IRELAND: Rolls-Royce has been awarded a contract to supply 41 ‘hybrid-ready’ MTU PowerPacks for the additional Class 22000 inter-city diesel multiple-unit cars which Iarnród Éireann ordered from Mitsui & Co last year.

These PowerPacks will be fitted with MTU 6H 1800 R86 diesel engines complying with EU Stage V emissions regulations.

Delivery is to commence in 2021, with the PowerPacks to be in service from late 2022. They will have provision for the future installation of batteries, subject to the outcome of testing which is scheduled to begin in 2021.

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The existing Class 22000 fleet is powered by a total of 234 MTU PowerPacks. In 2018 an agreement was reached for three of these to be fitted with a ZF transmission designed to achieve fuel savings of almost 20%.

At InnoTrans 2018 an agreement was announced for Iarnród Éireann to test nine MTU PowerPacks with both the new transmissions and engines meeting EU Stage V emissions standards; these trials involving three DMUs are to get underway next month.

After the end of the trials, the nine will be returned to MTU to have energy storage batteries added, converting them into Hybrid PowerPacks These will then be trialled by Iarnród Éireann from Q4 2021, to help inform a decision about the possible conversion of more of the fleet to hybrid operation.

‘The series production MTU traction systems we are now supplying set new standards for cleanliness, reliability and fuel economy’, said Jürgen Blassmann, Head of Rail Business at Rolls-Royce’s Power Systems business, on July 24. ‘Following conversion to MTU Hybrid PowerPacks, Iarnród Éireann will use these drive systems to make fuel savings of over 30%, depending on the route, also reducing CO2 emissions by the same amount.’