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Dubai Metro Network

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Dubai inaugurated its metro network in September 2009, becoming the first urban metro network to run in the Gulf’s Arab states. The system has eased the daily commute for thousands of the workers in the emirate.

With an economy increasingly based upon financial services, air transport, property development and tourism, Dubai has a rapidly growing population and severe traffic congestion problems. The population is forecast to increase by 6.4{193319180524fe1cbcf93f2fa4436f311e82d10b1113c9fa2c57b372435e0a56} annually, rising to three million by 2017.

“In full operation, Dubai Metro is projected to carry approximately 1.2 million passengers on an average day, and 355 million passengers a year.”

Dubai Municipality identified the need for a rail system to relieve growing motor traffic levels and support continuing urban development based on studies which began in 1997. Systra was awarded the preliminary engineering contract, and Dubai Rail Link (DURL), a consortium of four companies headed by Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), led the project to build the first two lines of the high-tech driverless rapid transit system. The other consortium members are the Japanese Obayashi and Kajima corporations, as well as Yapi Merkezi of Turkey.

The metro will be fully integrated within the network operated by the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA), a body created in 2005. Routes will be organised around the backbone provided by the rail system.

Around 1.74 million passengers used the metro in its first month, according to the statistics released by the RTA. The average number of passengers travelling on the Red Line is estimated at around 180,000 a day. Green Line passenger capacity is estimated to be 100,000 a day.

The Red Line was the first line to be completed, in April 2010. The Green line was opened in September 2011. Two more lines are planned. The intention is for 320km of metro lines to be in place in Dubai by 2020. Dubai Metro is the longest automated driverless system in the world.

DURL officials are also in the process of negotiations with major local and international companies for acquiring brand naming rights – in other words, advertisement rights – for the stations on Red and Green lines.

In February 2012 the Dubai Metro entered the Guinness World Records book as the longest driverless metro network in the world, spanning 74.69km.

Dubai Metro network early stages and gradual station openings

Groundworks began in February 2006, centred on the 52.1km Red line. As of April 2012 all 29 stations on the Red Line have been inaugurated. Eight of the Red line stations were opened in September 2009. Two stations were opened in January 2010.

Station construction stalled temporarily due to payment disputes – worth $2-3bn – between DURL and its contractors, but resumed in February 2010. Seven more stations opened in April 2010, followed by another three in May 2010 and five in October 2010. Two more stations were opened in March 2011.

In August 2006, a second contract worth $12bn was awarded to the MHI consortium for building the Green line. The Green line runs between Al-Qusais and Al-Jadaf, and links strategic locations including Dubai Airport and Healthcare City. In June 2007, Serco (operator of the Docklands Light Railway in London) was named as preferred bidder for initial consultation and the system’s operation and maintenance.

The Green line was initially planned to open in March 2010, but this was subsequently postponed to September 2011.

Infrastructure and routes of the emirate’s Red and Green lines

The 52.1km Red line has 29 stations, four of which are underground. The line runs from Al-Rashidiya to Jebel Ali and passes the American University of Dubai. It serves an estimated 32,000 passengers an hour. There are plans to extend the Red Line by 15.5km, a move which would add six stations to the route.

The 23km Green line has 18 stations, two of which are transfer stations shared with the Red line. The route is extended to serve the Deira and Bur Dubai central areas, up to the Burjuman and Wafi shopping centres. An 11km extension to the Green line has been proposed, to cover the route between Al-Jadaf and International City station.

The routes run underground in the city centre: from the Sheikh Rashid / Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed intersection to the Salahuddin / Abu Bakr Al Siddique intersection on the Red line, and from Garhoud to Oud Metha Road on the Green line.

Elsewhere, trains run on elevated viaducts designed to enhance the urban architecture along the route. The tracks do not cross highways at any point, ensuring full mode segregation. Although taxi, bus and water taxi feeder services were structured to encourage end-to-end use of public transport, the RTA created three park-and-ride sites, the largest of which has 6,000 places.

Underground works have been carried out without affecting buildings. A third-rail power supply was chosen to avoid the visual intrusion of overhead line equipment. All stations, elevated or underground, feature platform screen doors for passenger safety and to facilitate air conditioning.

RTA has introduced ‘feeder bus routes’ to allow commuters to travel from major locations in and around stations. Drop-off zones and a bus and taxi lay-by have also been constructed outside of each station. To further reduce the area’s reliance upon road transport, the authority is considering adding 268km of light rail lines which will serve as feeders to the Dubai Metro.

Rolling stock orders for the first urban metro network in the region

The driverless, fully automated trains are fully air-conditioned and designed to meet Dubai’s specific requirements. Unusual for metro operation, the trains offer standard ‘silver’ class areas, a women and children-only section, plus a first-class ‘gold’ section (a carriage for VIPs). The five-car sets are approximately 75m long, seating around 400 passengers but with standing room for many more.

