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Irish Rail to receive new electric and battery-electric rail cars from Alstom

Posted: 13 December 2021 | | No comments yet

Alstom has signed a 10-year framework agreement with Irish Rail to provide up to 750 new sustainable X’trapolis commuter rail cars for Ireland’s Dublin Area Rapid Transit network.

Alstom to supply the most sustainable fleet of trains in Irish transport

Credit: Alstom

On 13 December 2021, Alstom’s Chairman and CEO, Henri Poupart-Lafarge, the Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan T.D., and Chief Executive of the National Transport Authority, Anne Graham, joined Irish Rail’s Chief Executive, Jim Meade, at the operator’s Inchicore Works to formally sign the contract, which will see the replacement and expansion of the Dublin Area Rapid Transit (DART) fleet as part of the DART+ Programme funded by the National Transport Authority under the National Development Plan 2021 to 2030.

The framework agreement includes a firm initial order for 19 five-car trains, valued at €270 million, including a 15-year support services contract.

Nick Crossfield, Alstom’s Managing Director, UK & Ireland, said: “Alstom is delighted to have been selected to deliver the new DART+ fleet. Ireland is a very important market to us, and the new electric and battery-electric X’trapolis fleet is a big step for making rail even more sustainable while transforming the passenger experience in the Greater Dublin area and beyond. This order reinforces Alstom’s position as the world’s leading innovator and supplier of green mobility technologies.”

Jim Meade, Chief Executive of Irish Rail, added: “This framework agreement with Alstom will be central to a transformative change for our services and for our customers, and will help us in Iarnród Éireann to achieve our ambition of being the backbone of Ireland’s sustainable transport network. We’re excited to work with Alstom to deliver expanded services in the Greater Dublin Area, enhanced facilities for our customers, and a cleaner environment for our country.”

Due to enter service in 2025, the initial order is for six five-car electric multiple units (EMUs) and 13 five-car battery-electric multiple units (BEMUs), capable of journeys beyond 80km outside the electrified network under battery power, and the first modern battery fleet in Ireland. Energy stored in the battery system will be replenished via fast charging stations at chosen terminus locations and by recovering braking energy while the train is in motion. This capability will deliver emission-free connectivity and capacity ahead of electrification of the full DART+ network. Alstom will continue to support the DART fleet for a period of 15 years, providing technical support and spares, and deploying its HealthHubTM and TrainScanner technologies for predictive maintenance.

Alstom to supply the most sustainable fleet of trains in Irish transport

Credit: Alstom

Alstom’s modular X’trapolis commuter train platform will be specially tailored for the DART+ programme. Each 82m-long train will have space for 550 passengers with wide, walk-though gangways, low-level floor, and an automatic retractable step to maximise accessibility. Other features include dedicated cycle and family areas, enhanced passenger features such as charging facilities for mobile phones, e-bikes and e-scooters; and advanced CCTV systems throughout the train, to enhance safety and security for customers and employees.

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