New commuter trains for Mumbai
With over 12 million inhabitants, Mumbai is the largest city in India, and by including its suburbs it is actually one of the world's largest metropolises at more than 18 million inhabitants. With a population of this size comes a huge demand for personal mobility, which is why Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation (MRVC) will put a further 72 trains into operation from 2014 – generating a large follow-up order for HUBER+SUHNER.
Mumbai is India's financial capital and commercial centre. For an ever increasing population however, the city’s transport infrastructure is becoming increasingly inadequate. Constant traffic congestion as well as regularly overcrowded trains are the consequence. For these reasons the State Government, Indian Railways and the MMRDA (Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority) started the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP), to find a long-term solution to the city's transport issues.
Step load of 80 kg required
MRVC was chosen to be responsible for the execution of the railway projects of MUTP. The first phase of the project started in 2007 with a set of new commuter trains on the Mumbai railway network, and since then, inter-vehicle jumper cables from HUBER+SUHNER have been used in the project. As these jumper cables are often spontaneously used as climbing aids to board the train, MRVC stipulated that the cables must withstand a load of at least 80 kg. HUBER+SUHNER was able to meet this requirement through a unique cable design with integrated strain relief that can carry the weight of a person. In addition, the company also delivered various RADOX Railway cables for the commuter trains.
CHF multi-million project
The patented inter-vehicle jumper systems and the RADOX cables have proven themselves effective in the meantime, thus helping to bolster HUBER+SUHNER's reputation with both Indian Railways and their Research Design & Standard Organization, RDSO, which issues the final technical approvals for railway projects and products - a clear advantage when it came to awarding the contracts for the latest generation of MRVC trains. HUBER+SUHNER again fulfilled the conditions and is supplying customized inter-vehicle jumper cables with coupler plates for all 72 trains to Bombardier, who is responsible for the electrical installations. This translates to over 100 jumper cables per train and is supplemented by various RADOX Railway cables for wiring the cars. All told, HUBER+SUHNER connections worth several millions CHF are being installed in Mumbai's new commuter trains. The materials for the prototypes were delivered in the first quarter of 2013. Series production deliveries will start in March 2014 and will continue until 2015. The first of the new trains on Mumbai's regional network will enter operation in the middle of 2014.
High standards and rigorous testing
To be awarded the contract, HUBER+SUHNER's connections once again had to meet numerous customer-specific conditions. The load-bearing capacity for the inter-vehicle jumper cables was increased from 80 to 85 kg, and the cables had to pass various tests, especially with regard to service life. These included extensive load-bearing capacity, bending and torsion tests, as well as 20 million vibration cycles. The cables also had to meet updated requirements with respect to voltage and reduced space.
Local engineering support
The solutions from HUBER+SUHNER convinced Bombardier and the RDSO, as did local production and engineering support. With the inter-vehicle jumper systems being produced in the state of the art facility of HUBER+SUHNER India in Gurgaon and with the rich experience of the first MRVC and similar projects, the local engineers are able to provide immediate support during the installation of the systems in the trains at the ICF (Integral Coach Factory) assembly plant in Chennai, in the south west of India. After all, HUBER+SUHNER not only offers products tailored to customer needs, but also local service, true to the motto of providing everything from a single source.
MRVC and Indian Railways
The Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation MRVC is a joint venture between the state-owned Indian Railways company and the Government of the Province of Maharashtra, to which Mumbai belongs. MRVC is responsible to execute the railway projects in the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP). The MRVC trains for the second phase of MUTP will be manufactured at Indian Railways' Integral Coach Factory (ICF). Bombardier was awarded the contract for the electrical installations including propulsion systems. The Research Design & Standard Organization, RDSO, which is responsible for standards and approvals in Indian railway projects and the products used for them, is also owned by Indian Railways.