Kerala Rail signs MoU with IISc for rail safety tech

Kerala Rail signs MoU with IISc for rail safety tech

October 1, 2021 Off By Sindy Thompson

IISc-incubated startup L2MRail, Society for Innovation and Development (SID), and IISc have signed an MoU with Kerala Rail aimed at enhancing rail safety, especially in risk-prone terrains.

The L2MRail team and IISc have pioneered the Fiber Bragg Grating (FBG) sensing technology for a structural health monitoring system (SHMS) for the civil engineering structures of Kerala Rail’s Silverline project.

The MOU was exchanged between Kerala Rail Managing Director V Ajith Kumar and IISc Registrar Sudhir Warrier in the presence of Govindan Rangarajan, Director, IISc, and B Gurumoorthy, Chief Executive of SID, IISc.

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The partnership addresses the need for accurate, real-time data on the condition of all rail structures. The team uses FBG-sensor technology to ensure the stability and integrity of structures even in the risk-prone terrain covered by the Silverline project. Ensuring rail safety in settlement-prone locations, flood-prone areas, earth slip locations, weak soil and heavy rainfall areas, and so on, necessitates a shift from conventional manual inspection. Constant, technology-driven monitoring of both running trains and rail structures offers the ideal solution.

Through this partnership, the Kerala Rail Development Corporation aims to ensure the safety of trains on the 530-km double-track stretch between Thiruvananthapuram and Kasaragod.

The FBG-sensor driven monitoring system will allow rail corporations to embed sensors in rail structures, enabling on-demand and continuous data, as well as 24/7 warning alerts in case of damage detection. The technology will also be customised for each structure and location.

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IISc researchers have explored the use of FBG sensor technology in a variety of domains ranging from aerospace to biomedical. Earlier L2MRail’s FBG sensing technology-based wheel impact load detector was deployed in two locations in Bengaluru with the support of Indian Railways and IISc.

L2MRail aims to take the technology to all parts of the country.