The world’s first train that operates by itself in rail traffic got presented in Hamburg

Mayor of Hamburg Dr. Peter Tschentscher, CEO of Deutsche Bahn Dr. Richard Lutz and CEO of Siemens AG and Dr. Roland Busch officially presented the world’s first train that operates by itself in rail traffic.

The three parties have invested a total of €60 million in the digital S-Bahn Hamburg.

The train is fully automated and controlled by digital technology, while the driver remains on the train only to supervise the journey with passengers on board. All the other parts of the journey such as shunting and turning the train around is done without on-board personnel.

The whole aim of the project is to offer passengers a significantly expanded, more reliable and therefore improved service and to make rail transport attractive to ever-larger numbers of people.

Dr. Richard Lutz, CEO of Deutsche Bahn stated: “We are making rail transport more intelligent. Trains drive the perfect timetable automatically, accurate to the second and energy-optimized. With our technology, our customers can transport up to 30 percent more passengers, significantly improve punctuality and save more than 30 percent energy. The digital S-Bahn Hamburg marks a world premiere. The new technology has already been officially approved and, since it features open interfaces, can immediately be used by operators worldwide for all types of trains”.

Dr. Roland Busch, CEO of Siemens AG said: “The digital S-Bahn had its premiere run at the opening of the Intelligent Transport Systems World Congress (ITS) in Hamburg. During the congress, four digital S-Bahn trains will operate automatically along the 23-kilometer section of S-Bahn Line 21 between the Berliner Tor and Bergedorf/Aumühle stations”.

The ultimate plan is to digitalize Hamburg’s S-Bahn entire system by the end of 2030.


Photo credit:Thanos Pal/Unsplash