Indian Railways‘ longest electrified tunnel has proven to be a major game changer in the country’s freight transportation. The tunnel located between South Central Railways’ Cherlopalli and Rapuru stations was dedicated to the nation in 2019.
The 6.6km long tunnel is a part of 113 kms Obulavaripalli – Venkatachalam – Krishnapatnam Port railway line. The tunnel, an engineering marvel, has reduced the distance by 72 kms for the trains coming from Guntakal Division to Krishnapatnam. It also reduces the traffic density in Obulavaripalle – Renigunta – Gudur section.
Also Read: What is ‘One Station One Product’ scheme? How many stations are covered? All details inside
The full scale operation of the nation’s longest electrified tunnel started on June 25, 2019. Former Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu had called the tunnel as ‘a feather in the glory of Indian railways.’
The tunnel was built at an estimated cost of Rs 437 crores. It has 44 Trolley Refuges and 14 Cross Passages.
Features of Longest Electrified Train Tunnel –
(a) The tunnel is ‘Horse Shoe’ shaped.
(b) New Australian Tunneling Method(NATM) was followed during construction.
(c) The LED lighting provided at a distance of 10 meters inside the tunnel.
(d) The height of the tunnel is 6.5 meters (rail level to roof).
(e) The height of contact wire is maintained at 5.2 meters.
(f) The thickness of the full length lining is 300 mm.
This tunnel facilitates direct and viable connectivity between South Coast and West Coast and also enhances the freight basket of South Central Railway.
Also Read: Indian Railways set to become world’s largest ‘Green Railways’ by 2030
Meanwhile, the Railways’ is working on a plan to become world’s largest ‘Green Railways’ with Zero Carbon Emission by 2030. In the Financial Year 2022-23, a total of 4,100 TKM have been electrified.
Last week, during the launch of the country’s seventh Vande Bharat Express, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said that 20 thousand route kilometer rail lines were electrified in the first 70 years of Independence.