posted on 7th Feb 2023 10:46
On 7 February 2023, Hessische Landesbahn (HLB) has opted for three two-car Mireo Plus B battery trains from Siemens Mobility for their Upper and Lower Westerwald railway pilot project (Oberwesterwaldbahn and Unterwesterwaldbahn) in Rheinland-Pfalz. Both routes in the Westerwald, with demanding gradients and long non-electrified sections, require high-performance trains. Battery-powered trains will achieve substantial CO2 savings and reduce noise levels and exhaust emissions in the region when they replace diesel trains.
The new BEMUs will operate on the Oberwesterwaldbahn (OWB) Limburg - Altenkirchen - Au - Siegen, and on the Unterwesterwaldbahn (UWB) Limburg - Montabaur - Siershahn. The OWB route is 115 km long and includes a 75km stretch without catenary. Plans call for charging the train’s batteries in Limburg and on the Au - Siegen stretch. The non-electrified section on the UWB is approximately 35 km long. This enables trains to operate back and forth without recharging. The trains will serve more than 50 stations on the two routes.
The trains are equipped with pantographs for operating under catenaries and charging batteries, and with batteries for operating on non-electrified routes. When operating in battery mode, the range of the Mireo Plus B on topographically challenging routes is around 80 km without recharging. Silicon carbide technology used in the Mireo Plus B contributes to significant energy savings. The trains will offer 126 seats and standing room for 156 passengers, and will have three entrance doors on each sidewall.
The trains are scheduled to start passenger service by the end of 2025.