Siemens division bags order for Mumbai Suburban Railways

Siemens today announced the signing of a major order of Rs 4,830 million with the Ministry of Railways for the supply of complete electrical equipment including the traction package for Mumbai suburban trains. This comes in the wake of the Railways'' drive to upgrade its train services and ease the congestion on Mumbai''s suburban rail network, thereby providing greater relief to commuters.

After a competitive bidding process that involved four parties, Siemens''s TS division won the mega order to be executed over a period of 36 months. The system will be supplied to Integral Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai, which will build the complete trains for operation on both of Mumbai''s suburban arterial networks, the Central and Western Railway.

This order involves development, engineering, manufacturing, supply and supervision of erection and commissioning of complete energy-saving electrical system on trains. The scope includes supply of pantograph, current transformers (CTS), potential transformers (PTS), vacuum circuit breakers, traction transformers, traction converters, motors, microprocessor-based controls and other auxiliary equipment including passenger information systems.

This equipment has state-of-the-art Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor (IGBT)-based three-phase technology with microprocessor-based controls, whereas, the entire system is based on Siemens''s SIBASTM controls with self-diagnostic features. The system supplied will be suitable for operation on dual voltages — both the 1,500-V direct current (DC) system, which is currently in use, and the 25,000-V 50-cycles system, which will replace it in the future.

Built on proprietary know-how and designs of field-proven technology of Siemens AG, these systems will be adapted to suit local environmental and climatic conditions and will have a high level of local value-added content, to be largely procured or locally manufactured. Offering multiple benefits, the system will not only reduce energy consumption by up to 30 per cent, but will also decrease the overall maintenance cost resulting in a considerable saving for the Railways. Passenger comfort is considerably enhanced due to smooth acceleration and braking without jerks.

Says J Schubert, managing director, Siemens: "Over the past two years, the Indian government has taken some initiatives to improve the transportation infrastructure, particularly roads and highways. It is encouraging to see that the government is now also increasing thrust on the rail transportation sector, which is in urgent need of modernisation, specially to ease the congestion, provide greater safety and enhance comfort for passengers. This order is a strategic breakthrough for our transportation business in India, especially the traction segment which is a focus area."