Delhi Metro engineers successfully increase Airport Express Link speed to 100 kmph record time

Increasing the operational speed of the Airport Express Link to 100 KMPH was a major engineering challenge for Delhi Metro’s engineers. Meticulous planning, round-the-clock supervision, and determination to not let the work impact passenger operations were the key highlights of this mammoth effort.  

Delhi Metro engineers successfully increase Airport Express Link speed to 100 kmph record time
Delhi Metro engineers successfully increase Airport Express Link speed to 100 kmph record time

NEW DELHI- Increasing the operational speed of the Airport Express Link to 100 KMPH was a major engineering challenge for Delhi Metro’s engineers. Meticulous planning, round-the-clock supervision, and determination to not let the work impact passenger operations were the key highlights of this mammoth effort.  

This will rank as one of the most challenging technological advancements in the history of Metro train Operations in the county. A detailed mechanism for the replacement of certain rail components, maintenance, and repair of civil structures, and re-profiling of certain Rolling stock components were put in place and the target was achieved only within six months, much ahead of the expected deadlines.

It is a historic technological advancement in Metro train operations as the raising of operational speed included a lot of track-related maintenance activities ensuring minimum inconvenience to passengers. The major activity included the replacement of more than 2.6 Lakh existing tension clamps located on the rails across the entire AEL network with high-frequency tension clamps to make them more compatible with the revised speed strength.

It was an extremely challenging task for the maintenance team to replace all these clamps for the entire corridor within the allotted maintenance block hours. More than 100 technical staff were deployed each night for the replacement of these clamps to ensure timely completion. After the completion of tension clamp replacement work, each fastening was checked thoroughly. The entire work on the UP and DOWN lines (46 KM total) of the AEL was completed within just six months due to the tireless efforts of the engineering team from different concerned wings of DMRC.

Since the Airport Express Line hosts thousands of national and international passengers every day, efforts were taken to ensure that the maintenance activities are carried out causing the least possible interference to Metro Operations on the line. At some smaller sections on the line, single-line movement had to be planned in the non-peak revenue hours. The passengers were suitably guided through announcements, social media posts, and press statements about the alternative routes during these affected hours.

The operational speed of the Metro trains on the Airport Express Line (AEL) have now been increased from 90 KMPH to 100 KMPH from today onwards i.e. 22nd March 2023 after receiving the mandatory approval from the Commissioner of Metro Rail Safety (CMRS). The speed of trains will further be increased to 120 KMPH in a graded manner subsequently.

The total travel time between New Delhi Airport Line to Dwarka Sec-21 Metro stations after the current increase in the operational speed of metro trains on the AEL will be around 21 minutes. Further, the travel time on the AEL will be reduced to 19 minutes only, after the maximum speed limit of 120 KMPH is implemented in future.

The 23 KM-long Airport Express Line is the fastest Metro connection in India providing seamless connectivity from the New Delhi Railway Station to Dwarka Sector 21 through IGI Airport T-3 and Aerocity. The average daily passenger journeys performed on the Airport Express Line is around 65000.

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