Siemens embarks its first regional multiple-unit train for Russia

Posted: 2 March 2012 | | No comments yet

The first of 38 vehicles departs from the Island of Ruegen by railway ferry…


At the Sassnitz ferry port on the German Island of Ruegen, Siemens today embarked the first of 38 Desiro RUS regional multiple-unit trains bound for Russia. The “Petersburg” rail-way ferry is now shipping the five-unit train via the Baltic Sea to the seaport of Ust-Luga in Russia. From Ust-Luga, it will continue its journey by rail to a Russian Railways (RZD) depot in the Saint Petersburg area. The entire transport route from the Siemens factory in Krefeld to Saint Petersburg is around 2,700 kilometers long and will take about four weeks. Arrival is scheduled for March 7. Commissioning will commence thereafter, and the first test and homologation trips will take place in April. The passenger service of the first Desiro RUS trains will start in Kazan and Sochi in 2013. During the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi in February 2014 the trains will transport the athletes and spectators to the various sporting venues in the mountain area quickly and safely.

Production of the Desiro RUS in the Siemens factory in Krefeld, Germany, started in April 2011. Nine months later, at the end of January 2012, Siemens and RZD signed the release for the shipment of the first train. The giant with a huge weight of 270 tons commenced its journey in mid-February: first as single cars – distributed between five heavy transport trucks – from the Siemens factory to the Krefeld Rhine port over three consecutive nights. At the port, cranes lifted the rail cars onto an inland water vessel. The journey continued via the River Rhine and the Amsterdam-Rhine canal to Amsterdam, where the cargo was transshipped onto a coaster. Via the North and Baltic Seas, this ship took the Desiro RUS to the Sassnitz ferry port on the Island of Ruegen. Sassnitz is Germany’s largest ferry port and the only one in Europe with Russian 1,520 millimeter broad gauge tracks. At the port the rail cars were, for the very first time, placed onto the tracks they were built for and coupled together to form a trainset.

Today a locomotive pushed the train into the cargo compartment of the “Petersburg” railway ferry equipped with the Russian broad gauge. About one week from now RZD will be able to welcome its first Desiro RUS, which they call “Lastotschka” (the Russian word for “swallow”), to a depot in the Saint Petersburg area. Siemens also performs the maintenance of the eight high speed trains (“peregrine falcons”) at this depot, which were likewise delivered to the railway company by ferry via Sassnitz in the period from 2008 to 2009. From its base at the depot the new Desiro RUS regional train will commence its test and homologation trips in April and travel e.g. to the test center in Shcherbinka in the Moscow area.

Siemens is the most successful rail technology provider in Russia

“With the embarkation of the first Desiro RUS we have passed another major milestone for this contract”, commented Hans-Jörg Grundmann, CEO of the Siemens Rail Systems Division. “By 2013 we will deliver another 37 complete trains of this type. From 2013 we will manufacture another 16 vehicles on the basis of increasing localization e.g. in Yekaterinburg, where we are currently investing around € 200 million in the construction of a factory. This will strengthen our position in this country as the most successful non-Russian railway technology provider.” In addition to manufacture, Siemens will perform the maintenance of this rolling stock for RZD over a period of 40 years. In total, the manufacturing and maintenance contracts are worth almost € 1.1 billion.

Background: The Desiro RUS travels by water along the River Rhine and crosses the North and Baltic seas

Due to the train’s huge dimensions and the Russian 1,520 millimeter broad gauge, road or rail transport to Russia would have been impossible. The rail cars weigh up to 60 tons, are 26 meters long, three and a half meters wide and nearly five meters high – and thus half a meter wider and higher than e.g. the sister train of the Desiro RUS which is in revenue service in Germany. On their way to the Krefeld Rhine port, the heavy transport trucks had to cross below a tram catenary – which had to be disconnected from the power supply and raised in order to enable this special transport after the normal tram operating hours at about midnight.

The Desiro RUS consumes about 30 percent less energy than the regional trains which are currently in revenue service in Russia. The rolling stock thus belongs to the Siemens environmental portfolio with which the company achieved revenue of around € 30 billion in fiscal 2011. Siemens is thus one of the world’s leading providers of eco-friendly technology. Products and solutions provided by Siemens have enabled customers to save almost 320 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) during the same period. These emissions correspond to the annual carbon footprint produced by the cities of Berlin, Delhi, Hong Kong, Istanbul, London, New York, Singapore and Tokyo combined.

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