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Indigenization of RFID Tags Contributed to Significant Savings, According to Railways | India News


NEW DELHI: The focus on indigenization of radio frequency identification (RFID) tags, which are being used for all rail cars, coaches and locomotives, has helped to dramatically reduce cost. While in 2017 the cost per tag was estimated to be around Rs 1,000, they are made available by domestic players at Rs 250.
Railroad officials claimed that imports initially could have cost the national carrier up to Rs 5,000 per label.
These tags are attached to all four lakh wagons, coaches, and locomotives to enable railways to quickly obtain the exact location of each of these rail vehicles and also aid in predictive maintenance for increased rolling stock efficiency. Initially, when the label was designed by the Center for Railway Information System (CRIS) three years ago, the railways had estimated the cost at around Rs 1,000 per label.
The project is being implemented in partnership with GS1 India, which develops and maintains global standards for business communication.
“This is a completely 100% Make in India project and an achievement of government policy. Our dependence on other countries is much less, ”said an official from the Ministry of Railways who did not want to be named.
Corroborating how the project has made great progress despite apprehensions from global players, S Swaminathan, COO of GS1 India, said: “There were several apprehensions from other countries about whether we can do this. We try to work locally with CRIS to improve compliance with our requirements. This will go a long way to improving the efficiency of Indian railways. ”
He added that the focus of this initiative is to improve service and reliability with regard to the availability of rail vehicles. “This will help Indian Railways know where the railcars are across the country. The labels also record the recent maintenance history of the rail vehicle, ”Swaminathan said.
While the RFID tag will be installed on the rolling stock, the track readers will be installed at stations and key points along the tracks. The system can read the tag from a distance of one meter even when trains are moving at 160 km / h. Readers on the ground transmit the identity of the wagon over a network to a central computer and thus each wagon in motion can be identified and its movement tracked.
Until recently, around 23,000 wagons were covered by the RFID project. Sources said the project has been slowed down due to the pandemic, although CRIS has not yet pushed back the December 2022 deadline. Sources said all new cars come with RFID tags and the process is underway to cover the old ones. .
Similar exercises are being carried out in many European countries and the goal in all railway entities is to improve service reliability and a single view of the maintenance history of wagons and components.

Times of India