cars are at same speeds or at different speeds.

I didn't consider open top. Wouldn't be an apple to apple comparison.

Viper has higher Cd, minivan in all probability will have higher drag force under same conditions.

Everything said and done, Viper has higher Cd, but it doesn't necessarily mean its less efficient aerodynamically as compared to the minivan. Also one cannot compare aerodynamics based on absolute forces. So comparing two things based on force values unless they are quite similar, could lead to erroneous conclusions. Even though it seems logical in this case.

Sorry for the OT. No more from my side.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Dipanker » 30 Mar 2017 21:41

Let me bring the discussion back to track by reporting this derailment:

Eight coaches of Mahakaushal Express derail near Kulpahar, 52 passengers injured

Fifty-two passengers were injured, 10 of them seriously, as eight bogies of the Jabalpur-Nizamuddin Mahakaushal Express derailed early today in neighbouring Mahoba district. Railways have ordered an inquiry into the derailment which left 400 metres of track damaged. The mishap disrupted rail traffic on the route with services of 14 trains disurpted, railway officials said.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vsunder » 01 Apr 2017 00:28

Valadi-Srirangam-Trichy Jn CRS inspection went off well today. Top speed attained on new electrified double line was 121 kmph. Also Manparrai-Kalpattichattram (Trichy-Dindigul) double line and electrification inspection was carried out today and also was ok.

Here is a video of the full Bangalore-Hassan new line on the inaugural run. Enthusiastic crowds along the entire route.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3M4HMb5Tf40

The new line basically begins at 13:23 with the double tracks branching to the right being the Tumakuru-Arsikere line which is being doubled towards Arsikere and Hubli after Tumkur on a priority basis. The new Bangalore-Hassan line has no level crossings beyond this point upto Hassan. Only ROB's and RUB's.

Before Kunigal station as the videographer points out, one can see the Kunigal stud farm owned by Vijay Mallya. Protracted land negotiations with him and a host of other issues delayed this new line for about 20 years.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vsunder » 02 Apr 2017 03:58

Regarding rail fractures. A rough measure of when rail renewal is needed is provided by GMT, Gross Million Tonnes. So if the density of the rail is 52kg/meter, then GMT for that rail is 550, that is 550 million tonnes of freight, passenger traffic can pass over it at which point it becomes unsafe to use it anymore. There could be other factors, manufacturing defects, bubbles of hydrogen trapped in the steel during the steel making process called hydrogen embrittlement, can cause steel rails to fail as was the case in the Khanna, Punjab rail disaster,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khanna_rail_disaster

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrogen_embrittlement

corrosion, due to sewage effluents from open discharge toilets on trains etc. that may curb the life of the rail. For 60kg/m rails the GMT is 800. The average freight weight of an IR train is 5000 tonnes. Given the large number of trains that have been added and movement on single line tracks, rails approach their GMT limits quite fast. On the average 5000km of track/rail renewal is due every year, leave alone re-girdering of bridges and replacement of points etc. Enough downtime is also not there, as one cannot have a mega block without attendant disruption of rail traffic. Doing track renewal in a time bound manner is thus extremely important. It is a rule that a track renewal is to be completed within 2-3 years once sanctioned and it would be interesting to see if IR is lagging behind due to paucity in funds. This is not an item that attracts news, catering, food, a station makeover attracts more attention and so does the accident if track renewal and other safety is not paid attention to. In other line opening news:

Panvel-Nagothane-Roha doubling is perhaps commissioned today as there was a massive traffic block for 3 days.

http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report-t ... ck-2374519

Roha is the gateway to Konkan Railway, KR starts here. Panvel-Roha is Central Railway and was massively congested as it is in the extremely busy Mumbai, CSTM area. Trains coming from Goa and Mangalore and DEMU's coming towards Chattrapati Shivaji terminal had to proceed on a single line towards Panvel on CR creating severe bottlenecks in the Mumbai area. Hopefully this will help. Now both ends of Konkan Railway are also electrified with e-locos hauling the first train out of Mangalore. I am amazed as I have seen North British Steam engines pull trains out of Mangalore since the mid 1950's, so here we are with e-locos, it will take me some time to get used to.
Once Konkan Railway is electrified, it will help with not having to waste time at Mangalore to change the diesel to an e-loco and similarly at the Mumbai end and also with conserving diesel. Of course we will see diesels running under wires for some to come on trains using Konkan Railway and going North to Delhi or South to Trivandrum.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Sachin » 04 Apr 2017 11:45

Miscreants rob train passengers in Dharmapuri
Railway sources suspect that the sabotage was the handiwork of those who knew how the signaling system worked. The driver of the train, while moving close to Doddampatti railway station after leaving Morappur junction in Dharmapuri district, stopped it as the signal light glowed red, police sources said.

