The maiden smart coach for Indian Railway was unveiled at the Modern Coach Factory in Rae Bareli on September 25, 2018 as part of launching 100 such trains in a pilot project to improve the safety and security of commuters, and to boost efficiency.
- These are ‘Make in India’ smart coaches.
- Named ‘Smart Trains’, the coaches equipped with sensors that can detect defects on bearings, wheels, and the railway track, giving constant inputs to those in the control room to avoid accidents, carry out maintenance, and to improve efficiency of operations.
Features of Smart Coach
- Black box: The black box is being introduced for the first time by Indian Railways. It has a powerful multi-dimensional communication interface to provide information on passengers and coach condition on real-time basis. The black box will act as a coach control unit with communication interfaces for passenger announcements, GPS-based announcement triggers, emergency intercom for commuters, digital destination boards, train reservation display modules, and CCTVs with remote monitoring.
- Artificial intelligence (AI)-powered CCTVs: It will help those in the control room to keep a tab on untoward incidents and on the behaviour of on-board staff. Commuters will also be able to communicate with Railways officials.
- Internet of things-based system: For wheel, coach and track monitoring, Railways have come up with Internet of things-based system. Its vibrating-energy-based sensors will monitor the wheels, bearing and hard spots on the track, and will provide data through GPS/GPRS to the remote server for diagnosis and remedial measures. With modern infotainment system to locate the train in real time.
- PICCU: The Passenger Information and Coach Computing Unit (PICCU) is an industrial grade computer that will monitor the coach maintenance and passenger interface.
- CCTV recording:Six cameras installed in the coach will provide live recording. The footage can be accessed from the control room, which will be advantageous for law enforcers.
- Talk-back system: In Smart Trains an emergency talk-back system will enable communication between passengers and the guard during a crisis.
- Wi-Fi hotspot: It will be quipped with a Wi-Fi hotspot information systemwhich is an innovative feature.
- Water-level indicator technology: To know whether the water in the coach is sufficient and when it needs to be filled. When the water level falls below half the coach capacity, an SMS will be sent to the next watering station.