ABB breakthrough transformer for trains improves efficiency and safety significantly

  • Highest level of efficiency reduces overall operational energy costs by up to 10 percent 
  • First of its kind oil-free dry-type traction transformer achieves new level of safety in rail transport

ABB today announced the launch of its breakthrough oil-free traction transformer, RESIBLOC® Rail, offering the highest level of safety and efficiency in rail transport, at InnoTrans, the international trade fair for rail transportation, at the Berlin Messe from September 18-21.

Such transformers feed power to essential train functions like traction, lighting, heating and ventilation, brakes, signaling and communication. Traction transformers are a critical link in the traction chain, driving train performance and operator services. ABB’s innovative oil-free RESIBLOC® technology uses epoxy insulation and glass fiber to give it unsurpassed mechanical strength. The transformer can perform under the harshest conditions and enables operators to maximize safety as well as energy- and eco-efficiency.

The oil-free transformer reaches a record efficiency rate of 97 percent. Compared to traditional transformers it can reduce overall operational energy costs by up to 10 percent.

Oil-free RESIBLOC® technology, originally developed by ABB to improve safety by eliminating the risk of fire and for use in extreme conditions, is successfully deployed in a range of applications like marine vessels, offshore oil and gas installations, underground mining and many other extreme environments. It is now for the first time being introduced for rail transport. The innovative technology also eliminates the risk of oil spills and leaks, reduces the need for maintenance and enables the safe and easy recycling of its materials.

“We are proud to introduce this innovative dry-type traction transformer which provides unprecedented safety and efficiency and helps reduce environmental impact,” said Claudio Facchin, president of ABB’s Power Grids division. “This is yet another example of ABB’s commitment to providing sustainable mobility solutions and helping to run the world without consuming the earth.”

ABB has been a pioneer in traction transformer technology since the early 1900s and has a long and proven track record for developing state-of-the-art solutions. The installed base of ABB’s traction transformers is estimated at over 40,000 units.

ABB (ABBN: SIX Swiss Ex) is a pioneering technology leader in power grids, electrification products, industrial automation and robotics and motion, serving customers in utilities, industry and transport & infrastructure globally. Continuing a history of innovation spanning more than 130 years, ABB today is writing the future of industrial digitalization with two clear value propositions: bringing electricity from any power plant to any plug and automating industries from natural resources to finished products. As title partner in ABB Formula E, the fully electric international FIA motorsport class, ABB is pushing the boundaries of e-mobility to contribute to a sustainable future. ABB operates in more than 100 countries with about 147,000 employees.


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