The first five wagons of the new train have been on the road since Sunday. They are stronger than their 40-year-old predecessors, braking energy back and baby-blue painted.
The previous 40-year-old car with the type designation “GTW 1972” shall be exchanged until 2018. End of 2015 were sold 21 of the old trains at a fixed price of €5,000.
In recent years the entire 13,3km stretch of the rail ski run has been renovated from the ground up with its 20 stops for 634 million euros. And here’s the icing on the cake: a total of 31 new cars of the so-called “generation 15” cost 122 million euros. Five are now on the line: whoever who want can still both types of cars preferably as a passenger. The new ones are blue the old orange.
Old ground with new technology
The new wagons are unchanged in their external dimensions. Length, width and height are determined by the dimensions of the railway stations. This is why the new cars with a length of 24 m and a width of 2.2 m are also available.
The new trains are still children of modern times. The vehicles bring back the energy generated during braking to the driving circuit. “According to our calculations the future suspension train will consume an average of two kilowatt hours of electricity on the way from one station to the next”, explains Markus Schauerte, who was part of the project at the Vossloh-Kiepe general contractor from the very beginning of the train project.
“When braking recovers a kilowatt hour back and feeds them into the network.” At the current price of electricity with the baby blue monorail from stop to stop costs only 25, instead of 50 cents for the drive energy costs.
Cycle times of 2 minutes guarantee
And the engine output is increased to ensure the even shorter cycle times of 2 minutes. In The current GTW 1972 cars the four DC motors on the other side are each 50 kilowatts. With its four four-phase three-phase asynchronous motors, Generation 15 has a power output of 60 kilowatts each. These can accelerate the vehicle up to 65 km/h.
The enlarged force is uses only for acceleration, because more than 60 km/h is not allowed in the monorail anyway. But the average acceleration is tripled by this performance increase. The stopping power is adapted in these fast accelerating vehicles according to. A spur bevel gear is used instead of a worm gear.
Elephant Tuffi jumped into the river
All important topic in the new cars is however the weight.The supporting framework and the steel structure in the historic car hall in Vohwinkel, Home Depot and workshop, set the limits. A maximum of 25,678 tons may be carried by an empty track in the suspension.
The ultra light body weighs just 5.4 tons along with front and rear cabin. By comparison, the four bogies of a train make it almost 12.5 tons. The hollow extrusions for the wagon body are precisely dimensioned on the basis of the expected load and without additional use of the materials associated with the so-called friction stir welding. Thereby, the aluminum is heated by a rotating tool along the connection in such a way that the individual profiles are permanently connected.
The construction can withstand at least 5,000 kN per square meter at full load, which is computationally 6.6 people weighing each 75 kilograms per square meter and fully occupied seats.
In fully occupancy such a vehicle weight almost 40 tons. Then, 45 passengers are hovering over the Wupper. And it should not be the same as the poor young elephant Tuffi, which jumped out of the hovering cable railway in the Wupper during a circus promotional trip on July 21 of 1950 ,and thankfully came with a scratch on the bottom of it.
The railway is being built in Europe
It is also amazing how the wagons are created on the trainline. Who believes that arise completely in a hall at Vossloh Kiepe, mistaken. Companies across Europe are involved in the special order. The suspension train is unique. The train transport companies cannot resort to serial models.
The designers of the Transrapid magnetic levitation train, for example, have now taken over the planning of the car body, which are now developing in Munich under the umbrella of the company Prose after the transrapid has been removed. They are supported by the Swiss design office Design & Technique based in Altenrhein on Lake Constance.
The car body is made of lightweight aluminum extrusion profiles at the Austrian specialist Hammerer Aluminum Industries in Ranshofen. The front and rear cabin are made of a fiberglass composite material and are manufactured in the lightweight construction center in Saxony, where parts for Airbus aircraft are also produced. The boogies each suspension run has four is designed by Prose’s Swiss team in trains. The drive comes from rail systems Austria, headquartered in Wiener Neudorf, Germany, which is supplied by the rail specialist ZF. The Viennese air-conditioning experts based on Vossloh Kiepe Austria control the air treatment plant. And, of course, Vossloh Kiepe in Düsseldorf is developing and supplying the electrical equipment.
We have selected only the best suppliers from all over Europe”, says project manager Saeed by Vossloh Kiepe. “European cooperation is very motivating; here is a kind of Airbus feeling.”
And where are trains now assembled? In Spain. At Vossloh rail vehicles in Valencia. The Spanish experts produce not only the sophisticated bogies, but assume the whole expansion of the Carbodies. To this end the car bodies from Ranshofen, which are in the carcass, are delivered to Valencia as well as all other components from all over Europe. The “wedding” of the finished car body and the bogies will only take place in Wuppertal, Germany, where the vehicles are hanged to the railroad at the western end of the route in Vohwinkel.