First new all-electric train tested on Great Western Railway
18 July 2016 • Author: Katie Sadler, Digital Content Producer, European Railway Review
The first new all-electric train has been successfully tested on the Great Western Railway as part of Network Rail’s electrification project.
A new Hitachi Rail Class 800 Intercity Express Train has been successfully tested on the Great Western Railway from Reading to Didcot as part of a series of exercises designed to test the overhead electric power system.
All electric train travelled at speeds of up to 125mph on Great Western Railway
The train, travelling at speeds of up to 125mph, made two test runs between the stations on the mornings of Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th July, having arrived from its London depot. The test was managed by Network Rail, which is currently electrifying the entire line between London Paddington and Bristol, Cardiff, Oxford and Newbury, while the train was supplied by Agility Trains and Hitachi Rail Europe. The section of line will be used as a testbed for future power systems and electric train exercises.
Video showing first all-electric train travelling on the line from Reading to Didcot:
“This is a great step forward”
Mark Langman, Route Managing Director for Network Rail Western, said “This is a great step forward, and I’d like to pay tribute to the team who have worked very hard to make this happen. This is the future of rail being built before our eyes and it’s a very exciting time to be involved in this project. This weekend we’ve come a big step closer to providing faster, quieter, and more efficient services to the people of the region who depend on railways.”
Testing will now continue as construction proceeds on the Greater West electrification programme, with public services scheduled to begin from 2019.