Season 4 Challenges

REWARD -INR 1,00,000

Iron ore of size of 10mm-40mm (Lumps) and <10mm (Fines) are transported through railway wagons to different locations. The wagons used to transport the ore are of BOXN and BOBSN, which are high-sided bogie open wagons with 55 Tons capacity. These wagons have typically 6 doors in total, three on each side. Further details about these wagons can be found here:

It is found that many times the wagon gates/doors do not close properly (as intended) because of wear and tear. This creates gaps of varying sizes. As a result, the loaded material (mostly Iron ore) comes out from these gaps during transportation. This problem is more evident in case of wagons that are loaded with fines.

To plug the gap, gunny bags are used, to seal the doors and prevent ore spillage throughout the entire the journey of transporting ore from loading point to the destination.  

While gunny bags help to avoid transit loss, it creates problems at the destination. For e.g. disposal of worn out gunny bags, improper sealing, and difficulty in positioning the gunny bags for sealing, while the doors are closed.

It is desirable to have cost-effective and simple methods to plug the gaps around the wagon door.

The solutions must meet the following requirements:

  1. The sealant should resist the impact of the ore contained in the wagon
  2. The sealant should not allow any spillage or transit loss of the ore
  3. The sealant should be easy to remove and apply to the wagon doors. For e.g. quick curing and no need for any equipment for curing.
  4. The solution provided should ensure that the iron ore is unaffected and should not end up with any contamination (foreign material) at the customer's end.


Please refer to the link to have closer look at the image to see the existing method of sealing the wagon doors using Gunny bags -

Have any query or need more clarification about this challenge?

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