Hitachi Rail wins $200m bid to deliver autonomous digital signalling for Chennai Metro

Hitachi Rail has signed the contract to deliver digital signalling for Phase 2 of the Chennai Metro Rail Project. The INR 1,620 Cr (aprox. $200million USD) contract will see Hitachi Rail install its cutting edge communication-based train control (CBTC) system combined with Automatic Train Operation (ATO), enabling services to run without a driver.

The CBTC system automatically controls the train’s traction and braking to continuously calculate optimum speed. The technology will allow trains to run at up to 90-second intervals, providing significant capacity as well as reliability on Phase 2 services.

By installing Automatic Train Operation (ATO) technology, Phase 2 trains will be able to depart, run at optimum speeds, and brake automatically, without the need for a driver. The technology will boost safety and drive significant maintenance savings. The system will also use ATO technology at the depot, for the operation of doors, and for passenger information and display systems.

The digital signalling system will be installed on the fourth longest metro system in India, serving the city of Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Phase 2 of the Chennai Metro Project will include 119km of line, with a significant proportion (42km) underground.

The contract, worth INR 1,620 Cr (equivalent to almost $200 million USD), will be funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The contract covers the design, manufacture, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of the signalling, train control and video management system.

Noriharu Amiya, Deputy CEO, Hitachi Rail said:

“We are delighted to bring our world-class signalling system to the Chennai Metro Rail Project.

“As a global leader in transport and technology, Hitachi Rail’s vision is to digitise and optimise every part of the public transport journey. By integrating our cutting-edge metro rail technology into Chennai Metro Phase 2 we can help boost capacity and support smoother, more reliable passenger journeys.”

From pioneering the introduction of ERTMS technology in Europe, China and India, to enabling AutoHaul™ in Australia, the world’s first autonomous heavy haul rail, Hitachi Rail is a world leader in autonomous and signalling technology.