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“Introduction of High Speed corridors on IR Impact and challenges before Civil Engineers” : 

“Introduction of High Speed corridors on IR Impact and challenges before Civil Engineers” by Tribhuvan Gupta Chief Engineer/Const./Central Northern Railway & Vineet Kumar Srivastava Dy. Chief Engineer/Const./D-I Northern Railway

Definition of High speed : 

Definition of High speed As per UIC : As regards infrastructure, - A line is described as a “high speed line” when it is a new one designed to enable train operation at speeds above 250 kmph throughout the whole journey, or at least over a significant part of the journey. In case of upgraded conventional lines, speeds of 200-220 kmph can be considered high speed if it results in substantial reduction in journey time.

Milestone in High Speed (Kmph): 

Milestone in High Speed (Kmph) 1964 JNR 220.0 (max.) 1988 DB 407.0 (test run) 1990 SNCF 515.3 (test run) 1997 JNR 285.0 (max.) 1998 SNCF 300.0 (max.) 1999 DB 330.0 (max.) 1999 JNR (Maglev) 552.0 (test run) 2000 New York-Boston line 240.0 (comm.)


Some High Speed Trains in the world

Passenger Train Speeds in India: 

Passenger Train Speeds in India

Issues in High Speed Trains: 

Issues in High Speed Trains Identification of corridors on IR up to 2020 Techno-economic feasibility studies Competition from cheap air travel & expressways Safety, reliability and comfort Expected tariff structure Energy and environmental responsibility Involvement of imported technology & technology transfer

Up gradation of existing lines: 

Up gradation of existing lines Loss of line capacity by about 3 paths for each high speed train Intermittent speed restrictions leading to lack of long stretches for high speed High energy consumption; energy ∞ (speed)3 Environmental issues : noise, objections, law suits

Construction of new dedicated high speed lines: 

Construction of new dedicated high speed lines Curves to be flat Grade separation at crossings Dedicated rolling stock Advanced signaling safety devices High cost & Low return

Rolling stock : 

Rolling stock The rolling stock should be compatible with high speed and should provide safe and comfortable travel. Locomotive WAP-5(cleared for max speed 160 Kmph) Coaches LHB (cleared for max speed of 160 Kmph) (28 No. available) (Only nominated rakes to be permitted for high speed)

Track structure as per RDSO: 

Track structure as per RDSO Rails : 52 Kg (90 UTS) Sleepers : PSC (60 Kg) Ballast Cushion : 250 mm (minimum) Sleeper Density : 1540 nos/km (minimum)

Track maintenance: 

Track maintenance Mobile maintenance unit (MMU) should be operational. Each division to have dedicated fleet of track machines. Fixed maintenance corridor blocks to be available. No push trolley/motor trolley inspection in face of the high speed train. On foot inspections schedule to be laid down. Real time communication of engineering staff with station masters, drivers and guards for imposing engineering speed restrictions, availing engineering blocks, etc


Contd…. Fuel and other imprests for petty repairs of small track machines and T&P items to be liberally upgraded Adequate material imprest and separate vehicle for PWIs Non-core P-way works like de-weeding, cess repairs, etc. to be out sourced through P-way zones. Adequate leave reserve of PWIs to be maintained. No vacancy to be left in P.way and other safety categories. IRSE Officers to be posted with tenure of 4 to 5 years (AEN & DEN).

Track monitoring: 

Track monitoring Track monitoring by machines. The frequency of track recording by TRC shall be once in two months as existing. OMS recording to be conducted at 15 days.

Permissible track tolerances: 

Permissible track tolerances Track geometry standards, as per RDSO report (C&M Vol. 1), are proposed to be adopted for 150 kmph train, as an interim measure on NDLS-AGC section. One round of through gauging on all the sleepers. No backlog of deep screening. DTM should be introduced. Gangs to be headed by PWI grade III. Zero missing fittings.

Detection mechanism of discontinuity in rails : 

Detection mechanism of discontinuity in rails To provide walkie-talkie sets to key men, patrolmen, PWMs & PWIs and Officers. VHF sets to have channels of S&T and operating Branches also. Adequacy of existing system of USFD to be reassessed. USFD organisation to be modified to have sub-divisional control.

Increased emphasis on passenger comfort: 

Increased emphasis on passenger comfort The limits of TGI values to be enhanced from existing 80 to 85 to ensure better maintenance of track. No fish plated joints to be allowed except under suitable speed restrictions.

Review of maximum permissible cant, cant deficiency, cant gradient etc. on curves.: 

Review of maximum permissible cant, cant deficiency, cant gradient etc. on curves. Board have tentatively permitted cant deficiency (Cd) of 125 mm against 100 mm permitted on curves upto 20. Final clearance after trials. The existing limits for rate of change of cant i.e. 55 mm per second for design of transition length for a curve will be applicable.

