Chennai: Bharat Heavy Electricals has drawn up plans for getting into the manufacture of advanced signalling equipment and high horse-power (HP) locomotives.
BHEL recently received a Rs 1,000 crore order from the Indian Railways for the supply of 150 locomotives.
Towards this end, BHEL has signed two Memoranda of Understanding with overseas companies, one for modern signalling equipment and the other for production of high HP locomotives.
Company officials said signalling equipment will become important in the future, both to increase the throughput of trains on a track and increased safety and reliability. Under the present signalling system, the train will have to leave the track, at least partially, so that the next train is given the green light to move on to the track. Modern systems have sensors that can tell when the last bogie of the train has left and wave in the next train.
BHEL is also developing advanced traction motors for the existing engines (4,000 HP to 6,000 HP), so that the locomotives have a higher starting torque capacity.
The Indian Railways has recently placed a trial order of 30 such motors with BHEL, for which prototypes have been supplied. The project shall be completed by November 2009 said Railway sources.