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High speed trainsets take shape

01 Aug 2005

Chinese Railways has ordered three fleets of high speed trains for operation of 200 km/h regional inter-city services

TO OPERATE its emerging network of dedicated passenger routes (p479), Chinese Railways expects to put into service by 2015 a fleet of 1000 trainsets designed to operate at speeds of 200 km/h or more.

Tenders are to be called next year for the very high speed trains to operate on the 300 to 350 km/h routes, but work is already underway on three fleets of 200 km/h trainsets to operate intermediate services on regional corridors and the three inter-city networks.

To support the high speed fleet, the Ministry of Railways is planning to develop four major depot and workshop complexes in Beijing, Shanghai, Wuhan and Guangzhou, each with a capacity of around 250 trainsets.

As part of the ongoing speed-up programme, CR and the China Academy of Railway Sciences have been working for several years on developing a range of locally-built 200 km/h trainsets to work on existing lines. In addition, the China Star trainset (RG 6.03 p344) was developed by a consortium of Chinese manufacturers at a cost of 100m yuan for operation at up to 300 km/h on the Beijing - Shenyang high speed line.

However, when the present Minister of Railways Liu Zhijun took office in mid-2003, the ministry's focus changed from developing domestic technology to addressing rapidly the growing bottlenecks on the railway network.

Faced with the need to build up a large fleet of high speed trains in a relatively short timescale, the Ministry of Railways decided to call international tenders for the supply of 140 trainsets, split into seven batches of 20 units. On October 9 2004 technology transfer contracts were awarded to three international consortia.

Shinkansen success

A ¥140bn contract for 60 eight-car trainsets was awarded to a consortium of Japanese companies led by Kawasaki that includes Hitachi, Itochu Corp and Mitsubishi Corp, Mitsubishi Electric and Marubeni Corp, working with the Nache Sifang subsidiary of the China Southern Locomotive & Rolling Stock Industry Co. As consortium leader, in charge of managing the overall design and manufacture of the 480 vehicles, Kawasaki's share of the contract is worth ´80bn.

The Japanese trainsets will be based on the E2-1000 Shinkansen design used by JR East for its premier Tokyo - Hachinohe Hayate services launched in December 2002. The first three trains will be supplied complete from Japan and the following six in knocked-down form. The remaining 51 sets will be assembled in China by Nache Sifang over the next two years under the terms of the technology transfer deal.

An improved variant of JR East's E2 design, the E2-1000 achieved 362 km/h during a high-speed test run on the Joetsu Shinkansen between Urasa and Niigata on April 6 2003. The design features a double-skin carbody structure and 25 kV 50Hz traction equipment. The E2-1000 driving trailers and first class car have active suspensions for 275 km/h operation, whilst semi-active suspensions are used on the remaining vehicles (Table I). VVVF traction controls and three-phase motors are fitted.

The Japanese sets have a 10-car formation with two driving trailers and eight motor vehicles, seating 814. The Chinese sets will be shorter, as an eight-car formation has been selected as standard. Two trainsets will be able to operate in multiple.

Wide-bodied Pendolino

Another 60 trainsets are being supplied by Alstom in conjunction with China Northern's subsidiary Changchun Railway Vehicles. Other Chinese companies such as Yongji are supplying subsystems for the trains which are expected to enter commercial service in 2007. Based at Beijing, the units will run on the northern routes around Beijing and Harbin.

In a similar breakdown to the Kawasaki contract, the first three Alstom trains are due to be completed in France, with parts for the next six being shipped to China for local assembly. The remaining 51 sets will be built at Changchun. Components will be sourced from Alstom's plants at Savigliano and Sesto San Giovanni in Italy and from Tarbes and Ornans in France.

The design is derived from the wide-bodied Finnish variant in Alstom's tilting Pendolino family, with bodyshells formed of extruded aluminium profiles. There will be no provision for tilt. Maximum width of the Chinese sets will be 3200mm (Table II). The air-conditioned trains will be sealed to cope with pressure pulses from two trains passing at 200 km/h in double-track tunnels. The trains are being designed to operate in temperatures ranging from -25°C to +40°C.

