Indian Railways Current Affairs - 2019

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Tejas Express: New Premier Train between Mumbai and Goa

Indian Railways is expected to launch a new 20 coach premier train called the Tejas Express connecting Mumbai and Goa in June. The Tejas service aims to provide comfort to passengers in the inter-city journeys. Once the Mumbai-Goa run becomes operational, the Railways is likely to extend the Tejas service in Delhi-Chandigarh route. The Tejas service was promised in the Union Railway Budget 2016-17.

Salient features

The Tejas Express will be the first train of Indian Railways to have automatic doors and secured gangways for all coaches. At present automatic doors are only operational in metro trains in the country.

The coaches of Tejas Express would have integrated braille displays, digital destination boards, and electronic passenger reservation charts.

The fare of the Tejas Express would be fixed similar to that of Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains.

The Tejas Express will have fire and smoke detection and suppression systems as well as improved aesthetics. The other facilities include tea and coffee vending machines, magazines and snack tables. In addition, passengers can enjoy the taste of choicest cuisine curated by celebrity chefs.

All the coaches will have water level indicators in the bio-vacuum toilets. Individual LCD screens have been made available for all the passengers for entertainment purpose and for disseminating passenger related information and safety instructions.

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Indian Railways to Track Wagons and Coaches with RFID tags

Leveraging information technology in a big way, the Indian Railways is set to make use of the radio-frequency identification tags (RFID) for tracking of wagons, coaches and locomotives to ensure the effective and transparent functioning of the system. For this purpose, the RFID tags have been designed by the Centre for Railway Information System (CRIS) at an estimated cost of Rs 1000 per tag. For the first phase of implementation of this project, the Railways have sanctioned a sum of Rs 57 crore.

The trackside readers that will be installed at stations and other key points would read the RFID tag fitted in the rolling stocks and would transmit the wagon identity over a network to a central computer.

From here afterwards, all new wagons coming out of manufacturing units would be equipped with RFID tags as a part of the standard practice. Indian railways have about 2.25 lakh wagons, 50,000 coaches and 9,000 locomotives in its possession. Earlier, the Railways used RFID tags on Vishakhapatnam-Talcher-Paradeep section as a pilot project.

Significance

RFID tags will help the railways in knowing the exact location of wagons, locomotives and coaches. Such data at present is manually maintained and hence are prone to errors. By the use of RFID tags, the railways plans to address the issue of shortage of wagons, locomotives and coaches in a more transparent and expeditious manner. As the RFID tags have a lifespan of 25 years, RFID tags can be removed and reused. RFID tags will be of significant use especially in freight maintenance management, locomotive management and coach maintenance management.

RFID tags

The RFID uses electromagnetic fields to automatically identify and track tags attached to objects. The RFID tags contain electronically stored information. Unlike a bar code, the tag need not be within the line of sight (LoS) of the reader, so it can be easily embedded in the tracked object. Hence, RFID is a powerful enabling technology that is being applied in an astonishing range of applications ranging from supply chain management and product inventory control to identity authentication and access control.

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