In a bid to avoid technical snags and breakdowns, the railway authorities have asked the manufacturer to make certain modifications to the traction motor, even prior to delivery

Back in November 2007, when the railways procured its fleet of Siemens-made, violet-white trains, technical incompatibilities led to snags and breakdowns. For the next two years, problems kept cropping up. This time, the railway authorities aren't taking any chances. In the run up to receiving a consignment of 72 new trains for the second phase of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP-II), authorities have asked the manufacturing company to make some crucial modifications in the traction motor of the trains, so as to avoid the same snags.

On the fast track to change: Railway authorities have asked the
manufacturers of the trains to reduce the rotations per minute inside the
traction motors to improve the functioning of the trains. File pic

The modifications
Commenting on the suggested modifications, officials stated that the rotation of the bearing inside the traction motor would be reduced to around 3,800 rotations per minute (RPM) from the present value of 4,300 RPM, in trains presently in use.

Initially, when the problem surfaced, the bearings were moving at 4,800 RPM. The bearings reportedly failed to take the load of overcrowded suburban trains, resulting in frequent breakdowns. In a bid to improve train operations and reduce glitches, both WR and CR rectified this problem in 2009.

This time, the officials are also planning to increase the size of the traction motors in the new trains. This, hopefully, will improve the functioning of the motors and also prevent them from malfunctioning often.

"We have asked the new manufacturer to reduce the RPM inside the traction motors, which led to several technical snags last time," said a senior official from Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC).

The state government and the Indian Railways are jointly introducing these 72 new trains.