Chennai: At first glance, it could be mistaken for a set out of a science fiction movie. On closer look, it pans out to be the state-of-the-art operational control center (OCC) of the city’s metro rail network.
The technology that the Chennai metro rail limited (CMRL) has sourced, mostly from abroad, to keep track of the 45 km- long metro rail network appears first rate. So high tech is the system that the loco pilots would be mere overseers of the operation of the four-coach trains that passengers will be boarding soon when the network begins operations.
The entire train and network would be controlled from OCC, the nerve center of the metro rail network, which would function from CMRL’s sprawling administrative building at Koyambedu.
“Everything in the train will be pre-set. The train speed, routing, signal, halting and even manoeuvring of the train will be controlled from Koyambedu,” a senior CMRL officer said. Also, real time CCTV footages obtained from the stations and on-board cameras would be monitored by experts at the OCC.
The loco pilot will merely control the automatic slide doors of the train and attend to any distress call made by travelers from the phone aboard the metro coaches to the one in the cabin, the officer said.
In their official Facebook page, CMRL officials claimed that voice communication between the station controller and train operator through OCC would ensure perfect coordination and a high degree of safety and punctual operation of trains.
Another CMRL expert on the technical side, who confirmed that the testing of signals from OCC to stations and tracks is underway, said that any train in the 45-km network could be brought to a halt or its speed altered under any circumstances from the OCC, that monitors every movement on board and on track.
Unlike in conventional railway stations, even a minor security threat at any metro station in the network could be addressed as facilities have been created to monitor CCTV footages of all stations on a real time basis.
Location: Tamil Nadu