Collaboration with ISRO to Install GPS in Trains, Indian Railways Goes ‘Hi-Tech’

NEW DELHI: The government plans to install GPS devices on 2700 electric locomotives by December 2018 in order to provide real-time train information.
“Railway Ministry in collaboration with Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is implementing Real-Time Train Information System (RTIS) which involves tracking of the train by placing GPS/GAGAN (GPS Aided Geo Augmented Navigation System) based devices on locomotives,” said Rajen Gohain, Minister of State for Railways.
He also mentioned that a reliable and high-level accuracy of about 99.3% of real-time reporting of arrival and departure timing updates have been observed, which is good enough to meet RTIS requirements. Real-time GPS information is an excellent tool for the purpose of adhering to a tight schedule and avoiding delays. The ISRO-made GPS devices will ensure safety during dangerous weather conditions like the foggy winters.
Northern Railway Chief Public Relations Officer (CPRO) Nitin Chowdhary has confirmed that 2700 GPS devices have been ordered, which would be installed in trains for better navigation, and to handle fog seamlessly. Trials for this system have already been conducted on the New-Delhi-Guwahati, and New-Delhi-Mumbai Rajdhani trains on six electric locomotives. Nitin Chowdhary further added that the availability of these devices, and the accurate maps of the level crossings, tracks and stations will help the engine driver to put up speed and cover the distance in shorter time, besides adding an extra layer of security. In all over North India, more than 400 trains were delayed on 31st December, and around 500 trains have been cancelled due to fog.
The device will use the coordinates of Global Positioning System and inform the driver about the location of the next station, any incoming obstacle or signal in real time. In addition, the digital display board and sensors which will immensely help the engine driver to handle any situation, whether it is fog or any other circumstances. This new GPS based system will finally replace the existing national train enquiry system (NTES), in which the train controller manually updates the train’s position.

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