smart coach

Indian Railways has just got its first ‘SMART’ coach including Artificial Intelligence (AI) -enabled CCTV cameras. The SMART coach, built by Modern Coach Factory, Raebareli, has several new features that will go a long way in enhancing the safety and security of train journeys and enhancing passenger comfort, said Indian Railways in a statement.

Indian railways will soon roll out 100 more such coaches.

The new smart coach will be equipped with black boxes and coach information and diagnostics systems. The black boxes will have a powerful multi-dimensional communication interface to provide information on coach condition, queries related to passenger information on a real-time basis.


CCTV system with AI capability will improve the security standards of the train and also help in keeping a check on the behaviour of the railway staff. The footage would help track untoward incidents.

The coaches will also have GPS-based passenger announcement and passenger information system and the digital destination board that will keep passengers informed about the current location of the train, expected time of arrival at the next station and the speed of the train.

The wheel of the smart coaches will have “vibration-based self-power harvesting sensor”, which will know in advance if the tracks they are about to run on are weak or not. The sensors are based upon energy harvester which means they will be charged by the jerks that are already present in the train.

smart coach wheel

Wheels of Smart coach (Image – FInancialExpress.com)

Equipped with modern sensors and centralized computer to monitor the status of all sensors through a single window, this coach is on LHB platform, a statement from the Rail Ministry said.

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LHB (Linke Hofmann Busch) coaches are the passenger coaches of Indian Railways that have been developed by Linke-Hofmann-Busch, a German firm now known as Alstom LHB GmbH after the takeover by Alstom and mostly produced by Rail Coach Factory in Kapurthala, India.

The Central Processing Unit, known as ‘PICCU’ (Passenger Information and Coach Computing Unit), an industrial grade computer has been provided with GSM network and will primarily monitor the important area of coach maintenance and passenger interface.

The passenger information system will inform the passengers about the current location of the train and the next station and also expected time of arrival at the next station. This system can also show the speed of the train, the statement said.

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CCTV with artificial intelligence capability will enhance the security of the passengers and also monitor of the behaviour and activities of on Board railway staff.

“The footage will also help in the investigation into any untoward incident during the journey and identifying the culprits and indirect intervention from the remote control centre,” the Ministry said.

The coach is also provided with the emergency talkback system for communication between the passengers (especially woman and child) and the guard of the train so that necessary assistance can be provided.

The SMART coach will also have a Wi-fi hotspot information system.

An additional cost of all systems/all equipment will be approximately Rs 12-14 lakhs which can be recovered in a year or so, the ministry said.

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“As part of the pilot project. Railways will soon launch 100 more smart coaches to gain experience and validate,” Ashwani Lohani, Chairman of Railway Board who inspected the first SMART coach on Tuesday, said.

News Sourced from Financial Express

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