According to a press conference held in Shijiazhung, Hebei Province, on June 19, Shuozhou-Huanghua Railway became China’s first heavy-haul railway to adopt a moving-block system, a major breakthrough in China’s heavy-haul railway technology.
The moving-block system is an optimal signaling system whose safety and transportation efficiency are universally acknowledged in international railway sector. In such a system, trains are continuously controlled and kept at braking distance from each other so that rear-end collision can be prevented. Shuozhou-Huanghua Railway took the lead to propose and conduct technological upgrading for the adoption of the system, with aims to break the bottleneck of transportation capacity, improve transportation efficiency and lowered transportation cost, and accelerate the drive of improving transportation structure by increasing cargo transportation by railway, so as to achieve high-quality development of the transportation sector.
It took eight years in developing key technologies and core equipment for the moving-block system for heavy-haul railway after large-scale experiment and research into applying it in projects. Four innovations were achieved, namely a moving-block system specially developed for China’s transportation demand, safety protection technology to deal with complicated application scenarios of heavy-haul railway, the repositioning technology based on wireless communication and BeiDou satellite navigation system, and the comprehensive safety support technology for the moving-block system. The system offers a solution to improving transportation capacity and efficiency of heavy-haul railway. With the use of the system, the average departure interval of freight trains will be shortened from previous 11 minutes to 7.3 minutes; the annual transportation capacity will increase by 400 million tons; the comprehensive maintenance cost of the signaling system will be reduced by around 20 percent. Therefore, the system will help mitigate safety concerns of transportation personnel and ease labor intensity of maintenance.
The opening of the moving-block system on the Shuozhou-Huanghua Railway filled a void in domestic technology and substantially increased the automation level of heavy-haul transportation system. It is of demonstration significance to ramping up transportation capacity of railways in China. In the meantime, with the use of moving-block system on heavy-haul railways, the advantages of railway transportation of being green, eco-friendly, energy-saving and highly-efficient will play out. In this way, it will further boost national railway transportation and social and economic development in regions along railways and contribute to the battle against air pollution.