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[News Article] Faults affect Circle Line due to "intermittent signalling issues"
#1
Faults affect Circle Line for whole day
From: Straits Times
By: Christoper Tan
Date: 30/08/16

Rail operator SMRT was unable to fix a signalling fault that affected service on the Circle Line for the whole of yesterday.

The glitch, which the operator described as "intermittent signalling issues", slowed train speeds and reduced service frequency during the morning peak period.

Commuters took to social media to complain of packed stations. Other users tweeted that faulty sensors were causing train doors to shut on commuters.

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Circle Line fault extends to Day 2, draws commuters' ire
From: Straits Times
By: Christoper Tan
Date: 31/08/16

A signalling glitch affecting the Circle Line remained unresolved for a second day yesterday, as operator SMRT said it was working with the Land Transport Authority and systems supplier Alstom to fix the flaw.

Since Monday morning, commuters using the Circle Line have faced long waits, slower trains and overcrowded stations.

The Straits Times understands the system stabilised on Monday evening, but the glitch resurfaced yesterday morning to the ire of commuters. One tweeted at 7.24am asking why there were no announcements about the delay. "The train is not moving between Holland Village and Farrer Road," he posted.

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Circle Line glitch persists for fourth day
From: Straits Times
By: Christoper Tan
Date: 02/09/16

Experts say the four-day-long glitch causing delays on the Circle Line is a "serious" issue, even as the operator and the authorities say they are working "round the clock" to resolve the issue.

Since Monday morning, trains on the five-year-old line have had to apply emergency braking several times a day as they intermittently lose signalling communication with the tracks, leading to longer journeys.

National University of Singapore transport researcher Lee Der- Horng said: "It sounds quite serious to me... it's been four days."

[Read More]

Two-hour shutdown of mobile access at 4 Circle Line stations as probe into signal interference intensifies
From: Straits Times
By: Christoper Tan
Date: 02/09/16

SINGAPORE - Commuters on the Circle Line will not be able to use their mobile devices at Kent Ridge, Haw Par Villa, Pasir Panjang and Labrador Park stations between 7pm and 9pm on Friday (Sept 2) evening.

In a joint announcement made at 6.38pm, the Land Transport Authority and rail operator SMRT said the two-hour shutdown was to eliminate telecommunication signals as a possible cause of a mysterious technical glitch that has bugged the five-year-old line since Monday.

"This temporary suspension of mobile communication services will affect commuters only while they are travelling in the underground tunnels along these four stations and on the stations' underground platforms while waiting for train arrivals," the joint statement read.

[Read More]

How does the Circle Line train signalling system work?
From: Straits Times
By: Christoper Tan
Date: 02/09/16

Reader Andrew Kurniawan Ng wanted to know how the MRT signalling system works, and why a glitch in it can cause such "havoc" as seen on the Circle Line this week.

Senior Transport Correspondent Christopher Tan replies:

Signalling refers to a broad range of systems which allow trains to run safely. In the Circle Line, the trains are fitted with a communications-based train control "moving block" signalling system.

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#2
Circle Line glitch-free since Friday evening
From: Straits Times
By: Christoper Tan
Date: 05/09/16

SINGAPORE - They say no news is good news, and that certainly seems to apply to the Circle Line.

The line has been operating normally since Friday evening following a string of delays last week.

Since last Monday morning, service on the five-year-old MRT line had been glitchy because a mysterious interference in the tunnels was creating havoc with the trains' signalling system.

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#3
Circle Line trains could get electromagnetic shields to minimise signal disruption: LTA, SMRT
From: CNA
Date: 21/09/16

SINGAPORE: Authorities will explore the use of electromagnetic shields on trains to minimise the impact of interfering signals that have caused repeated delays on the Circle Line, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) and public transport operator SMRT said on Wednesday (Sep 21).

The possibility was mooted as part of feasibility studies that LTA and SMRT said they would undertake to strengthen the existing signalling communications network.

In a joint news release, LTA and SMRT said that they would also explore the possibility of changing the signal system frequency and/or modifying the system to provide redundancy in the event of signal interference.

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#4
Circle Line Signalling Problems Caused by Intermittent Failure of Signalling Hardware on Train
News Release 11/11/16

1. After several weeks of investigations, a joint team comprising the Land Transport Authority (LTA), SMRT, the signalling system manufacturer Alstom, the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), the Defence Science & Technology Agency (DSTA), DSO National Laboratories, the Government Technology Agency of Singapore (GovTech) and electro-magnetic interference specialist Rohde & Schwarz, has traced the source of the signalling problems on the Circle Line (CCL) to an intermittent failure of the signalling hardware on one train, Passenger Vehicle 46 (PV46).

2. Between 2 and 6 November 2016, this intermittent hardware failure had caused Since early September 2016, there has been no occurrence of similar signalling faults until this morning, about 100 occurrences of loss of signalling communications on trains travelling in the proximity of PV46. The loss of communications on these trains resulted in their emergency brakes being automatically activated, which is a safety feature. Our ongoing investigations indicate a strong likelihood that intermittent hardware failure on PV46 was also the cause for the about 200 occurrences of loss of signalling communications on CCL trains between 28 August and 2 September 2016.

Investigation Findings

3. An initial hypothesis was that interference from telecommunications signals may have caused the repeated activation of the trains’ emergency brakes. To test this, LTA, together with IMDA and the mobile network operators, suspended mobile telecom services across the entire CCL for two hours in the evening of 3 November 2016, and then for a full day on 4 November 2016. These tests showed that telecommunications signals were not the source of the interference.

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