The first of 40 Omneo ‘Premium’ train-sets for Normandy has just come out of the factory. Now, the extensive testing program begins and a total of three trains are to be included in it.
Back in the end of 2016, we reported about Normandy being the first Region to choose the luxury version of the Omneo platform for its intercity services. The agreement oversees the delivery of a total of 40 trains and the first train, designated as 601XL, has already entered its first testing phase: from 27.08.2018 to 09.11.2018. Several other trial periods have been scheduled for this train for 2019.
Test train 1: 601XL
The very first test train, which can be seen circulating between the cities of Caen, Lison and Cherbourg, is not running in its final version – its equipment has been minimized in order to guarantee easy access to all mechanical and electronic components. The train will be running as a single unit, consisting of 10 cars.
The purpose of these initial tests is to validate the braking system performance of the new train-sets under three different load conditions:
- No Load
- Normal Load
- Exceptional Load
According to Bombardier Transportation France, the tests will be carried put with speeds of up to 200km/h and in conditions of normal or degraded adhesion. In order to simulate the latter, the rails will be sprinkled with soap.
Starting from November this year and until June, 2019, the 601XL will undergo a series of trials on the national railway network in order to guarantee braking capabilities, as well as infrastructure equipment compatibility.
Test train 2
The second test bed train will be fully equipped. Following trials on the Bombardier site in Crespin, it will be sent to Vélim, in the Czech Republic for further tests from mid-October 2018 until February 2019.
Test train 3
The third and final test train will come out of production in September and is to be equipped with an additional extra: a Wi-Fi network. It will be used in Crespin until February 2019 to carry out a series of functional tests on the interior equipment (gangway doors, passenger information system, sound system, etc.).
Starting from March 2019, both test trains 2 & 3 will be also used to run in multiple mode, initially in Crespin and afterwards on the national rail network until June 2019.
The testing procedures are essential to obtain authorization for commercial operation, which is planned for the end of 2019. Traffic circulation authorizations are scheduled for the months of January and May 2020. For further details on the project, make sure to check out our 2016 article, which contains technical information about the redesigned train-sets.
?Les nouveaux trains normands bientôt sur les rails ➡️ https://t.co/gPyiKXj4RR
Le 1er #train commandé par la Région à @BombardierRail vient de sortir de la chaîne de production. Du 27/08 au 09/11, il est utilisé pour réaliser les 1ers essais entre #Caen et #Cherbourg. pic.twitter.com/ZWatLKjHlO
— Région Normandie (@RegionNormandie) August 29, 2018