Indian Railways Deploy ISRO-Powered Real-Time Tracking Across 2700 Trains!
Indian Railways has installed Real Time Train Information System (RTIS) on trains which will help automatic acquisition of train movement timing at the stations, including that of arrival and departure or run-through”, the Ministry of Railways said in a statement on Friday.
Use of GSAT satellites
The technology was developed in collaboration with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
It makes use of information from GSAT satellites that have GAGAN payloads for tracking the movement of trains and relaying that information down to the Central Location Server.
The information that the satellite sends is almost real time and very accurate.
The train’s movement can be timely tracked, including that of arrival & departure or run-through.
The Ministry said that RTIS will give mid-section updates with a periodicity of 30 seconds.
Real time information flow to passengers
“The Train Control can now track the location and speed of RTIS enabled locomotives /train more closely, without any manual intervention,” it said.
RTIS devices have been installed for 2700 locomotives in 21 electric loco sheds.
As part of Phase-II roll out, 6000 more locomotives across 50 loco sheds shall be covered by utilizing ISRO’s Satcom hub.
“Currently, GPS feed from around 6500 Locomotives (RTIS and REMMLOT) is being directly fed into the Control Office Application (COA). This has enabled automatic charting of trains and real time information flow to passengers through COA and NTES integration,” the ministry added.
Chatbot to help book tickets
The newly launched Chatbot of IRCTC is receiving positive response from train passengers during the beta launch as over 1 billion people have used it, a senior IRCTC official said.
The official said that the new feature to book railway tickets enables customers to interact with the system via voice, chat and click-based system.
Additionally, the system requires no passwords and works based on the One Time Password (OTP).
The technology is powered by CoRover, a conversational AI Platform which is being used by more than 1 billion users.
As the official statement goes, passengers can book their train ticket in a conversational manner, leveraging AI Virtual Assistant, AskDISHA 2.0, powered by CoRover, the Conversational AI platform.
AskDISHA 2.0 has many features like booking tickets, checking PNR status, cancelling tickets, changing boarding station, checking refund status and answering queries like Tatkal timings.
The official further informed that this is a landmark step towards enhancing the passenger experience.
Saving time and enhancing UX
One of the benefits for passengers is that they can book tickets without needing their IRCTC password since it can be done with just an OTP.
IRCTC’s Chatbot AskDISHA 2.0 along with voice booking makes the process even easier.
The chatbot is intended to assist users with authentic, correct and instant answers to their queries.
Apart from saving time and enhancing the user experience it will also help them in doing end-to-end real time transactions.