OFC link between Tirunelveli-Tiruchendur rail section commissioned

Tiruchendur (TCN): Almost month after commissioning the Optical Fibre Cable link between Virudhunagar and Tenkasi railway stations, Madurai Railway Division on Monday commissioned the next leg of OFC link between Tirunelveli and Tiruchendur railway stations.

The exclusive link for railways not only enhances communication at passenger reservation systems and signalling at present but will enable the provision of WiFi facility even on running trains in future. The 62 km-long 24 fibre optic cable, installed at a cost of Rs 1.98 crore connecting the five block stations out of the 11 in the section like Tiruchendur, Arumuganeri, Srivaikuntam, Seidunganallur and Tirunelveli enhances safety in the block sections. At present, the capacity is 630 channels which is expandable up to 800 channels.

Additional Member (Signal), Railway Board, S Manohar commissioned the link in the presence of Southern Railway Chief Signal and Telecommunication Engineer A V Siva Prasad, Divisional Railway Manager/Madurai Division Sunil Kumar Garg, Southern Railway Chief Signal and Telecommunication Engineer (Projects and Planning) T M Sridhar, R.V.B.Babu, ADRM/Madurai and other senior officials from Signal & Telecommunications who were present at the Tiruchendur station during the occasion.

Railway sources said that OFC in future would enable dedicated channel for the communication between loco pilots and guards ensuring safety of train operation besides connecting axle connectors of signalling. Axle connectors connected through interlocking at present will have more safety when connected through OFC. At present, the communication between pilot and guard takes place through wireless frequency that can be interrupted.

In addition to superior quality of communication, OFC is free from copper and is, therefore, not prone to theft, a great relief to railway officials. This cable connectivity will provide an exclusive connection to operate passenger reservation utilities which at present are dependent on BSNL lines.

On April 8, Madurai Railway Division commissioned 123 km long OFC link between Virudhunagar and Tenkasi railway stations connecting eight stations in between for the cost of Rs 2.64 crore.

Apart from the use by railways in reservation channels and other axle counter utilities the spare capacity will be taken over by RailTel to provide internet facility at stations and in running trains in future as well as for commercial exploitation like providing cable TV in remote areas.

“Like in stations, WiFi facility could be activated in running trains using OFC technology,” a senior official from the division said.

On April 8, the 123 km-long OFC link between Virudhunagar and Tenkasi railway stations connecting eight intermediary stations at a cost of Rs 2.64 crore, was commissioned.