Mumbai's Metro-3 will be one of the few in the world to run on AC


By R. Jadhav

It seems the authorities have ignored the wisdom of agencies running the most efficient Metros in the world, and chosen to run the 32-km-long Colaba-Bandra-Seepz (CBS) Metro corridor, or Metro line-3, on alternating current (AC).

While 97 per cent of the underground Metro corridors across the world run on direct current (DC), say experts, the CBS rail will run on AC, which is more intensive in terms of cost as well as labour.

Experts feel there may be a 15 per cent cost escalation in the project due to this, since it requires more digging for the rail to work on AC. Additionally, there can also be a problem of dumping the muck that would be excavated while tunnelling.

Euston to Watford line in London, UK, North London Line between Richmond and Gunnersbury, South West Trains’ Putney Bridge to Wimbledon, and rails in Russia and Chicago and New York are some of the Metros that run on DC.

Sources from MMRDA said that bidders for Metro line-3 are also in favour of the DC model. Incidentally, S P Khade, director (technical), MMRDA, while writing in a magazine specific to the railway sector, has said that the Delhi Metro’s decision to adopt 25KV-AC instead of 1,500V-DC was not a good idea. More info

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