Saft has been awarded a multi-million euro, eight-year contract by CRRC to deliver the onboard backup battery systems for the High Capacity Metro Trains (HCMT) project to reduce congestion and travel times for commuters in Melbourne, Australia. The Saft MRX nickel battery systems will ensure the smooth operation of 65 new trains by providing up to two hours of backup power for vital operational, safety and passenger comfort functions should a train lose its main power supply.
Melbourne is Australia’s fastest growing city with its population predicted to reach five million by 2021 and eight million by 2050. To alleviate its growing traffic congestion, Melbourne is creating a 'metro-style' network with frequent, high-capacity 'turn up and go' services. This includes the introduction of 65 new seven-car trains, 160 meters in length and capable of carrying up to 1,100 people.
The HCMT project is a public private partnership between the Victorian Government and the Evolution Rail consortium, consisting of Downer, CRRC and Plenary.
Gary Pan, purchasing engineer at CRRC said, “The HCMT trains are based on our next-generation A-Type platform currently operating on Hong Kong’s MTR rail network. They will rival any other train fleet in the world in terms of quality, design, safety and capability. That means no-compromise on any of the subsidiary systems. Which is why we have specified Saft MRX batteries to provide the onboard backup power.”
Three Saft MRX battery systems will be fitted to each train. If the main power fails they will maintain operation of passenger safety, communication and comfort systems for up to two hours while still retaining enough capacity to raise the train pantograph. Should a train be stored in a depot the batteries will enable ‘sleep mode’ for up to two weeks to maintain the ATC (Automatic Train Control) system and ensure the train can be restored to normal operation.
Saft MRX batteries are ideally suited for this application as they are purpose-designed to deliver maximum performance, low maintenance and optimized total cost of ownership (TCO) in a compact, lightweight package. They will also ensure total reliability in the wide range of temperatures experienced in Melbourne, from -5°C to +40°C.
Saft’s MRX cells are designed and manufactured in Saft’s Bordeaux factory in France. The battery boxes are manufactured by APMI a local supplier, to support the Victorian Government’s project local content requirement. Saft is also working with APMI to develop its capability to assemble and test the battery systems against the relevant standards.
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Saft specializes in advanced technology battery solutions for industry, from the design and development to the production, customization and service provision. For 100 years, Saft’s longer-lasting batteries and systems have provided critical safety applications, back-up power and propulsion for our customers. Our innovative, safe and reliable technology delivers high performance on land, at sea, in the air and in space. Saft is powering industry and smarter cities, while providing critical back-up functionality in remote and harsh environments from the Arctic Circle to the Sahara Desert. Saft is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Total, a leading international oil and gas company and a major player in low-carbon energies.
We energize the world. www.saftbatteries.com
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