The engine driver, after waiting for about 40 minutes at the place, had called the railway staff to get clearance to move his train, when the daring mischief by the robbers to sabotage the train came to light.


Seems to be a The Great Train robbery like nefarious scheme. A signalling cables were sabotaged which made the signal to show the red aspect. This happened at Morappur RS, in Dharmapuri Dt. TN. The area is known for its forests as well as naxal presence. But don't know what prompted the driver to wait for 40 mins, because this is a very busy trunk route and very many trains use the tracks. Don't know about the terrain; but generally the stations can be contacted using VHF Walkie Talkies (which every train driver & guard have these days). The fact that a train is just not crossing a specific signal can also be detected at the "signal panel".

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Zynda » 05 Apr 2017 19:21

Change or perish: World Bank expert to Indian Railways

India continues to cross subsidise passenger services with freight revenues; it condemns India to a high carbon, high logistics, cost, and high road congestion future,” says World Bank specialist.

Martha Lawrence, senior railway specialist, leader of railways community of practice, World Bank, said Indian Railways faces three major challenges. First, it is losing market share to roads, second is capacity constraints and third is finances. To end railway woes, Lawrence proposed to turn it into an enterprise with commercial independence, like in the case of Russia and China. She advocated building of new revenue sources for funding passenger services.

Here is the text of her speech at the Railways Reform and Governance Conclave 2017 held in New Delhi.

Indian Railways is facing three challenges. Number one is that the rail service is losing the market share to roads. After decades of growth both freight and passenger services are down, despite India having the fastest economy in the world.

The second challenge is capacity. The traffic has grown much faster than the infrastructure capacity and is constrained in key corridors. This affects railways ability to offer competitive services.

The third challenge is finances. Historically, railways revenue has covered cost and contributed to a third of capital investment. But balancing the budget is getting increasingly difficult. Moreover passenger masses are huge and put a big burden on the freight whose high tariff makes railways lose competitiveness.

So Indian Railways is at crossroads. If issues are not addressed, it is becoming trapped in vicious cycle of deteriorating finances under investment capacity bottleneck and declining rail share.

I would like to highlight some of governance reforms, international experiences, which suggest putting Indian Railways instead on a virtuous cycle of growth investment and financial sustainability.

Let us look at freight services. Coal, which comprises of 40 percent of freight volume and nearly half of its revenue, is down. It’s not a temporarily blip. It’s the structural changes in the economy such as coal mines in Odisha replacing the imported coal. So this traffic is not likely to come back and the gap needs to be filled with new traffic.

The good news is India has lots of other traffic that could be carried by the rail. Our freight logistics model shows that rail carries only a fraction of traffic which in other countries would move by rail. And the railways in my country –the US – would similarly depend on coal a few years ago. But they were able to develop other lines of business which you can see in two railways in the US; they are now bigger revenue producers than coal.

This was happened because railways were free to change how they worked. They went from bureaucratic government focused service providers – the kind of guys who would expect customers to adopt their logistics system to customer friendly transport provider who adopt rail services to customer needs.

This required a big change in culture. As well as competitive prices, tailored services, targeted investments – all wrapped up in long term contracts to service guarantees. India could attract this kind of non-coal traffic, too. It’s there to be moved.

But it requires commercial management which is much easier to deliver in a company structure than through ministry. It requires that the cross subsidy from freight to passenger services be reduced. So freight can charge competitive prices. If India continues to cross subsidise, it condemns India to a high carbon high logistics cost, high road congestion future.

I don’t have enough data to talk about growth in rail passenger market, although I firmly believe it’s there. But I do have some data about why passenger services require so much subsidy.

