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S-598 diesel rail car

The trains of the 598 series, consisting of 21 units received in the initial quarters of 2004 and 2005, were manufactured by CAF at its Beasain factory, and they entered service in Galicia in December 2004. Conceptually, they are based on the 594 series, although major improvements and innovations were introduced.

They are notable for their exterior look, dominated by curved lines, including a front end with an aerodynamic profile in the style of high-speed trains and a strip window along the entire train.

This train is composed of three cars, two power cars at the ends and an intermediate trailer car. It has 32 percent more capacity and increased features with respect to those of the 594 series. Since their construction, they have incorporated the Intelligent Integrated Tilting System (SIBI), which recognises the route of the line through GPS positioning, thereby causing the train to tilt according to its speed and the radius of a curve. All equipment on the train is duplicated and optimised so that a failure of any of the systems does not cause service interruption.

It is a train for use exclusively on 1668-mm gauge track, and it can reach a maximum speed of 160 km/h.



The 598 unit is built of a light-weight aluminium alloy, and it is composed of two power cars and one trailer car (M-R-M), with a smooth body on the sides and a window that covers the entire composition. This gives it the sensation of continuity that is reinforced by rubber deflectors between the vehicles to conceal the gangway bellows. The minimum composition is made up of three cars, and the maximum is three units (nine cars). They are coupled using automatic Schafenberg couplers. These couplers are concealed in the fairing of the end walls of the power cars using a device that opens and closes, consisting of a dual mechanism of sliding and articulated rods.

The most characteristic feature of these trains is their peak-shaped end wall, like that of high-speed trains, thus improving their aerodynamics, increasing their air penetration coefficient and decreasing the traction force. The end wall incorporates indicator panels and LED headlights.

It is also notable for its greater height, given that the body fairing covers the equipment located under the frame and the air conditioning and cooling equipment on top. The body structure is self-supporting, and it has been made based on large-dimensioned extruded aluminium profiles.

The energy absorption system is based on oil shock absorbers on the couplers, an anti-overriding system on the cars consisting of rigid buffers and honeycomb structures, both on the structure of the bodies and in the passenger lounges, which absorb deformations and minimise the consequences of a head-on impact.

The front end of the power cars has one upper headlight and two lower headlights for exterior signalling. The upper headlight has two lamps, both with the high- and low-beam functions. The bottom headlights are based on high-performance LEDs. Each one has white LEDS to perform the position light functions of the head end and red LEDS to perform the signalling functions of the tail end position. It also has destination indicators on the fronts and car number indicators on the sides.

Traction and auxiliary systems

The traction system is composed of four diesel engines, model D 2879 LUE 605, two in each power car, with a unit power of 338 kW and a total power of 1352 kW. They are four stroke engines with four valves per cylinder, manufactured by Man, with a displacement of 12,820 cubic centimetres and direct fuel injection. They are controlled by an electronic system according to multiple variables and the demand requested by the driver.

The engine's power is transferred to the motor shaft of the bogie by the hydraulic turbo transmission coupled to the reduction gear of the shaft through a Cardan joint. The engines are water-cooled, with the cooling system located on the roof. This aspect differentiates them from the rest of the diesel rail car fleet, in which the engine cooling equipment is located on the undercarriage.

The auxiliary services are separate from the traction services, given that they are powered by two 230-kW engines located on the intermediate car. Each engine feeds a 210-kVA alternator, which provides 380/220 VAC and 50 Hz to power the various pieces of auxiliary equipment.

The electric system of the auxiliary equipment is redundant through two electric generator units formed by a diesel engine plus an alternator. The system works with only one unit. The units take over for each other according to the number of operating hours.

The train has three 24-VDC batteries (nickel-cadmium) located on the undercarriage of each car. The battery of each power car starts up the two diesel engines of their respective car, and the battery of the trailer car starts up the engine of the alternator that is going to operate. The batteries are also used to power the emergency lighting and cleaning lighting.

The train has two sets if air production units located on the undercarriage of the trailer car body. It has two compressors, although during normal operation of the vehicle only one is in service.

It has a fuel tank with a capacity of 1400 litres of diesel, which gives it autonomy of approximately 1000 kilometres.