Rolling stock is being supplied by Kinki Sharyo under a $456.2m contract for 385 cars, the first of which arrived from Japan in March 2008. A total of 87 five-car trains were acquired by the RTA, with 62 used on the Red line and 25 on the Green line. This will gradually be increased to 106 trains.

Storage and maintenance needs to take place undercover due to the heat and dust conditions in Dubai. The main depot is at Al-Rashidiya, and has a capacity for 64 trains. Auxiliary depots are at Jebel Ali and Al-Qusais.

The trains have a maximum speed of 90km/hr, forming a round trip of two hours and 23 minutes for the Red line and one hour and 23 minutes for the Green line.

Signalling and communications along Dubai’s Metro system

The fully automated signalling and communication system is being supplied by Thales Rail Signalling Solutions. The automatic train control system allows headways of between 90 seconds and two minutes.

In 2005, MHI contracted Alcatel (now Alcatel-Lucent) to supply the driverless train control system and a communications system for on-train video surveillance, passenger information, public addresses and the integrated control centre. Trains are Wi-Fi enabled.

The system’s control centre is at the Al-Rashidiya depot. The project’s signalling system is moving block and fully automated with in-cab signalling.

Emergency call boxes and LED systems developed by Trantek are fixed in the trains.

Future for Dubai’s Metro project, expansions and new lines

In full operation, Dubai Metro is projected to carry approximately 1.2 million passengers on an average day, and 355 million passengers a year.

“Dubai inaugurated its metro network in September 2009, becoming the first urban metro network to run in the Gulf’s Arab states.”

Operating costs, including staff, maintenance and power, should be approximately AED570m a year. This is expected to be met through fares and additional revenues such as advertisement space and joint development.

In May 2007, the 49km Purple line received approval, moving ahead of another future projection, the Blue line. Parsons Brinckerhoff has been contracted for initial design work on the express eight-station line from Dubai International Airport to Al Maktoum International Airport along Al Khail Road.

Construction is yet to begin on the line. Dubai airport has raised concerns as the line also has three check-in facilities which hamper passenger traffic.

The 47km Blue line will link the current international airport with the new Dubai World Central International Airport, which is being built at Jebel Ali, as part of a transport hub. Construction of this line will commence in 2012 and is expected to be completed by 2014.

In April 2008, the RTA announced that the development of the Yellow line, a light rail operation, would be carried out by a consortium including Serco and Alstom.

Article Source : railway-technology.com/

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Best tips to enroll in Online training courses in 2021

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People Management

Taking an internet course for the very first time? As a part of Coursera’s Teaching and Learning group, I have had the privilege to use countless teachers to deliver their classes to over 48 million individuals around the globe. According to research and best practices in our neighborhood, here are eight, go-to research strategies for studying online.

1: Set daily goals for analyzing

Ask yourself what you expect to do in your path every day. Placing a clear target can help you remain motivated and overcome procrastination. The goal ought to be specific and simple to quantify, for example”I will watch all of the movies 2 and finish the programming assignment” And do not forget to reward yourself once you make progress towards your objective!

Must check- People Management online courses

2: Produce a more dedicated study space

It is a lot easier to remember information if you are in precisely the exact same location where you learned it, so using a dedicated space in your home to take online classes will make your learning better. Eliminate any distractions out of the distance, and if at all possible, make it different from the bed or couch. A very clear differentiation between where you study and in which you take breaks will be able to allow you to focus.

3: Schedule time to research in your calendar

Open your calendar and decide on a predictable, dependable time which it is possible to devote to viewing lectures and completing missions. This helps make sure your classes will not turn into the very last thing on your own to-do list.

4: Keep yourself liable

Inform friends and family about the classes you are taking, article accomplishments to your social networking accounts, or site on your own homework assignments. Possessing a community and support system of family and friends to cheer you makes a huge difference.

5: Actively take notes

Taking notes may encourage active thinking, enhance understanding, and expand your attention span. It is a fantastic strategy to internalize understanding whether you are learning online or in the classroom. So, grab a laptop or locate an electronic program that is most suitable for you and get started synthesizing crucial points.

6: Join the conversation

Course discussion forums are a terrific place to ask questions regarding homework, discuss topics, share resources, and also make friends. Our study indicates that students who take part in the discussion forums are 37 percent more likely to finish a program. Thus make a post now!

7: Do you think at a time

Multitasking is significantly less effective than focusing on a single job at a time. Researchers from Stanford University found that”Individuals that are frequently bombarded with different streams of digital information cannot listen, remember information, or change from 1 task to another as well as individuals who finish one job at a time.” Stay focused on one thing at one time.

You will absorb more info and complete missions with increased productivity and ease compared to if you’re hoping to do several things at the same time.

8: Take breaks

Resting your mind after studying is essential to high performance. If you end up working on a difficult problem without a lot of advancement for one hour, have a rest. Walking out, taking a shower, or speaking with a buddy can re-energize you and also supply you with fresh ideas about the best way to undertake that job.