I have heard people say that it is because Indian Railways is overstaffed, and I want to tell you that is not supported by the facts. If we look at IR staff productivity it stacks up pretty well against other passenger railways. It’s about 70 percent of the productivity of China railways and more than twice productivity of France and Germany! :)

The issue is in ticket revenues. The Indian Railways revenues are way lower than other countries. Indian Railways revenue per passenger kilometre is less than one-fifth of China where the average salary is about the same.

So what is international experience suggest to be done to address this issue. Well, given how low the rates are it does appear that there is some room to raise rates – something to consider and study. Rates could be indexed to cost and inflation.

It’s possible to enlist local support for local services. The Russian railways, for example, has put its suburban services into joint ventures with municipalities. So they share and support in the service.

China railways develops high speed infrastructure with provincial government – again getting the local government to support the investment.
In many countries, you can support loss making social services through government funded public service contract. Many, many countries do this. It’s possible to leverage passenger assets and footfall through advertising and developing station real estate. That can’t substitute for the other sources of the revenue. But it can be an excellent supplement.

On infrastructure, the key corridors in the golden quadrilateral are saturated with trains. The dedicated fright corridor being built with WB and JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) support are part of the answer to this. But much more needs to be done. The ministry of railways has developed a concept of ‘India development fund’ to raise financing from the private sector for commercially viable infrastructure. But it’s the railway fund exercise demonstrated that financing depends on funding. The cash flows from freight, passenger and government have to be sufficient for financing that allows investment in new services. So addressing the low revenues from passenger service and growing the profitable freight service are key to be able to finance the expansion in infrastructure that’s needed.

The three changes that international experience reflects to address the challenges dogging Indian railways are as follows: 1) turn the Indian railways into a state owned enterprise with financially separate passenger and freight units—acting under the mandate with sufficient independence to operate commercially. Every major railway in the world is functioning as a company. Russia, China and many others have made this change to be enable railways to be more commercial and market oriented.

And when I raise this issue, which I know is a controversy in India, I would also like to emphasize the importance of the mandate and the independence to operate commercially. Without this corporatization it is just like moving the boxes around.

Second would be to encourage market pricing and contracting for freight services. Without services tailored to specific customers the railways can’t compete with trucks and expand profitable services that need financial help.

Third would be to build the revenue sources for passenger services, so that the passenger services have the funding to support the needed investment and service improvements.

I know that this simple-sounding ideas are not easy to implement but the market is there and with all the smart people, the Indian Railways, I assure you, can figure out how to do this and put itself back on virtuous cycle of growth investment and financial sustainability.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Supratik » 05 Apr 2017 22:28

Cabinet approves setting up of Railway Development Authority. Discussions on in Railways to allow private passenger trains on in capacity that is going to be released post WDFC and EDFC commissioning.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Karthik S » 10 Apr 2017 09:24

Finally:

The railways have crossed a major hurdle in rolling out the ambitious bullet train project as the Maharashtra government has agreed to give land at the Bandra-Kurla complex (BKC).

The starting point of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad high speed corridor at BKC was a bone of contention between the railways and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) as the latter was strongly opposed to giving land to the public transporter.

The proposed bullet train will start underground from BKC and travel 21 km in a tunnel passing through the sea before emerging overground at Thane.

The MRDA had wanted to use the BKC land for the proposed International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) at BKC.

The state Urban Development Department had also asked the railways to explore alternatives near Bandra Terminus and Kurla.

However, the railways had rejected the suggestion and managed to convince the MMRDA that India's first high speed rail project should be constructed at an underground terminus at BKC, a senior Railway Ministry official said.

Since the station is planned to be built underground, the above space can be utilised for IFSC construction, the official said.

There are a total of 12 stations on the 508-km route four of which are in Maharashtra and eight in Gujarat.

A formal announcement is likely to be made by the railways and Maharashtra soon ending the uncertainities over location of the starting point of India's first bullet train project, the official said.

The total land available at BKC is about 67 acres and the project needs about 10 acre land.

Passenger area, platforms, escalators, lifts among others will be constructed underground at BKC.

