Delhi has got its second driverless metro train. On 25th November 2021, the Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs, Hardeep Singh Puri and Transport Minister of NCT of Delhi, Kailash Gahlot inaugurated the Driverless Train Operations (DTO) via videoconferencing. The train ran on the 59 kilometres stretch between Majlis Park to Shiv Vihar on the Pink Line of Delhi Metro. Secretary, MOHUA, Durga Shanker Mishra, Managing Director, DMRC, Dr Mangu Singh and other senior officials of Delhi Metro were also present.
With this, the Delhi Metro’s fully automated network grows to about 97 kilometres, which is the 4th largest in the world and the only Driverless Train Operation network in India. The DTO facility was launched on the Magenta Line in 2020 with which the Delhi Metro had entered the elite league of the world’s 7% Metros which operate fully automated.
The Driverless Train Operation will bring more flexibility in train operations, reduce human interventions and human errors. It will also help in improving the availability of coaches for service. The Driverless Trains will eliminate the manual process of checking done before induction, subsequently reducing the burden on train operators. The parking on the stabling line in depots will also be done automatically.
The DMRC has already started reaping the benefits of driverless operations on its Magenta Line in terms of increased availability of coaches for service. The reliability of the trains has increased manifold due to exhaustive self-tests done before induction in service every day. automatically eliminating all possibilities of human error.
The benefits will further increase with a longer network under driverless train operation. In DTO, initially, the train operator will be present in the train to instil a sense of confidence and assistance. DTO’s higher level of diagnostic features will help move from conventional time-based Maintenance to Condition Based Maintenance. This will also reduce the maintenance downtime of trains.
After the completion of Phase 4, when driverless operations will be available on the extensions of the Pink and Magenta Lines as well as on the Aerocity – Tughalakabad Silver line, DMRC shall become the world’s second-largest driverless Metro network with 160 kilometres of DTO equipped corridors.