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A new GCF’s sub-station for Guastalla - Reggio Emilia

Guastalla sub-station: the equipment that feeds the railway

Construction sites working at full pace for the electrification of the lines in Reggio Emilia

Works at full pace in Guastalla, for the construction of the sub-station that will feed the direct railway in Reggio Emilia. GCF’s site, which foresees also the electrification of the three lines in Emilia Region, from Ciano, Sassuolo and Guastalla, is part of the plan according to which the Emilia Romagna Region intends to equip itself with more modern, safer and competitive railway lines. And also more sustainable.

The goal? Make the public railway service a better alternative compared to private transportation with benefits for the air and the environment. GCF is working on the main axis of the “ecological transition” by providing electrification works on the three reginal lines of Reggio Emilia.

The investment plan has been remarkable, which was implemented after fully restoring the trains fleet in two years; now Emilia Region owns the title of region with the newest rolling stock in Europe. The Emilia Romagna Region and FER, single company that manages the regional railway, developed the new regional program that was defined by the media as “revolutionary”, and foresees an investment of 325 millions by 2025 in infrastructural works, such to render the railway transport an efficient, safe and ecological alternative compared to private transportation.

Guastalla-Reggio at the junction with Mediopadana high-speed line

“In line with the Accord for labour and climate - recently explained the president of the Region Stefano Bonaccini to the media - we are investing to promote the use of public transportation for our daily transfers, whether for work, study or leisure time. After the railway tender, which led to the full renewal of the fleet, started in July 2019 with the substitution of 86 trains of new generation for an investment of over 750 million Euros, we are now working on the infrastructure of the regional railway network with construction sites already open or ready to begin the works”.
The Plan consists of three main topics: safety consisting of works to eliminate railway crossings and create the so called “urban mending” on the entire Scmt network (train’s travel control system), which foresees the grounding of railway lines in the chief towns of Bologna and Ferrara and lastly, the electrification of numerous railway sections.

GCF’s electrification works

Guastalla sub-station: the recovered building

“On the electrification axis – explains Antonio Rauso, Site Director of Generale Costruzioni Ferroviarie – GCF’s activity includes Reggio Emilia-Guastalla, the line that intersects the ultra-modern high-speed station Mediopadana in Reggio, Reggio Emilia-Sassuolo station and Reggio Emilia-Ciano station. The first site, Reggio Emilia - Guastalla, has already equipped 28 km of single-track line with steel poles of LSU type and aluminium brackets of Omnia type. The installation of a contact line of 440 square mm section is foreseen for this line”.

While Reggio-Ciano will be fed with a single supply, the other two lines will have a double supply provided in Reggio-Emilia, by a TE cabin servicing each section, in addition to an electric sub-station in Sassuolo and Guastalla. “In practice – explains Alessandro Severi, GCF’s technical Director – it consists of a series of equipment that takes the electric energy from the provider – in this case ENEL – and transforms it from 15kV in alternating current to 3kV in direct current and lastly, through the three-poles’ outlet with first raw circuit breakers, it introduces it in the contact line to supply the electric trains”.

The complex system – panel for medium-voltage distribution, the transformation cabin with two groups of 3.6 mW, the rectifiers, the filter cells and the transformers compartment being the main components – is housed inside an old, restored building on the side of the railway, located near Guastalla station, which had been abandoned for over 20 years. “GCF project – underscores Director Rauso focused on the recovery of the building and use of the old FER’s building that was once used by Ferrovie Padane as workshop for the maintenance of trains. A sustainable choice that avoided the construction of new buildings and that seemed to us to be in line with the sustainability goals underlying the Region’s plan”.

How the Sub-station works

How the Sub-station works