Estimated to cost about Rs 97,636 crore, 81 per cent of the funding for the project will come by way of a loan from Japan. The project cost includes possible cost escalation, interest during construction and import duties.

Maharashtra and Gujarat will also share 25 per cent cost each for the project.

Currently geo-technical survey is going on to be followed by the final location survey to mark the alignment and exact spots for the pillars on which trains will run at higher speed to reduce the travelling time between Mumbai and Ahmedabad drastically.

It takes about seven hours to travel between the two cities and the bullet train aims to reduce it to about two hours.

Construction of the corridor is expected to start in 2018 and is estimated to be completed by 2023.


http://www.asianage.com/metros/mumbai/0 ... -land.html

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby vina » 10 Apr 2017 11:05

Hmm. Took a train over the weekend after a very very very long time. A few observations.

1. The chairs in the LHB coaches are bad news . Cramped and uncomfortable. They took the chairs from "deluxe" buses, and slapped it into the train coach, and that too not good quality TVS-Harita Grammer ones, but rather some low quality ones slapped up together in Punjab or Delhi someplace and called "Sutlej"
2. The old ICF Coaches with the broad wide and comfortable a/c chair car seats were far far better. Those were seats custom designed for railcars and not bus seats slapped into a train coach.
3. The Railways have done some ugly compromise here. If a "plus" size person is sitting next to you or if you are a tall and broad shouldered person yourself, you are going to be very very uncomfortable. Book yourself on Lalbag / trains running ICF coaches , instead of this LHB stuff
4. The catered food on the Shatabdi was garbage. The rice was uncooked, the chapati half baked and frankly rubbish. Next time, I will fly or drive if it is a day trip and not take the Shatabdi. Both are faster and more comfortable and

That said,the City railway station was a revelation . I really now believe Suresh Prabhu . This is the first time ever I remember, the City railway station NOT smelling. Everything was well swept and scrubbed, little or no rubbish lying around. No water (or worse) flowing around and no s*it on the tracks. Yes. Even Madras Central was clean (something I thought I would never see in my lifetime as a kid) and well kept and better organised. The usually stinky toilets at the corner near platform 2 seemed better maintained (I didn't use them), with it being a paid facility and well lit etc, without the smell as you walked to board the train. All in all, pretty good as far as housekeeping and maintenance went. Even the trains were cleaned with being by a mountain of rubbish from the previous journey greeting you as you stepped in to the coach.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby chandrasekaran » 10 Apr 2017 11:38

Did you try the google WiFi @ Central ?

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby hnair » 10 Apr 2017 11:53

vina wrote:1. The chairs in the LHB coaches are bad news . Cramped and uncomfortable. They took the chairs from "deluxe" buses, and slapped it into the train coach, and that too not good quality TVS-Harita Grammer ones, but rather some low quality ones slapped up together in Punjab or Delhi someplace and called "Sutlej"
2. The old ICF Coaches with the broad wide and comfortable a/c chair car seats were far far better. Those were seats custom designed for railcars and not bus seats slapped into a train coach.


Thank yoU! I was asked to not :(( by a friend, when I pointed out that I dislike these new LHB ones. Rexin-clad Deluxe-bus-chair from the 1980s was the exact term I too used! Because that was what it was. One wonders why they did that, instead of the laz-boy grade awesome ones of ICF?

But the rail-noise of a LHB coach is markedly lesser than an ICF

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Zynda » 10 Apr 2017 12:40

The ride quality and interior noise levels of LHB coaches are much better. I was satisfied with seat quality as well as leg spacing of LHB Shatabdi. My only issue with BLR-MAS Shatabdi is travel time. It could be sped up to cover with in 4 hours instead of the present 5. Anyways the train coming towards BLR from Chennai spends an inordinate amount of time (20 mins+) at BLR Cantt waiting for probably track+platform clearance at BLR City Station. Can't comment on food quality...I only selectively as most of the items on menu is too spicy for me to handle. What's usually there to complain about bread & butter LOL.

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Re: Indian Railways Thread (Dec 2015)

Postby Prasad » 10 Apr 2017 22:37

Shatabdi might be bad. But trying sitting in the Lalbagh seats for 6 hours if you're 6'. You'll knees will curse you for the next 9 janmams. And wifi at central is blazing fast.


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