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Flexible medium voltage DC electric railway systems

Project description

Europe's rail system sets its sights on renewable energy

The rail sector has the potential to play a significant role in meeting increasing traffic demand, securing our energy supply and mitigating climate change by taking on a larger share of transport. Medium-voltage DC electrification for railway traction eliminates the need for access to high-voltage AC transmission lines and supports the use of renewable energy sources and energy storage. The EU-funded MVDC-ERS project will investigate many of the technologies and materials that would support such a system with a focus on efficiency, cost, reliability and security in the face of renewable energy fluctuations. The study will be rounded out with a look at the new systems' marketability.


The overall aim of MVDC-ERS is to investigate the next generation railway electrification systems, DC power electronic traction transformers and technologies for integrating renewable sources, to challenge the traditional rail approach to develop innovative and breakthrough technological concepts.

The key objectives of the project are to:
RO1: To introduce new high-efficiency topologies of power conversion systems to convert medium-voltage AC power into medium-voltage DC power with the capability of limiting the short-circuit current.
RO2: To introduce high-power density topologies of power converters for on-board DC transformers.
RO3: To investigate the impact of the forthcoming wide band-gap semiconductor devices in terms of efficiency and voltage level for the converters of the feeder stations and in terms of weight and volume for the traction converters.
RO4: To understand how the new railway electrification system should be controlled and protected when renewable power sources are integrated.
RO5: To understand how on-board energy storage can be exploited and how it can optimise the operations of the network.
RO6: To work with industrial stakeholders to investigate the marketability of the new electrification system and trains.

Call for proposal


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Sub call



Net EU contribution
€ 97 500,00
B15 2TT Birmingham
United Kingdom

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West Midlands (England) West Midlands Birmingham
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 97 500,00

Participants (1)