DB ICE1 (Photo DB/Wolfgang Klee)

GERMANY: Deutsche Bahn has awarded ABB a contract to supply Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor traction converters for the refurbishment of a further 76 ICE1 high speed train power cars.

The IBGTs will replacing existing power electronics from the 1990s, extending the vehicles’ operating lives for at least another decade.

ABB said upgrading to IGBT technology offeres an efficient and economical approach which would provide the level of reliability, energy efficiency and ease of maintenance of modern vehicles, along with energy savings of at least 8%, equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of 5 000 households.

‘ABB traction converters were already successfully deployed in a first batch of 40 modernised ICE1 high speed locomotives in 2010’, said Dr Philipp Nagl, Executive Director Production DB Fernverkehr. ‘This enabled significant energy savings, and reductions of operating costs that were higher than expected. Together with our investments in energy efficient new rolling stock and new maintenance facilities this project is another milestone to strengthen our position as the most climate-friendly transport mode.’

The power cars will be converted at a rate of two every two weeks, with the entire refurbishment project expected to be completed in Q3 2023.