The new hybrid Alvia S-730 train made its first test run on 20 September. This train can be propelled by both diesel and electricity, which extends the benefits of high speed to non-electrified sections, and it has a variable gauge system that also allows it to travel on both conventional and international gauge tracks.
The Alvia Series 730 train, manufactured by the consortium Talgo-Bombardier, is a hybrid (diesel and electric) train with dual voltage, variable gauge and five different control and safety systems. It is based on the Series 130 trains by Talgo, to which diesel traction equipment and two engines of 1,800 kW with alternator and rectifier are added.
Renfe, through its industrial division Integria, is managing the engineering and innovation project involving rail manufacturers Talgo and Bombardier, which will culminate in a fleet of 15 hybrid trains and whose investment amounts to 74 million euros.
The new cars housing the diesel engines also include cooling towers, converters for railway auxiliary services, 2,000 litre tanks for fuel and two-axle variable gauge bogies to change networks. It is therefore a project that puts Renfe and the Spanish railway industry at the forefront of innovation again.
Seven trains are currently under conversion, out of which three have already undergone the corresponding static, dynamic, braking and approval tests, both in conventional and high-speed lines. The S-730 trains will have 216 seats in Economy Class, 26 seats in Business Class and a restaurant car.
The new Alvia S-730 trains can reach 250 km/h on high-speed tracks and 220 km/h on electrified conventional tracks, while their top speed on non-electrified conventional tracks is 180 km/h. The signalling systems incorporated on these trains (ERTMS, LZB and digital Asfa) ensure interoperability across the Spanish railway network and complete the technical data of one of the most versatile high-speed trains in the world.
High speed to reach Galicia
As of December 10 Galicia will have its first high-speed line, which will link the cities of Orense, Santiago and La Coruña. Along these lines, Renfe will implement the Avant service for medium-haul traffic with the high-speed Series 121 trains, with a capacity of 281 seats.
This train is made up of four cars. The inside has reclining seats, footrest, table, folding arm and plug, all single use, all of which make this train one with the highest level of comfort for passengers. Suitable to run on different track gauges and with dual voltage, it will allow a reduction of one hour in travel time between Orense and La Coruña.