From the planning, through testing to use
The City Council made a decision on the current automatic metro project in May 2006. A tender was organized in regards to the pre-planning of the project, according to which Siemens was chosen as the deliverer of the system in 2008. Immediately after the signing of the agreement, planning work in regards to the details began together with Siemens.
The automating of the metro will begin with the setting of new signal boxes and a utilization control system. The first electronic signal box will be installed to the metro depot at the end of 2010. The new utilization control system (ATS) will also be installed at the same time. The other four area signal boxes will be replaced over the period 2010-2012.
At the same time, with the signal boxes, the track devices required for the automation will be installed to the metro depot’s testing track and train devices to four metro carriages. The first tests will be run in the depot in 2011. Then, as planned, in late 2011, we will be able to build track devices to the whole metro line. At the same time, the installation of the train equipment will begin as serial work.
As the installation works progress, during the years 2012-2013, we will also gradually test the automatic trains on the metro tracks. The tests will first be performed during the night, but once the entire metro line has been equipped with the new equipment, the tests will also be performed during the daytime among normal passenger traffic. The trains under testing will have drivers present, but they will only control the trains in times of disruption.
Passengers should be able to travel on the test trains in 2013. The drivers will at that time still be present in the trains, in case of possible disruptions. Once the testing has advanced thus that the whole transportation is under automatic control, a six month acceptance test will begin.
At the conclusion of a successful testing period, HKL will provisionally accept the ordered system, and the drivers will leave the trains. After the preliminary approval, the system will perform a usability test in practice which will last two years.