Mumbai: Indian Railways has installed a GPS-based automatic lighting system in the parcel compartment of a train to avoid fires caused by short-circuits. The GPS-based system switches off the lights automatically as soon as the train reaches the speed of 20 kmph.
Short-circuits are one of the main causes of fire in the parcel vans. Since the lights are required only at the time of loading and unloading of goods, it was important to switch them off when the train moved. Doing it manually would have caused loss of time and effort. Therefore the officials decided to develop an indigenous GPS-based system to solve the issue. The system is installed in the generator coach to continuously monitor the GPS-coordinates of the train. The coordinates change as soon as the train starts moving. These changes are calibrated to know the speed of the train. The device gets activated when the train reaches the speed of 20 kmph. It switches off the lights by operating the interlock in the parcel van’s light circuit. A data logger records the switching off of lights by the GPS device. An LED indication GPS tells about the availability of GPS signals. A safety interlock actuates the lights if GPS signals are not available for a certain time period.