Unique commissioning accomplished: Mipro’s interlocking system controls the entire metro line in the capital area

A new interlocking system and operations control system delivered by Mipro were commissioned on the metro line during a break of one weekend on 11-13 January 2019.

Such an exceptionally tight schedule for a commissioning like this required careful preparation, testing and rehearsal beforehand. Despite the challenges, the commissioning was accomplished successfully and the metro line – which is crucial for passenger traffic flow in the capital area – started on Monday morning 14 January according to plan.

”Commissioning of the interlocking system proceeded smoothly and according to plan. Preparations made beforehand and the commitment of the personnel to the project both at HKL and at Mipro, the interlocking system supplier, played a key role,” says Artturi Lähdetie, director of the infrastructure and rolling stock at HKL with satisfaction.

The commissioning was a big effort for both organisations and their over 150 experts who were involved in the weekend’s commissioning on the spot in Helsinki; for example in equipment facilities, on the track and in the traffic control centre.

“Replacing the interlocking system on the metro line during such a short break is highly exceptional and requires in-depth expertise and knowledge from everyone involved,” says Mipro’s project manager Erno Nieminen.“

”During my career in the railway business I have been involved in various commissionings. This was, however, unique in scope and implemented on such a tight schedule. We had an excellent team working great together in the commissioning. Everyone’s goal was to get the metro traffic running on schedule on Monday morning,” comments Suvi Hyyryläinen, Director, Projects at Mipro.

The commissioning was preceded by a testing phase of several months to ensure that the existing track equipment and their interfaces function with the new interlocking system and fulfil the highest safety requirements.

Now, one joint interlocking system controls the entire metro line. It will especially facilitate traffic control work and this way the management of disturbances.

“Metro traffic can now recover from disruptions more quickly and easily than earlier. The management of traffic on the metro line will be, in other respects too, more flexible in the future,” says Artturi Lähdetie.

In conjunction with the interlocking system replacement, some improvements were made to the ATS (Automatic Train Supervision) system. This enables improvements to the passenger information system as well, for example train arrival times visible via the platform displays are now more accurate than earlier. The new interlocking system also enables new passenger information services.

Mipro’s delivery for the control of the metro line included an interlocking system, an operations control system and a passenger information system that replaced the existing systems on the line. The existing track equipment and cablings were used in the solution, but the interlocking system, i.e. the core ensuring safety, was replaced by Mipro’s equipment. Mipro’s operations control system (ATS, Automatic Train Supervision), which is in use on the West Metro line since 2017, was extended to cover the Helsinki metro area as well.

The metro line is 21 kilometres in length and includes 17 stations. The line runs partly in tunnels and partly above ground. It is divided into interlocking system areas controlled by a separate interlocking system. The metro traffic in the entire capital area is controlled centrally from the Herttoniemi traffic control centre with Mipro’s operations control system (ATS).

The commissioning in figures:

  • 822 track equipment
  • over 3,280 interface connectors
  • 6 test points
  • 2000 test cases
  • over 150 persons involved in the commissioning
  • over 100 km walking on the track to inspect the track equipment

The metro line running east from Ruoholahti is a continuation of Mipro’s metro deliveries in the capital area. The West Metro line was commissioned under the control of Mipro’s interlocking system in 2017.

Further information:

  • HKL, Director of the infrastructure and rolling stock Artturi Lähdetie,
    phone +358 40 673 1602
  • Mipro Oy, Director, Projects, Suvi Hyyryläinen, phone +358 044 749 1216

Mipro is specialised in railway and industrial systems. Our systems are used for safety management in railway and metro services and industry processes as well as for controlling processes in water and energy management.

Mipro is a growing business based in Mikkeli, Finland, with offices in Oulu, Espoo and Tallinn as well. We operate in the global market, for example in Eastern Europe. Our customers include the Finnish Transport Agency, Helsinki City Transport, AS Eesti Raudtee and numerous companies in the utilities sector.