Significant Metro-3 trials to begin in Mumbai next week | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times
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Significant Metro-3 trials to begin in Mumbai next week

Apr 22, 2024 08:56 AM IST

Each of the coaches of the eight-car train will be loaded with stone-filled gunny bags to determine the functioning of the trains with the weight of passengers

MUMBAI: The much-awaited Metro 3, also known as the Aqua line, has entered a crucial stage. Starting this week, the authorities will begin loaded integrated trials on the trains in the Phase 1 Aarey-Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) route. So far, dry runs with empty coaches were being carried out to test the metro’s designed speeds of up to 95 kmph.

According to sources, the loaded trials are expected to begin this week and will go on for a while. (Hindustan Times)
According to sources, the loaded trials are expected to begin this week and will go on for a while. (Hindustan Times)

Ongoing trials

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The term ‘loaded trials’ means that each of the coaches of the eight-car train will be filled with stone-filled gunny bags based on the train’s tonnage capacity. This is a way to determine the functioning of the trains with the weight of passengers before they become operational.

According to sources, the loaded trials are expected to begin this week and will go on for a while, along with other factors that will be documented during the runs. During the trials, the oscillation of the coaches on straight tracks and curvatures will be noted along with other aspects.

“We do not want to leave any margin of error before we open the line to passengers, as safety is paramount,” explained a government official. “Thus, the trials are very thorough. After this, the Research, Design and Safety Organisation (RDSO) and the Commissioner of Metro Railway Safety (CMRS) will inspect the various parameters of Metro 3.”

Sources said this was the first time in India that an eight-car metro train had a 75% motor for better operations and movement. Other metro lines have 50% motors. This is also one of the reasons why authorities like the RDSO and CMRS want to have a closer look during the trials before certifying the metro operations.

Current status

The project is almost 96% complete. The remaining work pertains to the beautification of stations, last-minute touch-ups to the stations and platforms, and other minor works. The Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) already has 19 rakes in its fleet, which is more than sufficient to operate Phase 1 of the underground metro corridor. Once ready, 260 services will cater to an estimated 17 lakh daily passengers.

“We are also working on the multimodal integration of stations, which will involve connectivity with other modes of public transport for the last mile, good footpaths outside the stations, seating arrangements and foot over bridges wherever needed,” said a government official. “Proper route indicators and signages too will be provided.”

The connectivity between Aarey Depot and the Metro 3 line, including the shunting neck, is also complete. This will allow free movement of metro trains for the trials. Sources said that work on Phase 2 of Metro 3 (BKC to Acharya Atre Chowk, Worli) was also at an advanced stage. The authorities are also working on getting necessary certification to operate in automatic train operation (ATO) mode. Metro 3 has the ability to be operated unmanned if required.

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