- Automatic train operation
Automatic train operation (ATO) ensures partial or complete automatic
trainpiloting and driverless functions.
Most systems elect to maintain a driver (train operator) to mitigate risks associated with failures or emergencies.
Many modern systems are linked with
Automatic Train Control(ATC) where normal signaller operations such as route setting and train regulation are carried out by the system. The ATO and ATC systems will work together to maintain a train within a defined tolerance of its timetable. The combined system will marginally adjust operating parameters such as the ratio of power to coast when moving and station dwell time, in order to bring a train back to the timetable slot defined for it.
One of the earliest examples of ATO was on the
Victoria lineof the London Underground, opened in 1968. The ATO system performs all functions of the driver except for the opening and closing of the doors. The driver only needs to press two buttons to start the train and if the way is clear, then the train will automatically proceed to the next station. Many newer systems are now computer-controlled, including London's Docklands Light Railway, the Central Line, Line 14 of the Paris Métro, Line 2, Line 3, 5 and 11 of the Barcelona Metro, the Washington D.C. Metro, Hong Kong MTR, Manila Light Rail Transit System, North East Line and Circle Line of Singapore MRT, Tokyo Metro Namboku Line, Kobe Municipal Subwayand a number of ART- and VAL-based systems.
Nuremberg- [ [http://www.railwaygazette.com/news_view/article/2008/05/8408/driverless_operations_start_in_nuernberg.html Railway Gazette: Driverless operations start in Nürnberg ] ]
Rio Tinto- iron ore railway driverless go ahead [ Railway Gazette InternationalJuly 2008 p203 ]
For the purpose of these records, a "driverless" train is defined as one that normally operates fully automatically, with no on-board human intervention.
* Longest driverless network:
Vancouver SkyTrain, 49.5 km (30.8 mi) on two lines
* Longest driverless line:
Lille MetroLine 2, 31.7 km (19.7 mi)
* Longest driverless underground line:
North East MRT Line, Singapore, 20.0 km (12.4 mi)
Dubai Metro(c. 70 km in the first phase, incl. 50 km in one line) and Singapore's Circle MRT Line(33.3 km) are likely to take over the longest network/line and longest underground line records respectively when completed. [ [http://www.railway-technology.com/contractors/suburban/alstom/press5.html Railway Technology - ALSTOM chosen for the world’s longest fully automated metro line in Singapore ] ] [ [http://www.dubaicityguide.com/SPECIALS/index.asp?id=1379 DubaiCityGuide.com : Special Features - Schon Properties ] ]
Many railways are planning on using ATO in the future. ATO will be introduced on the
London Underground's Northern linein 2011and on the Jubilee linein 2009. ATO may also be used on the future Crossrail. ATO has not yet been implemented on any UK mainline railways.
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