The expansion of FERROVIENORD S.p.A.'s railway network, the increase of more than the 30% of railway services and the increase of the specific power of the new fleet, have led to a significant growth of energy consumption. However, the Company dedicates great commitment and determination to improve its own energy efficiency.
Among the objectives to be pursued in the short and medium term:
1. the development of railway traffic, compatibly with the environment;
2. an energy traction cost which is competitive for the railway Companies that access the network;
3. the reduction of the systems' energy consumption and of their maintenance costs;
4. the recourse to the energy market through competitive tenders, so to appraise the railway's daily absorption profile and rationalise the supply points;
5. the use of renewable sources.
To achieve the established energy efficiency goals, FERROVIENORD S.p.A. has already undertaken several initiatives, some of which are summarized below.
THE PROTOTYPE FOR ENERGY OF BRAKE ENERGY RECYCLING:
FERROVIENORD S.p.A. is developing together with Politecnico di Milano an energy recovery system based on the "super-capacitors" technology. The aim is to provide a reversible technology system to recycle the trains' brake energy to meet the stations' needs. Currently, the prototype is designed on a peak power of 50kW and a continuous power of 10kW.
The basic principle of this operation is that of the electrostatic storage, which allows to accumulate high power peaks in short intervals so to gain the following advantages:
- a brake energy recover in a very short interval;
- a life cycle of approximately 2.000.000 full cycles;
- a very fast charging cycle, combined to a slow discharge with numerous benefits.
The potential savings amount to the following figures:
- on the FERROVIENORD S.p.A. network the recycling energy will be approximately of 12 GWh / year, with a reduction of CO2 production of 52,000 tons / year;
- if the system was applied to the entire national network, savings would even reach 540 GWh / year, with a CO2 reduction of 2,340,000 tons / year.
With this innovative project, FERROVIENORD S.p.A. proves high technological and managerial competence in the railway infrastructure field, together with a strong awareness for environmental issues.
THE ADOPTION OF LED TECHNOLOGY:
The fluorescence lights in stations, along platforms and inside other underpasses are replaced with LED technology lights, passing from a power consumption of 40-70W to that of 36W. The most significant improvement, however, is that of lamps duration , which passes from 12,000 to 50,000 hours, reducing both costs and dispersion. This means a reduction of the 50% of consumption costs and of 75% of maintenance costs.
SELF-ADJUSTING RESISTORS FOR SWITCHES:
The heating of deflectors in new installations, is realized thanks to heating cables provided of thermostatic temperature control. This technology allows a greater heating efficiency and the resistance increases with temperature, reducing in this way the current drawn and consequently its consumption. This leads to a reduction of the of consumption 40% in 15 minutes (about 8Kw / switch).
A photovoltaic system of about 3kW peak is active from many years. It is installed on the roof of Milano Bovisa station. This system feeds a part of the changing room and the station's ticket office. A pilot 5kW photovoltaic system has been activated, on the parking's gatehouse of the new rolling stock maintenance system in Camnago.
Shortly two additional photovoltaic systems will also be installed:
- on the roof of Milano Bovisa station, with a power of 3kW;
- on the roofing of the car park adjacent to Camnago station, with an output of 5 Kw.
Finally, thr works for the installation of a 45Kw photovoltaic system are in progress on the platform roof of Cesate station, with the aim of achieving full coverage of the station's requirements, except elevators. We will then proceed with the installation of photovoltaic panels on all the stations of the Bovisa-Saronno line, reaching an output within 450 and 900 kW of power.