The Chenani-Nashri tunnel on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway, which Prime Minister Narendra Modi will dedicate to the nation on Sunday, is India’s first and the world’s sixth tunnel to have transverse ventilation system, providing fresh air to passengers.
“This tunnel is the India’s first and the world’s sixth road tunnel with a transverse ventilation system enabled by ABB drives and controlled by ABB software,” an official of the ABB said on the eve of inauguration of the 9-km-long tunnel.
ABB is a global leader in industrial technology and operates in approximately 100 countries, including India, according to its official website.
The official said ventilation systems, for such long tunnels, are essential to maintain clean air, permissible carbon dioxide levels and expel harmful vehicle emissions.
“To ensure smooth travel and safety of commuters, the ABB has designed, engineered and supplied low harmonics variable speed drive (VSD) system for tunnel ventilation,” he said.
The VSDs and motors are installed at the North (Nashri) and South (Chenani) portals for air supply and exhaust.
“These VSDs are also equipped with inbuilt redundancy to ensure minimum downtime,” the official added.
The tunnel, constructed at a cost of Rs 2,519 crore, will reduce the distance between Jammu and Srinagar -- the twin state capitals -- by 30 km, while ensuring safe and swift passage for commuters, even in adverse weather conditions.
The ventilation system in the Chenani-Nashri tunnel, the longest highway tunnel in Asia, will ensure that passengers have access to fresh air as they drive through it, he said.
“This is a proud moment for us. We are providing the muscles and lungs for this critical new tunnel,” said Sanjeev Sharma, CEO and managing director of ABB India.
The Chenani-Nashri tunnel’s safety controls were developed by ABB in India, for effectively mitigating any fire emergencies, he said.
The tunnel, at an altitude of 1,200 metres, is a part of the National Highway Authority of India’s (NHAI) project between Jammu and Srinagar, along national highway 44.
Technologically, this is one of the most advanced road tunnels built in the country, surmounting challenges of terrain and distance, Sharma said.