What as per you is the future of steel bridges in our country?
As per the present report, the steel consumption in infrastructure is 10 per cent, which is targeted to reach 30 per cent by 2030. The steel bridges will play a major role in achieving this target. Hence, the future of steel bridges is considered bright in our country.
How has steel been a revolution in construction of modern-day bridges?
Modern steel bridges are taking advantage of the latest advances in automated fabrication and construction techniques can provide economic solutions to the demands of safety, rapid construction, aesthetics, shallow construction depth, minimal maintenance and flexibility in future use. Steel also scores well on all the sustainability measures and offers a broad range of benefits addressing the economic, environmental, and social priorities of the ‘triple bottom line’ of sustainability.
Which steel project that you’ve been involved in has impacted you the most? And why?
RDSO is involved in planning, design and fabrication aspects of bridges being built across Indian Railways. So, it is difficult to name any one project, however recently commissioned 4.9 Km. long fully welded Bogibeel bridge, across mighty Brahmaputra river is one such project. RDSO, has not only been involved in planning stage, but it has done the fabrication inspection of this iconic bridge of Indian Railways.
What is the inspiration that helps you to keep going even in the toughest of times?
The long history of Indian Railways as an organization and the responsibility which this great organisation has bestowed on me keeps me going in toughest of time.
What is your take on steel v/s concrete bridges?
Being a railway man, it is a natural choice of steel bridges considering the heavy fatigue loading it is subjected to. The Indian Railways is using concrete bridges for smaller spans upto 20 m. or so but for longer spans steel is the natural choice.
What are the recent developments in the steel fabrication segment as far as Indian Railways is concerned?
As mentioned above, Indian Railways has recently completed construction of Bogibeel bridge which was fully welded. As a measure to increase output from fabricators and increase automation in bridge fabrication, Schedule of technical requirement has been revised to incorporate CNC cutting, CNC drilling, Automatic beam welding machines and other machines for bridge girder fabrication.
The railway & metro stations abroad are mostly built in steel with great aesthetics. What stops us from following the suit?
Indian Railways is looking forward to such opportunities. Recently, it has resorted to construction of Stainless-steel Foot Over Bridges in some coastal areas, to have better corrosion resistant construction material as well as good aesthetics.
What plans does Indian Railways have to push the Indian infrastructure?
Railways is expected to receive a financial outlay of Rs 10-12 trillion over the next five years. For the railways, the major works will be a conversion of all viable rail tracks to broad gauge, electrification of all railway tracks, and completion of the two dedicated freight corridor projects by 2022. Indian Railways will contribute a lot to the growth of Indian Infrastructure.