Signalling is like your body’s nervous system – it's not something you can easily see or touch, but it's essential for trains to function.
The Metro Tunnel Project is upgrading Melbourne’s train network with next-generation High Capacity Signalling (HCS). We have installed the technology in the Metro Tunnel and on parts of the Cranbourne, Pakenham and Sunbury lines, to enable more trains, more often.
This is the first rollout of HCS on an existing network anywhere in Australia.
What is High Capacity Signalling?
High Capacity Signalling is the hi-tech signalling system used around the world that allows trains to automatically adjust their speed to maintain a safe distance from the train in front – similar to a car using adaptive cruise control on a highway.
HCS works by wirelessly communicating the location of moving trains to other trains, the railway line and back to signal control centres.
This digital system means the trains can safely move closer together compared to conventional signalling, which uses stop and go lights. This means more services can run.
Signal Control Centres
The control centre is like the ‘brain’ of the rail network, where highly qualified signallers monitor trains as they move along the lines and through the tunnels, and direct them if needed.
Our new Sunshine Signal Control Centre is purpose-built to work with HCS and monitor Metro Tunnel services. It uses the data transmitted by the HCS about train locations, to ensure all trains on the network are keeping a safe distance and know when to safely go or stop.