ABB has received orders worth more than $180 million (about €166M) from rail vehicle manufacturer Stadler to supply traction and battery technology for more than 160 trains and locomotives in Europe and North America.
Close to half of the order is for 71 electrified trains ordered by the Wales & Borders railway franchise in the United Kingdom. In Wales, out of the 71 trains from Stadler, 24 will be equipped with advanced technology to enable tri-mode operation, which powers the train via catenary lines, diesel generator or batteries. Another 36 of the Stadler model Citylink tram-trains will go into operation in Cardiff to replace the current diesel fleet. The tram-trains will operate with overhead lines on parts of the network while switching to battery mode on non-electrified sections.
Additionally, ABB says its traction equipment will be installed in over 100 new regional trains and locomotives for operation in Germany, Hungary, Italy, Slovenia, Canada and the United States. The press release does not go into further detail. However, Morten Wierod, President of ABB’s Motion Business stressed that they can “supply the entire traction chain from a single source”. ABB makes the high-power onboard energy storage system for the trains using Lithium-ion battery cells in Baden, Switzerland.
Stadler also sits in Switzerland and besides holds a German subsidiary that recently scored an order over 55 electrified trains that can bridge tracks with no overhead lines as reported.
Also ABB’s propulsion system enables rail vehicles to operate on non-electrified sections of track without the use of diesel engines. The traction equipment converts the electrical energy from the overhead power line, generator or battery into the correct voltage and frequency for driving the traction motors.
The company said it booked the current with Stadler in Q1/2020 but has not specified delivery date in the accompanying communication.
ABB Motion oversees motors, generators, mechanical power transmission products and integrated digital powertrain solutions for the Swiss group.