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With six lines and a total route length of 175 kilometers, Riyadh is planning the world’s largest subway project. Siemens is to supply the entire turnkey system for two driverless metro lines.
The order for Siemens covers subway rolling stock, as well as electrification systems and signaling technology for driverless operation. Siemens is also responsible for system integration across the 63 kilometers making up the lines.
Siemens was awarded the order by the High Commission for Urban Development (ArRiyadh Development Authority), with its share worth a total of some 1.5 billion euros (2.1 billion US-dollars), as part of a consortium with the US company Bechtel and the local construction outfits Almabani and Consolidated Contractors Company. The total order value for the consortium is approximately 7.5 billion euros (10 billion US-dollars).
Vehicles and signaling & train control technology
Siemens is equipping Lines 1 and 2 of the six-line system. The company will deliver a total of 74 Inspiro-type metro vehicles. The aluminum-bodied trains are designed to run on standard-gauge track at a top speed of 90 km/h. The 2 and 4-car trains have been designed with the region’s particular climate in mind. One such feature is a higher capacity air conditioning system, capable of delivering sufficient cooling power to ensure the wellbeing of passengers even in extreme heat. In addition, the bogies, traction drive, brakes and doors have been fitted with special seals and filters in order to reduce the ingress of sand.
The signaling and train control technology ensures that especially during rush-hour periods trains can operate at 90-second intervals, an operating frequency that enables the system to handle 21,000 passengers per hour. The two lines will be equipped with a Siemens-supplied, WLAN-based control system for driverless and conductorless train operation. Automatic train control, radio transmission and 31 electronic interlockings are also being installed.
OCC and power supply systems
Siemens is also fitting out the operations control center for both lines, from where the routes will be directed and monitored. The contract also covers training in the use of the new technology.
Siemens is also responsible for the lines’ power supply systems. The electrical energy generated by the trains when the brakes are applied will be fed back into the metro system’s power supply and thus made available for all other electrical loads. The electrical equipment will also include emergency power facilities with diesel generators and uninterruptible power supplies (UPS).
Read more about Riyadh automated metro project contracts