First Elizabeth line train runs on test track
8 August 2016 • Author: Katie Sadler, Digital Content Producer, European Railway Review
On 29 July, the first of 66 new Elizabeth line trains ran on the test track at Bombardier’s Derby facility ahead of entering service in May 2017.
The new 200 metre-long air-conditioned trains will operate on the TfL-run line, serving the West End, City and Docklands and running from Reading and Heathrow in the west across to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east, through 40 accessible stations.
Elizabeth line Class 345 trains will be able to carry up to 1,500 people
The new ‘Class 345’ trains will enter service at first on TfL Rail between Liverpool Street and Shenfield. The first trains will initially be seven carriages and 160 metres long to fit existing platforms at Liverpool Street. The nine carriage, 200 metre-long trains, which are able to carry up to 1,500 people, will be introduced from May 2018 between Heathrow and Paddington. All the trains feature walk-through carriages, air conditioning, CCTV for passenger security and real-time travel information. Each one is constructed from lightweight materials and will regenerate electricity back into the power supply when the train brakes, using up to 30 percent less energy.
“These state-of-the-art trains will play a key role in London’s future”
Val Shawcross, Deputy Mayor for Transport, said: “These state-of-the-art trains will play a key role in London’s future – helping to deliver a modern, world class transport system through the new Elizabeth line and enabling London’s transport network to cope as our population rises.
Mike Brown MVO, London’s Transport Commissioner added: “The Elizabeth line trains, which are a great showcase of British design and manufacture, will be running on part of our network within a year. The trains are fully accessible, will have air cooling, and once the whole line opens, they will help our passengers move more easily into and across the city every day.”
The new trains are being built and tested at Bombardier Transportation’s UK site. Peter Doolin, Bombardier Transportation’s Vice President Projects, Crossrail & London Underground, said: “Bombardier is delighted to be working with TfL on this flagship project to deliver new the Elizabeth line trains, which are based on our very latest Aventra product family, a new technology leading train for the UK. We look forward to continuing to work together with TfL in manufacturing, testing and introducing these new trains into service in London.”
The first train will now undergo a rigorous testing programme in Derby and from next month at the Old Dalby test centre in Leicestershire. Each train will be loaded with over one hundred tonnes of weight to simulate being full of passengers. Testing also includes taking a complete carriage into a climatic chamber to ensure passengers will be kept comfortable in London’s temperature extremes.
Once trials are completed, testing equipment will be removed from the first trains and the interiors of the trains will be completed with seats and moquette seat-covers before delivery for passenger service.