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The story so far: Battery-powered trains at Deutsche Bahn

04-28-2022 – 07:28

Deutsche Bahn (DB) already operates around 90 percent of its passenger and freight transport services electrically and predominantly with green electricity. However, not every line has been electrified, so DB also makes use of alternative drives and fuels as part of its strategy to become climate neutral.

Deutsche Bahn (DB) already operates around 90 percent of its passenger and freight transport services electrically and predominantly with green electricity. However, not every line has been electrified, so DB also makes use of alternative drives and fuels as part of its strategy to become climate neutral.

Just one example: The first fully licensed battery-powered train started a series of test runs on the Gäubahn line on 24 January of this year. Having now clocked up 20,000 kilometers, the train has not only proven its reliability, but DB now knows that the battery operates well and that passengers and drivers alike enjoy the train’s performance. 

Trial runs in Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg 

The DB Regio and Alstom battery-powered train operates on weekdays in Baden-Württemberg and, at the weekend, it runs between Gunzenhausen and Pleinfeld in what is known as the “Franconian lake district” in western Bavaria. For this purpose, 30 locomotive drivers have been specially trained for this train. Trial operation will continue until the beginning of May 2022, by which time a total of around 30,000 kilometers should have been covered.

The routes in Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria are particularly well-suited for trial runs as their topographic features and different profiles make it possible to cover suitable distances. The tests also encompass charging the battery under a range of conditions and adjusting technical features.

In Baden-Württemberg, the battery charges while the train is in motion, and the vehicle runs in battery mode on certain sections of the route, which gives DB a chance to study its charging and power usage cycles. The Bavarian route is electrified only at the terminus stations of Pleinfeld and Gunzenhausen, which are the only locations where the train can get power straight from the overhead lines.

Contact

Natalie Kendzia
Head of
Marketing & Communications
DB Engineering & Consulting
Torgauer Straße 12-15
10829 Berlin
Germany
E-Mail+49 30 297-69901

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