Robotics

Indian Trains Now has ‘USTAAD’, An AI-Powered Robot to Ensure Safety

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To check technical faults and ensure the safety of trains in India, a robot will now replace humans as Central Railways has developed an in-house robot named ‘USTAAD’ (abbreviation of ‘Undergear Surveillance Through Artificial Intelligence Assisted Droid’), which will now check for safety in under gear parts of train coaches.

The new Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered robot will click photos and record videos of the train, under the gears and then transmits them over WiFi to engineers for maintenance and repair, thus reducing chances of human error while examining undergear equipment on Indian Railways trains.

Developed by Mechanical Branch of the Nagpur Division of Central Railways, the new robot USTAAD can watch and examine areas which cannot be seen and approached by humans usually, due to the narrow spaces between under-gear parts.

Some of the very proficient features and practical capabilities of USTAAD are as follows:

HD camera:

For the constructive and appropriate examination of train’s coaches or wagon’s parts, USTAAD has been facilitated with HD (high-definition) camera. This HD camera is able to move 320 degrees on X-axis and 130 degrees on Y axis so that the maximum portion of under gear gets covered. The camera captures video as well as still photographs of the under gear parts of the coaches in real time and then, can transfer them over Wi-Fi. The engineer can study these videos on the big screen and can record the same. The HD camera of USTAAD can be rotated in any direction as per commands given by the engineer. The camera can also zoom in or zoom out on the spot, during safety inspection.

USTAAD Robot

USTAAD, The AI-powered Robot (Image – Financialexpress.com)

LED flood lights:

USTAAD is also equipped with LED (light-emitting diode) flood lights and is able to capture the videos in low light conditions as well as in dark mode. With the help of the robot’s technical power, the chances of any mistake overlooked by the human eye can be eliminated, which, in turn, reduces the chances of human error. With the help of USTAAD, engineers can easily analyse and examine areas which are difficult to see and impossible to approach manually. Cramped and narrow spaces, between or under the gear parts, can be easily captured by the robot.

Sound detection

The robot can also tap the sound of flat tyre, during placement of the rake on the Pit Line. This is particularly important for prior detection of flat tyre, in order to keep a check on the train’s swift journey.

Indian trains, which are second largest rail network of world, are known as the cheapest mode of transportation which millions of people prefer to travel in rather then other transport services. However, some times this busiest rail network comes to standstill due to accidents and mishaps.

By use of USTAAD robot, the chances of a mistake and any deficiency overlooked by the human eye can be eliminated.

It may also be recalled that in August this year, Indian Railways has also got its first ‘SMART’ coach including AI-enabled CCTV cameras. The ‘SMART’ coach, built by Modern Coach Factory, Raebareli, are equipped with black boxes and coach information and diagnostics systems.

Source – Financial Express

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Suman Chaudhary
An engineer by education and writer by profession, Suman keeps tab on startup ecosystem of India and leads the research team of IndiaWeb2 for covering funding deals, merger & acquisition and market reports.

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