Bogies and brakes

The body of each car incorporates two bogies, so each composition has four motor bogies and two trailers. Each bogie of the power cars has one motor axle wheelset and one carrying axle wheelset. The bogie of the trailer car has two carrying axles. All axles are fitted with two, 850-mm diameter solid wheels and two, 610-mm diameter brake disks. Each bogie weighs approximately 9000 kilograms.

There is a primary suspension and a secondary suspension. The primary suspension elastically joins the journal boxes to the bogie frame such that it transmits both the vertical loads (through two packages of vertical coaxial springs) and guided transversal forces and pulling forces between the end of the wheelset and the rest of the bogie. The secondary suspension is pneumatic due to the presence of two pneumatic springs (air bags), one located on each side of the bogie between the cross bearer and the bolster beam.

Each bogie includes two sanders, a pneumatic installation for the secondary suspension, a pneumatic installation for the brake, electrical connections for anti-slip sensors, the ASFA sensor and earth connections. The activation mechanisms of the tilting system are installed between the primary suspension and the secondary suspension. Active yaw dampers are also installed on each bogie, which only come into operation at 130 km/h or above.

The unit can be braked by the service brake, which uses the hydro-dynamic brake, or by the pneumatic brake (compressed air and automatic); or by a combination of both brakes. The braking distance at 160 km/h is approximately 1100 metres. There is also an emergency brake, which substitutes the electro-pneumatic control system in the event of a failure, and a parking brake for immobilising the vehicle, which is spring-loaded.

Braking always initiates using the hydro-dynamic brake capacity. When this brake is not sufficient, it is complemented by the pneumatic brake. The train also has anti-slip and anti-slide systems on all axles.

Tilting system

These rail cars are equipped with the Intelligent Integrated Tilting System (SIBI), a system based on so-called active tilting. This type of predictive movement consists in prior knowledge of the route, which is recorded in the train's computer systems, and in transmission of the train's position through GPS. Active tilting takes place according to this information regarding the train's location, and the train tilts at all times, as required according to its speed and the radius of a curve, even before entering a curve. In any event, the driver can activate or deactivate the system using a button located on the driver's desk.

The SIBI acts at just the right time, thereby substantially increasing passenger comfort by providing optimum inclination of the train's body according to the geometry of the track and the running conditions in application dynamic laws of comfort.

The SIBI allows the rail cars of the 598 series to travel at speed type D, by increasing the speed at which they can travel on curves, with the maximum speed transmitted to the driver through a screen on the driver's desk. As it occurs with tilting TDRs, if the SIBI ceases to work, the train goes to speed B, and if tilting is not operational, it goes to speed type A.

Technical Specifications

  • Minimum composition: M-R-M.
  • Multiple composition: 3 units with 9 cars.
  • Track gauge: 1668 mm.
  • Doors per side: 3.
  • Body structure: Aluminium.
  • Maximum speed (km/h): 160 km/h.
  • Seating capacity per train unit: 188 seated + 1 PRM.
  • Diesel traction engines: 4.
  • Total traction power: 1352 kW.
  • Power per engine: 338 kW.
  • Auxiliary engines: 2.
  • Auxiliary power: 360 kW.
  • Starting tractive effort: 119 kN.
  • Average acceleration (0-40 km/h) : 0.48 m/s2.
  • Maximum deceleration, service brake: 0.96 m/s2.
  • Maximum deceleration, emergency brake: 0.96 m/s2.
  • Inclining bodies: Active tilting.
  • New wheel diameter: 850 mm.
  • Builder: CAF.

Weights and Dimensions

  • Total train length: 75,930 mm.
  • Power car length: 25,425 mm.
  • Trailer car length: 23,480 mm.
  • Wheelbase of the power car body: 17,734 mm.
  • Wheelbase of the trailer car body: 18,000 mm.
  • Bogie wheelbase: 2500 mm.
  • Width of the body: 2940 mm.
  • Height: 4170 mm.
  • Train weight: 151.8 tonnes.
  • Weight of the power car: 54 tonnes.
  • Weight of the trailer car: 43.8 tonnes.
  • Load per axle: 12.6 tonnes.

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