New trains rolling through Tallinn

To improve the comfort, speed and frequency of train journeys in Tallinn, at the same time reducing detrimental effects on the environment, this project will replace 40-year-old electric trains that are coming to the end of their useful economic life.

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A total of 18 electric multiple units will be procured, along with diagnostic equipment for maintenance and repairs, all contributing to an anticipated 30% fall in energy use. With greater access for passengers, with reduced mobility and more frequent services, the number of commuters is expected to increase by 21%.

Out with the old 

National authorities in Estonia have decided to replace the current stock, which despite upgrades in the past are nearing the end of their life. Furthermore, their energy efficiency is low and maintenance costs high. Between 2013 and 2017, all existing trains should be scrapped.

Elektriraudtee AS is the government-own company that provides passenger rail services on the 131.6 km electrified rail network around Tallinn. In 2008, 1.35 million train-km were travelled, with 3.28 million passengers on board. Following completion of this project, the number of passengers in 2020 is forecast to be 4.71 million.

On track to faster journeys

Elektriraudtee AS will acquire 18 environment-friendly, electric multiple units that comply with modern European requirements. The units consist of passenger carriages with traction motors incorporated within one or a number of the carriages. The units can be steered from both ends and also joined to each another, offering flexibility for peak times. Diagnostic equipment for operating and maintaining the trains will also be procured.

In total, there will be 60 railcars, and though the number of seats will not increase significantly, the frequency of travel will, by up to 62%. Time savings of between 8% and 12% will also be achieved, due mainly to faster acceleration speeds (up to 50%).

Clever system yields environmental gains

The units will use electro-dynamic braking systems where the braking energy can be reused, an improvement on the current system which uses cast iron brake shoes, emitting 76.8 tons of dust into the surrounding environment every year, including densely populated areas. The economic benefits of this are lower electric energy costs.

Furthermore, with more people attracted by the comfort, convenience, speed and frequency of the rail network, including better access for the disabled, electronic passenger information systems and wireless internet access, people should move from car and bus travel to rail, in turn leading to lower congestion and better air quality in Tallinn.

Draft date

20/09/2011