Kavach Technology

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Kavach is an indigenously developed technology that could prevent two trains from colliding. It is India՚s own automatic protection system that has been in development since 2012 under the name Train Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) which got rechristened to Kavach or “armour” . It consists of a set of electronic devices and Radio Frequency Identification devices installed in locomotives including the signaling system and the tracks talking to each other using ultraviolet high radio frequencies for controlling the brakes of trains and alerting drivers. This technology uses Ultra High Frequency.

Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) or Kavach includes the key elements from already existing, tried, and tested systems like the European Train Protection and Warning System including the Indigenous Anti-Collision Device.

Automatic Train Protection System

About

  • Kavach can continuously refresh the movement information of a train.
  • Triggers are sent out when a pilot jumps signal called Signal Passed at Danger (SPAD) which is a great offence in railway operations with respect to safety along with the key to accidents like collision.
  • The device further assists the loco pilots in low visibility, especially during dense fog by relaying the signals ahead to the locomotive.
  • Kavach would also carry features of the high-tech European Train Control System Level-2 in future.
  • The current form of Kavach adheres to the highest level of safety along with reliability standard known as Safety Integrity Level 4.
  • India wants to position Kavach as an explorable system in the new avatar which is a cheaper alternative to the European systems in vogue across the world.
  • The system is being developed by the Research Designs and Standards Organisation (RDSO) at Lucknow in UP along with private vendors.

Way Forward

  • To make Kavach compatible with 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology.
  • To make products for global markets.
  • To make Kavach compatible with other already installed systems globally.
  • Once rolled Kavach would be world՚s cheapest Automatic Train Protection System along with the cost of rollout pegged at around ₹ 30 lakh to 50 lakh per kilometer which is a fourth of the cost of equivalent systems globally.
  • Till date Kavach has been deployed on over 1,098 km and 65 locomotives in ongoing projects of the South-Central Railway.
  • In future it would be implemented on 3000 km of the Delhi-Mumbai and Delhi-Howrah corridors wherein the tracks and subsystems are being upgraded for hosting a top speed of 160 kmph.

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