Alstom to upgrade ERTMS Level 2 on Dutch track sections
ProRail commissioned Alstom to upgrade two sections of track, so that train drivers can gain experience with ERTMS Level 2, Baseline 3. The sections in question are the Hanzelijn and the railway line Amsterdam-Utrecht.
The sections of track will be upgraded by the end of 2023, after which railway operator NS will start driving trains to gain experience with the new system.
Getting used to ERTMS driving
In the national roll-out of the European train control system, gaining experience with driving with ERTMS is an important step. The intention is for the first seven sections to be ready in 2030. By then, enough train drivers must have gained experience to be able to drive with it.
Some sections of the Dutch railway network are already equipped with ERTMS, such as the Betuwe Route, the Hanzelijn and HSL-South. But these sections do not yet have the version chosen by the Netherlands for the national roll-out.
Adapting to baseline 3
For this reason, Alstom will upgrade the ERTMS version of the Hanzelijn and the Amsterdam branch line, explains project manager Philippe Frequin, who prepared the order to Alstom. “The ERTMS systems currently in place are still an old level 2 version, namely baseline 2, while the current level 2 standard is now baseline 3. That will also be installed on all new ERTMS sections. So drivers will have to learn to drive with that version. What we are going to do now is adapt the baseline 2 infrastructure so that it resembles baseline 3 as much as possible for train drivers.”