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Facebook’s virtual reality push is about data, not gaming

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VR systems

Facebook has announced the latest version of its successful standalone virtual reality (VR) headset, the Oculus Quest 2. The new device packs more computing power and a sharper screen than its predecessor, and is also US$100 cheaper.

The Oculus Quest 2 is the latest step in Facebook’s long-term strategy of making VR more accessible and popular. Facebook recently brought all its VR work under the umbrella of Facebook Reality Labs, it has announced new applications like the Infinite Office VR workplace, and will also require a Facebook login for future Oculus devices.

The compulsory link to Facebook has many consumers concerned, considering the social media giant’s chequered history with privacy and data. VR and its cousin, augmented reality (AR), are perhaps the most data-extractive digital sensors we’re likely to invite into our homes in the next decade.

Why does Facebook make virtual reality headsets?

Facebook acquired VR company Oculus in 2014 for an estimated US$2.3 billion. But where Oculus originally aimed at gamers, Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg wants VR for social media.

At the same event last year, Zuckerberg said Facebook sees VR as a pathway to a new kind of “social computing platform” using the enhanced feeling of “presence” that VR affords. For Facebook, the introduction of VR-based computing will be like the leap from text-based command line interfaces to the graphical user interfaces we use today.

This may well be right. VR affords a strong feeling of embodied presence that offers new possibilities for entertainment, training, learning and connecting with others at a distance.

But if the VR future is the one Facebook is “working in the lab” on, it will function via the company’s existing social computing platform and business model of extracting data to deliver targeted advertisements.

Virtual reality collects real data

A VR headset collects data about the user, but also about the outside world. This is one of the key ethical issues of emerging “mixed reality” technologies.

As American VR researcher Jeremy Bailenson has written:

…commercial VR systems typically track body movements 90 times per second to display the scene appropriately, and high-end systems record 18 types of movements across the head and hands. Consequently, spending 20 minutes in a VR simulation leaves just under 2 million unique recordings of body language.

The way you move your body can be used to identify you, like a fingerprint, so everything you do in VR could be traced back to your individual identity.

Facebook’s Oculus Quest headsets also use outward-facing cameras to track and map their surroundings.

In late 2019 Facebook said they “don’t collect and store images or 3D maps of your environment on our servers today”. Note the word today, which tech journalist Ben Lang notes makes clear the company is not ruling out anything in the future.

Virtual reality leads to augmented reality

Facebook wants to collect this data to facilitate its plans for augmented reality (AR).

Where VR takes a user to a fully virtual environment, AR combines virtual elements with our real surroundings.

Last year Facebook unveiled the Live Maps application, a vision of an expansive surveillance apparatus presumably powered by AR glasses and data collected from Oculus Insight. Live Maps will provide many minor conveniences for Facebook users, like letting you know you’ve left your keys on the coffee table.

Now Facebook have announced their first steps towards making this a reality: Project Aria. This will involve people wearing glasses-like sensors around Seattle and the San Francisco Bay area, to collect the data to build what Wired co-founder Kevin Kelly calls “the mirrorworld”, the next big tech platform.

People are rightly concerned about the ethical implications of this kind of data extraction. Alongside Project Aria, Facebook launched its Responsible Innovation Principles page, and they’re already quick to emphasise that faces and license plates will be blurred in this data collection.

As we have argued elsewhere, framing questions about VR and AR surveillance in terms of individual privacy suits companies like Facebook very well. That’s because their previous failings are actually in the (un)ethical use of data (as in the case of Cambridge Analytica) and their asymmetric platform power.

We need more than just ‘tech ethics’

Groups like the XR Safety Initiative recognise these emerging issues, and are beginning work on standards, guidelines and privacy frameworks to shape VR and AR development.

Many emerging technologies encounter what is known as the Collingridge problem: it is hard to predict the various impacts of a technology until it is extensively developed and widely used, but by then it is almost impossible to control or change.

We see this playing out right now, in efforts to regulate Google and Facebook’s power over news media.

As David Watts argues, big tech designs its own rules of ethics to avoid scrutiny and accountability:

Feelgood, high-level data ethics principles are not fit for the purpose of regulating big tech … The harms linked to big tech can only be addressed by proper regulation.

What might regulation of Facebook’s VR look like? Germany offers one such response – their antitrust regulations have resulted in Facebook withdrawing the headset from sale. We can only hope the technology doesn’t become too entrenched to be changed, or challenged.

But regulation has not always stopped Facebook in the past, who paid out US$550 million to settle a lawsuit for breaching biometric privacy laws. In the multi-billion dollar world of big-tech, it’s all a cost of doing business.

Another question we might ask ourselves is whether Facebook’s virtual-reality future and others like it really need to exist. Maybe there are other ways to avoid forgetting your keys.

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