Each eight-car trainset will be powered by 10 underframe-mounted asynchronous traction motors, giving a total continuous rating of 5500 kW. The 6·5 kV IGBT traction controls will be water-cooled, with three transformers and five converter sets to offer a degree of redundancy. Rheostatic and regenerative braking will be fitted, and two units will be able to operate in multiple.

Styling has been placed in the hands of Giugiaro Design. Seating will be arranged 2+2 in first class and 2+3 in second class. An eight-car set will have 622 seats. There will be a mix of face-to-face seating with tables and airline-style face-to-back seats. For improved circulation, the internal and external doors will have a clear width of 800mm, as will the internal gangway and inter-car connections. Retractable steps will be fitted at each doorway.

Each trainset will include an area for passengers with reduced mobility, including a wheelchair-accessible toilet. There will also be a bar-cafe area and catering service facilities including hot water dispensers for tea making. The passenger information system includes audio and visual displays, plus external announcement facilities. As well as automated announcements, there is provision for manual broadcasts by driver or train crew members. On-train entertainment will be provided, with the first class cars featuring armrest-mounted headphone controls and drop-down ceiling-mounted video monitors.

Regina variant in the south

The remaining 20 trainsets in the initial tranche are coming from the established Bombardier Sifang Power joint venture in Qingdao, which is already building loco-hauled inter-city stock for CR. Under the US$424m order, the C2008 trainsets are due for delivery between July 2006 and July 2007, and are expected to be used on routes in the south of the country.

On June 27 this year the Ministry of Railways signed a 'strategic co-operation framework agreement' with Bombardier which provides for the purchase of additional trainsets, starting with an option for 20 more eight-car sets for delivery in 2007-08.

This accord also includes an agreement for the consortium to develop and support the Guangzhou maintenance depot able to service up to 250 high speed EMUs. The ministry will provide land for the depot, which will be designed and equipped by Bombardier. The company will also supply maintenance management services, spare parts, technical support and training over 20 years.

The C2008 trains are being designed at Västerås in Sweden, where some of the propulsion equipment will be manufactured. Bogies will come from Bombardier's Siegen plant, and the trains will be assembled by BSP at Qingdao. The design is a development of the wide-bodied Regina EMUs now in widespread use on regional services in southern and western Sweden.

Electrically, each train will be split into three units. Two will be formed with a driving motor, pantograph trailer and non-driving motor car, and the middle section will pair another non-driving motor and trailer car. This will give 20 powered axles out of 32 (Fig 1).

With a body width of 3 328 mm, the C2008 can easily accommodate the required 2+3 seating for standard class and 2+2 in first class, giving a total of up to 760 seats in an eight-car train (Table III). Seating will be a mix of face-to-face with tables and face-to-back airline style. Each vehicle will have a single wide doorway offset from the centre of the car, opening into a large vestibule area with toilets and related services. A bistro area will be included in each trainset.

Table I. Japanese E2-1000 Shinkansen trainsets

Car body length (driving) m 25·7
Car body length (intermediate) m 25·0
Maximum width mm 3 380
Maximum height above rail mm 3 915
Maximum axleload tonnes 12

Table II. Alstom CA250 trainsets

Gauge mm 1 435
Power supply 25 kV 50Hz
Maximum speed km/h 200
Maximum acceleration m/s² 0·6
Car length mm 27 600
Length of eight-car trainset m 211·5
Maximum car width mm 3 200
Floor height above rail mm 1 270
Maximum axleload tonnes 17
Seating: first class 60
second class 562
Wheelchair spaces 1

