Green Transformation

Innovative freight cars

As part of the “innovative freight cars” research project initiated by the BMDV, DB Cargo and the railway freight car lessor VTG tested technologies for a quieter, more energy-efficient, smart freight car. The BMDV provided funds amounting to € 21.5 million. The project was completed in April 2019. Various innovative components were combined and installed. For instance, the effects of noise skirts, innovative brake systems, and wheel dampers were tested on selected freight car types. The results from testing and practical trials show that the innovative freight carsno. 54 use between 2% and 3% less energy. These results have also been incorporated into DB Cargo’s fleet strategy and have resulted, among other things, in the procurement of an innovative automobile transport car. There were very promising results in noise reduction, particularly where wheel-mounted noise absorbers and ring elements were concerned. However, it was also determined that the relevant products are still not sufficiently mature to make them suitable for use in real operations. For this reason, DB Cargo, together with the manufacturer – separately from the research project – has further developed the product and has now started the corresponding field testing.

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