New Delhi, Metro Rail News: With the successful trials of “Train 18” the first engine-less train for long-distance travel, Piyush Goyal-led Railway Ministry has asked integral coach factory (ICF), Chennai to expedite manufacturing of more such train sets.
As per the circular issued by the Railway Board to ICF, the coach factory has to now manufacture more Train 18 sets in the current production year. Prior to this, ICF had the mandate to manufacture just one more Train 18 rake by March 2019. according to the new circular, in a recent meeting of the Railway Board, led by Railway Minister Shri Piyush Goyal it was decided that “necessary action should be taken” for manufacturing four more Train 18 rakes in the current year.
Talking about the Railway Board’s direction, ICF GM Sudhanshu Mani told: “ICF will try to make two more (Train 18 sets) in this financial year and up to 8 in the next financial year depending upon the allotment from Railway Board.” That takes the total number of Train 18 sets slated for production to 10.
Indian Railway planning, Train 18 is an all air-conditioned chair car that was envisioned to replace Shatabdi Express trains. The first prototype was rolled out by ICF, Chennai in end-October and since then the train has been undergoing extensive speed trials by RDSO. Recently, Train 18 became the fastest Indian Railways train, hitting speeds of over 180 kmph during its trials on a section of the Delhi-Mumbai Rajdhani route. It surpassed the record of Gatimaan Express which operates at 160
Train 18 was Manufactured under the ‘Make in India’ initiative, It is a self-propelled train set with all its equipment underslung. The semi-high speed train makes use of regenerative braking, hence saving energy. With faster acceleration and deceleration and lesser turnaround time, Train 18 will ensure faster travel and more efficient use of rolling stock. According to Sudhanshu Mani, Train 18 has been manufactured at Rs 100 crore, but the cost will come down as more rakes are made and economies of scale kick in.