Table III. Bombardier C2008 trains

Gauge mm 1 435
Power supply 25 kV 50 Hz
Maximum speed km/h 200
Maximum acceleration m/s² 0·6
Overall width mm 3 328
Roof height mm 4 040
Floor height above rail mm 1 250
Maximum axleload tonnes 16
Length of eight-car trainset m 214
Total weight tonnes 420
Number of seats (max) 760
Toilets per trainset 14



Regional high speed trains take shape

Chinese Railways has ordered three fleets of high speed trains for regional services running at up to 200 km/h. Alstom is to build a fleet of 60 eight-car trains based on the Pendolino design which will enter service in 2007, with a technology transfer deal providing for 51 of the sets to be assembled in China. Bombardier has contracts for two batches of 20 C2008 trainsets, which are derivatives of the wide-bodied Regina design; the company also has a long-term framework agreement to supply more trains and to establish a maintenance centre in Guangzhou able to look after 250 trainsets. Kawasaki, working with a group of other Japanese companies and Nanche Sifang Locomotive Co, is supplying 60 trainsets developed from the E2-1000 Shinkansen trains built for JR East.

Les trains régionaux à grande vitesse prennent forme

Les chemins de fer chinois ont commandé trois séries de trains à grande vitesse pour services régionaux, roulant jusqu'à 200 km/h. Alstom va construire un parc de 60 rames de huit voitures basées sur le concept du Pendolino, pour une entrée en service en 2007, avec un accord de transfert de technologie grâce auquel 51 de ces rames seront assemblées en Chine. Bombardier a des contrats pour deux séries de 20 rames C2008, dérivées du concept Regina à caisses larges; la société a aussi un accord-cadre à long terme pour la fourniture de plus de trains et pour établir un centre d'entretien à Guangzhou, capable d'entretenir 250 rames. Kawasaki, associé à un groupe d'autres sociétés japonaises plus Nanche Sifang Locomotive Co, va fournir 60 rames réalisées à partir des rames Shinkansen E2-1000 construites pour JR East

Regionale Hochgeschwindigkeitszüge nehmen Form an

Die Chinesischen Bahnen haben drei Serien von Hochgeschwindigkeitszügen mit Höchstgeschwindigkeit 200 km/h für regionale Einsätze bestellt. Alstom baut eine Serie von 60 Achtwagenzügen, basierend auf dem Pendolino-Modell, welche 2007 in Betrieb kommen sollen. Dies erfolgt unter einem Technologie-Transfer-Geschäft, bei welchem 51 Züge in China montiert werden. Bombardier hat Verträge für zwei Tranchen zu 20 C2008-Zügen, welche von der breiten Regina-Konstruktion abgeleitet sind, und es besteht ein Rahmenvertrag für weitere Züge sowie für den Aufbau eines Wartungszentrums in Guangzhou, das in der Lage sein wird, 250 Einheiten zu betreuen. Kawasaki, zusammen mit weiteren japanischen Unternehmen sowie Nache Sifang Locomotive Co, liefert 60 Züge, welche aus dem E2-1000 Shinkansen-Zug für JR East entwickelt worden sind

Los trenes de alta velocidad regionales toman forma

El Ministerio de Ferrocarriles de China ha encargado tres parques de trenes de alta velocidad para servicios regionales que funcionan a velocidades de hasta 200 km/h. Alstom construir  un parque de 60 trenes de ocho coches, basados en el diseño del Pendolino, y que se pondr n en funcionamiento en 2007, con un trato de transferencia de tecnología que garantiza que 51 de los trenes se montar n en China. Bombardier tiene contatos para dos series de 20 trenes C2008, que son derivados del diseño del Regina con caja ancha; la compañía también tiene un acuerdo marco a largo plazo para suministrar m s trenes y establecer un centro de mantenimiento en Guangzhou con capacidad para 250 trenes. Kawasaki, junto con un grupo de otras compañías japonesas y Nanche Sifang Locomotive Co, suministra 60 trenes desarrollados a partir de los trenes Shinkansen E2-1000 construidos por JR East