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Deutsche Bahn Begins Construction of Catenary Islands in Schleswig-Holstein. How Much Diesel Fuel Will It Save?

Deutsche Bahn Begins Construction of Catenary Islands in Schleswig-Holstein. How Much Diesel Fuel Will It Save?
photo: Deutsche Bahn/Deutsche Bahn Begins Construction of Catenary Islands in Schleswig-Holstein. How Much Diesel Fuel Will It Save?
04 / 11 / 2022

Deutsche Bahn (DB) has started building an innovative infrastructure in Schleswig-Holstein for the future energy supply of battery-powered trains.

Instead of continuous electrification of every kilometre of track, the new technology only requires the electrification of short track sections or individual stations. The battery trains use the short section of overhead line, which is only a few hundred meters to a few kilometres long, to charge their batteries for journeys in a section that has not been electrified. In the future, it will allow over ten million kilometres of train service in Schleswig-Holstein to be operated electrically, where diesel trains were previously used. It will save ten million litres of diesel fuel per year.

Initially, more than 30 additional catenary masts will be needed at the Kiel and Büchen stations. DB will then build the first catenary islands and charging substations for feeding the traction current on behalf of the state and the local transport company by the end of 2023 on the west coast of Schleswig-Holstein in Heide, Husum and Tönning.

"With innovative infrastructure and state-of-the-art technology, we are continuing to drive forward the expansion of alternative drive systems," says DB Infrastructure Board Member Berthold Huber. "Our goal is clear: Deutsche Bahn will be climate-neutral by 2040. Such creative solutions as the overhead line islands for battery trains will also help us achieve this."

"Thanks to the battery trains, diesel multiple units will soon be largely obsolete in Schleswig-Holstein. This innovative solution in the area of vehicles also requires new solutions in the infrastructure," says Schleswig-Holstein's Minister of Economic Affairs, Claus Ruhe Madsen. "The construction of the overhead line islands for the battery-operated trains is an important step toward climate-neutral local transport for the state."

After Kiel and Büchen, DB is also relying on innovative solutions at other locations. In March 2023, for example, work will begin on extending the existing overhead line in Bad Oldesloe and between Kiel and Kiel-Hassee, and from April 2023, on the Flensburg line in the direction of Kiel. And in two other German states, overhead contact line islands are also to be used in mass transit: In the southern Rhineland-Palatinate, preliminary planning has already been completed; in the Rhine-Ruhr region, preliminary planning has begun.

Source: Deutsche Bahn Press Releases

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