The first wave of transformative efforts by the Ministry of Railway in 2016-17 empowered the Zonal Railways and production units. The path-breaking initiative of passenger coach production units such as ICF, RCF and MCF brought out new dimensions in Railway coach manufacturing and new technology adoption on a large scale. New designs such as Tejas, Double decker, Smart Coach, Vistadome, Vande Bharat Express, etc., to name a few were the finest examples of innovation in indigenous development.
MCF, the newest production unit, achieved full capacity in just 3 years scaling up production year after year and poised to cross 200 percent (2000) of installed capacity by March 2020. This unit almost doubled its production every year for last 3 years. In addition attempted to make a foray into big league of Metro cars and EMU segments by several expression of interest. Modern Coach Factory (MCF) is also planning to assimilate aluminum coach technology through technology transfer route. This unit is on the path of sustainable energy from the 2MW solar power plant.
This unit has become only the Production Unit under Railway Ministry to achieve GreenCo PLATINUM rating. Rail Coach Factory (RCF) Kapurthala having consolidated manufacture of LHB coaches over the last 3 decades, has brought out new variants of coaches such as Tejas, Gatiman and double-decker coaches. RCF Kapurthala also has been manufacturing MEMU coaches for Indian Railways with a conventional propulsion system since the last decade. During 2017-18 RCF Kapurthala had finalized the contract for the supply of IGBT based 3 phase propulsion system and equipment for the new generation of MEMU.
With the decentralization of purchase, RCF Kapurthala was able to finalise the 276 sets of MEMU electric in January 2018. Further, RCF Kapurthala has planned to develop bogie for fully suspended motor for 160kmph and manufacture few trains for which the order has been placed on BHEL in January 2018. Such developments were possible because of decentralization and empowerment. Integral Coach Factory (ICF) Chennai, on the other hand, was at the crossroad of transition from conventional design to stainless steel coaches and LHB coaches. ICF 's old infrastructure was completely revamped by setting up new facilities and modernising old facilities.
ICF had to completely switch over to stainless steel coaches in 2017-18. ICF also had travelled in the path of innovation and developed a number of the new designs of rolling stocks for Indian Railways and Srilanka. The fully air-conditioned AC EMU, air-conditioned Metro rake with 3 phase propulsion system and equipment, first 3 phase MEMU, most importantly Vande Bharat Express (Train 18), Vistadome coaches are few examples of the latest innovation in the indigenous design of rolling stocks. ICF is the only factory in the country (also in the world) to have manufactured the highest number of coaches (Limca Book of world records) and self-propelled coaches.
ICF stepped up the production to 3205 in 2018-19 and aspiring to make 4200 by March 2020. ICF also undertook a number of sustainable projects to harness renewable energy by the installation of 2.4 MW solar rooftop plants in addition to 10.5MW windmills. In addition to Green Co Gold certification, ICF also has one platinum-rated green building and two platinum-rated green schools on the campus.