The capability of aged bridges: 

The capability of aged bridges To withstand the increased dynamic augment at high speeds The tendency of resonance was noted on multiple spans of 18.3 m and above while doing trial at speed higher than 160 kmph with WDM4 loco. It needs to be observed during trial. All bridges should be ballasted deck type with LWR on them.

Suitability of steel channel sleepers : 

Suitability of steel channel sleepers Steel channel sleepers to be permitted as an interim measure. No speed restrictions are considered necessary on steel channel sleepers. Observe the behaviour of these sleepers at least for one year on a monthly basis. Sub-structure of bridges with steel channel sleepers to be kept under watch. FRP sleeper\ imported wooden sleepers.

Level Crossings: 

Level Crossings All Level Crossings enroute, to be manned, interlocked and provided with telephone. All level crossings to be grade separated in a time bound manner. Construction of ROBs to be on BOT basis.

Need of fencing along the track: 

Need of fencing along the track Demarcation of Railway Boundary with verified land plans is must for construction of fencing. Fencing to be provided selectively depending on the possibility of trespassing of stray cattle etc. Height of fencing should be 2 m and the bottom 0.3 m to be left clear to allow passage to accumulate water etc. Out sourcing of security patrolling to prevent tress passing and damage to fencing

Criteria for rolling stock : 

Criteria for rolling stock Board/RDSO to lay down the revised criteria for Rolling stock with due consideration for passenger comfort and safety against derailment,consider tilting body coaches and steerable bogies as available abroad. Day light maintenance of R.S. to be laid down.

Study of yard lay out: 

Study of yard lay out No high speed if the run through lines is a platform line. Speed restrictions to be imposed in such yards Separate through lines to be provided in a planned manner. Towns to have bye pass lines which will help to have separate line in future.


Signalling Digital speed indicator showing max permissible speed, actual speed & speed to be maintained for punctual running Provision of double distant wherever not provided Automatic warning to Driver of signal aspect

C & M – I Report: 

C & M – I Report Track parameters studied – Unevenness, Alignment, Gauge, X- level and twist Max acceleration in cab and coach floor – 0.3g and occasional peak of 0.35g accepted, if no resonant tendency is shown Ride Index (Loco) – 3.75 to 4.0 satisfactory (3.75 is to be preferred) Ride Index (Coach) – 3.25 to 3.50 satisfactory (3.25 is to be preferred)

Planning on Indian Railways NDLS-AGC Section ( targeted for March 2005): 

Planning on Indian Railways NDLS-AGC Section ( targeted for March 2005) NDLS – TKD 18 Km speed of 120 kmph (existing) TKD-AGC 175 Km speed of 150 kmph Total 193 Km (existing 130 kmph) NR NDLS-PWL 57 Km NCR PWL-AGC 136 Km Total 193 Km

Stations on NR (150 kmph): 

Stations on NR (150 kmph) Junction Cabin ( Tughlakabad) Faridabad Faridabad New Town Ballabgarh Asaoti Palwal

Typical works for high speed by upgradation of conventional track being done by NR: 

Typical works for high speed by upgradation of conventional track being done by NR Removal of wooden sleepers Provision of thick web switches in facing direction All turnouts to be fan shaped layout. Replacement of 72 UTS rails with 90 UTS rails. Need based CTR & patch RR to remove small stretches of 52 kg rails between 60 kg. turnouts. Fencing of vulnerable locations.


Contd. AT welds to be joggled & provided with wooden block. Removal of IMR defects and kinky welds. Deep screening and destressing. Tamping in design mode. Panel interlocking of stations.

Observations during Foot plate inspection of NDLS-PWL section on 05.02.05: 

Observations during Foot plate inspection of NDLS-PWL section on 05.02.05 AEN was having VHF set with facility of communication with Engineering and operating staff. Trespassing has reduced but fencing is not fully effective. Need for Exclusive AEN & his team for up gradation of Track Separate high speed corridor may be better option as up- gradation interferes in the smooth traffic flow on the already saturated trunk route.


RUNNING OF 150 KMPH HIGH SPEED TRAIN ON NEW DELHI – AGRA SECTION.   CCRS vide his letter dt.21-11-03 had raised several issues pertaining to various departments.   Civil Engg - 35 S&T - 14 Electrical } Locos } - 10 Electric traction - 1   Total - 60

Summary of important items Civil Engineering: 

Summary of important items Civil Engineering







Track : 


contd…. : 







                                                       ICE 1 the first german high speed train


                                                     Swedish tilting train X2000


                                                    Japanese maglev train


                                                     Acela, the american tilting train


Abbreviations JNR-Japanese National Railway DBAG-Deutsche Bahn Auswirkungen SNCF-Societe Nationale des Chemins de fer Francais ICE-Intercity Express ACELA- Excellence &Acceleration TGV-Train a Grand Vitesse MAGLEV – Magnetic Levitation C&M – Civil & Mechanical

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