UAE: The pre-production prototype of a push-pull train, designed for operating at maximum speed of 200 km/h, was delivered to the country for tests back in Autumn 2022. It was officially announced just now though that the contract was signed with national operator Etihad Rail on delivery and a 15-year maintenance of 3 such vehicles. Each train will consist of 2 head cars and 5 trailing ones. The deal includes an option for another 20 trains (140 cars). The rolling stock is scheduled to be put in test operation in 2025.
The train is designed specifically for the country’s climate. The electric components and non-metallic materials were created considering high heat resistance for normal operation in high temperatures up to +60°C. The train is equipped with 8 independent air conditioning systems, which are designed to keep interior temperatures below +23°C. A three-level air filter system prevents fine sand and dust from entering the traction and conditioning systems.
The entire process from design to production and type testing of the train meets European TSI requirements, according to the manufacturer. It says that compressive longitudinal loading on the train’s body can reach 2.000 kN and car’s body impact resistance complies with EN15227 C-I standard, which specifies requirements for trains collision resistance.
As is tradition for CRRC, the rolling stock is fitted with a real-time monitoring system of component’s health, which is also able to predict equipment’s failures. The cars will have three classes: first, second and a family one.
CRRC says it will be the fastest diesel train in the world. However, DMUs for Etihad Rail of similar speed are already being developed now by CAF. Last July the company also signed a contract with Etihad Rail worth more $250 mln with a possibility to exercise an option and increase the order’s value up to $310 mln. However, the order’s volume, maintenance terms and rolling stock delivery dates have not been disclosed.
Likewise, 200 km/h is a maximum operational speed of a British train InterCity 125 (produced by Crewe Works in 1975-1982), and the highest maximum allowed speed for regularly run diesel trains in the world at the moment.