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CZECH REPUBLIC: Škoda Transportation is developing a battery-electric multiple-unit for national operator České Dráhy.

The Type 15Ev3 BEMU is based on Škoda’s Class 650.2 RegioPanter two-car EMU, and will be capable of operating under 3 kV DC or 25 kV 50 Hz electrification, and by using a lithium-titanium-oxide battery which can be charged from the overhead or an external plug-in supply.

The trainset will be equipped with ETCS Level 2 Baseline 3, and have capacity for 160 passengers.

ČD plans to use four of the electric-battery units in the Moravskoslezský region, operating on a partly-electrified circular route from Ostrava to Bohumín, Český Těšín and back to Ostrava via Frýdek-Místek. They would also be used on the Ostrava – Studénka – Štramberk route, which is electrified as far as Studénka.

ČD also plans to call tenders for 42 similar BEMUs with a capacity of 140 passengers, of which 15 would be dual-voltage and 27 for 25 kV 50 Hz only.