The 594 diesel railcar series for mid-distance originally comprised 23 two-vehicle units built by the CAF-Bombardier consortium. The features of the series from the late 1990s made them class leaders for their rolling stock range. They are modular vehicles that enable almost total disassembly for repair and maintenance, are hugely reliable thanks to the redundancy feature in nearly all equipment, and incorporate the also modular-based flexliner technology meaning changes can be made without losing initial features.
These trains offer great comfort on the journey. The passenger lounge is diaphanous, with ergonomic seats with fireproof upholstery, air conditioning, tinted windows, ambient music and PA.
It has reserved spaces for people with reduced mobility and has meeting tables in all lounges.
The engine carriage has a standard class and a multipurpose area that can be used by people with reduced mobility or for seats, since it incorporates two fold down seats. Engine carriage II also has a standard class.
The double seats are located on both sides of the central aisle, some with fixed trays and others with folding trays. The seats are reclining and have folding armrests.
The toilet, located in the access lounge of each carriage.
Visual information is made available by display monitors in each carriage. Those located on the outside show the destination, whilst those located on the inside announce the intermediate stops.
The 594 series of railcars consists of 23 compositions of two vehicles, which were contracted and delivered in two different periods. The first order was for 16 trains with delivery being completed in 1998, while the second was 7 trains whose construction was completed in 2001.
The first trains in the series began providing service in Galicia in 1997, along the A Coruña – Santiago – Vigo corridor; in 1998 in Andalusia, and the Madrid-Salamanca route was incorporated in 1999. These railcars have a great acceleration power (0.8m/s2) and have managed to reduce travel times by an average of 20 percent on some routes (Medina-Salamanca and Salamanca-Palencia).
Two key advantages set the 594 series apart: its availability and its reliability. Availability is ensured by the concept of modularity with which these vehicles are built. This enables almost all of the constituent elements of the train to be disassembled for maintenance, so that the modules can be easily disassembled and replaced with others. Reliability is ensured through the redundancy of almost all equipment.
A third feature of this series is the incorporation of "flexliner" technology, which has already been tested on German diesel-driven IC3 trains. This technology is based on modularity, meaning that technological modifications and improvements can be introduced without losing the basic characteristics of the initial conception.
These compositions have been built by the CAF – Bombardier consortium (formerly Adtranz) and there are two subseries: the one hundred (594.1) and the two hundred (594.2).
The main features of the 100 subseries is the tilting of its bodies using the CAF "Intelligent Integral Tilt System". This system consists of a mechanism capable of achieving an optimal inclination of the bodies with respect to the bogies on bends, managing to reduce the effect of centrifugal force. As such, it is possible to increase the speed on bends while also increasing passenger comfort.
The 200 subseries incorporates BRAVA (Self-propelled Variable Width Rolling Bogie) bogies, which make it possible to change between UIC gauge and national gauge tracks. This change is made without stopping the train at any time and at a speed of 15 km/h. Train drivers have a device to follow the proper functioning of these bogies by means of a console installed in each cab to control the temperature of the hollow tree and the bearings. If they heat to over 110 degrees, the train will be stopped by the driver and, if not, an emergency stop will be made.
The train unit consists of two engine carriages. These can be grouped together to form compositions of five units, i.e. ten carriages. The train can be driven from a single driving position, regardless of whether it comprises one or several units.
The structure of the 594 carriage is self-supporting, with tilting and lightweight aluminium alloy bodies. It has an end carriage system with an inflatable contour and a rotary desk that allows free passage between the units once the coupling has been made. The main equipment of the vehicle has been installed under the chassis.
All the assemblies that make up the vehicle have a modular design, so that they can be quickly removed and replaced.
They are coupled using automatic Scharfenberg couplings on the side of the cabin with an electric, mechanical and pneumatic system, and semi-permanent coupling between the two engine carriages.
Two double, electric sliding exterior doors, one on each side of the carriage, give an opening of 1,300 mm. for passenger access. There are two other doors per carriage, on each side, for service access to the driver's cab.
A single platform for each carriage provides access. Two outer doors, on each side, provide access to the platform, while two inner doors provide access to the rooms. Each outer door has a pneumatically operated folding footboard, which facilitates access to platforms of different heights.
Traction and auxiliary systems
Propulsion is by four 300 kW water-cooled diesel motors, which activate the four bogies via hydraulic gearboxes.
The diesel engine is four-stroke, horizontally arranged, water-cooled, with a direct-injection system. It is turbocharged by exhaust gas compression. Turbo transmitters provide the transmission.
To minimise fuel expenditure, a lightweight aluminium alloy was chosen for the body, as well as a low consumption power unit. The minimum specific engine consumption ranges from 195 to 225 grammes per kilowatt and hour, for power between 100 and 50 percent of the nominal.
A "Micas S2" microprocessor, designed and manufactured by Bombardier, is responsible for electronic traction and braking control. In each carriage, this control is carried out when the microprocessor is connected to the electronic control systems of each of the different motorisation, transmission or braking equipment.
Power is generated by four 35 kW alternators that supply current at 380/220 V and also power the battery chargers.
Compressed air is produced by two screw compressors located in the under chassis of each carriage. Each compressor is equipped with drying equipment.
Air conditioning is produced by equipment in the ceiling that drives hot and cold air. Cold air passes through overhead tubing and is distributed from the ceiling. Hot air passes through tubes at floor level. The total cooling capacity is 64,000 kcal/h in passenger lounges and 4,500 kcal/h in driver's cabs.
Bogies and brakes
The first 16 compositions are designed to use tilting bogies, as they have been built with tilting bodies and are equipped with an electromechanical actuator and a swinging bolster. Each carriage has two double-axle bogies, with superficially tempered solid wheels, grease boxes with bearings and elastic crank guidance. The primary suspension uses coil springs, with the secondary suspension being pneumatic. The last train of the first delivery, along with the seven trains that make up the second order, left the factory with the built-in active tilt.
The brake equipment is two-pipe, electro-pneumatic control with two disks per axle. The parking brake is spring-loaded.
The service deceleration is 1.0 m/s2, and the emergency deceleration is 1.1 m/s2. In addition, two compositions have "Brava" bogies, suitable for automatic gauge change.
All the bodies in the series are designed to use tilting bogies, although only eight trains come with this tilting system factory-incorporated.
The system has memorised the entire track layout of the route the train takes, allowing the vehicle to start tilting as it enters the bend. This is how these trains are able to take bends faster than other trains, as well as providing greater passenger comfort.
Dimensions and Weights