In August Israel Railways invited bids for the procurement of 25kV 50Hz electric locomotives, as part of its electrification program. The company recently held a conference of potential bidders in a tender for the purchase of 62 electrically powered railway locomotives, with an option for 16 more engines.
The first batch of locomotives will be delivered by the end of 2016. The electrified trains, which already operate in most advanced countries, are designed to greatly shorten travel time, reduce the number of malfunctions, and decrease air pollution. They are considered more reliable and economical.
The international companies which were represent included Siemens, Bombardier, Alstom, CNR, CSR, Hyundai, Skoda, Pesa, and CAF. In the framework of the project for converting Israel Railway's nationwide railway network to electricity, the cost of which the State Comptroller has estimated at NIS 13.7 billion, the railway company plans to buy electrified locomotives and carriages, and to convert its existing equipment.
According to the tender the electric locomotives to be supplied must be AC locomotives with a minimum power output of 5MW, which can run at a speed of at least 160km/h and are homologated by a national competent authority in accordance with applicable railway standards.
They must also have a maximum axle load of 22.5t and have the capacity to operate up to 20 hours a day and 250,000km a year.
The locomotives should be able to power up to eight double-deck coaches or ten single-deck coaches in push-pull mode. They must also be designed, manufactured and fully assembled by the bidder.