Indian Railways is set to acquire modern electrical multiple units (EMUs) with a maximum operating speed of 130 kmph to 150 kmph.
The EMUs will be used for running premium Shatabdi/Rajdhani trains, without any additional expenditure on existing track and signalling infrastructure.
“Indian Railways existing tracks on Rajdhani route are fit for running trains up to a speed of 150 kmph, but average speeds of Rajdhani/Shatabdi trains is less than 90 kmph due to large number of speed restrictions and poor acceleration and deceleration characteristics of existing loco-hauled trains,” Indian Railways Ministry said in a press release.
The proposed EMUs, which would consist of 21 cars (coaches), would consume 30 per cent less energy and massively reduce pollution compared to conventional loco-hauled trains with diesel power cars.
Citing the benefits of the modern EMUs, the ministry said: “It will increase the passenger carrying capacity by 25-30 per cent for the same length of a train and will also reduce the run time between Howrah to New Delhi by 2.5 to 3.0 hours.
The EMU trains are equipped with the three phase modern IGBT technology and require very less maintenance.
However, the per passenger cost of train sets is marginally higher at approximately Rs. 200 crore per train set of 21 cars, compared to conventional loco hauled trains for speeds up to 130 kmph to 150 kmph, ministry adds.
The Railway Ministry did not make it clear from where the EMUs will be acquired.