Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I brought up polishing practices as a track/vehicle-connectedness issue, e.g.: running polishing trains daily is a higher infrastructure cost, but results in less wheel wear and better ride comfort, while the intent of running freight trains not only results in higher construction costs (smaller maximum grade -> more tunnels/bridges) but more track wear and worse running comfort.

Regarding your points on polishing, I see multiple issues mixing here.

High axle loads, lower speeds and freight are a characteristic of the ICE-1, ICE-2 trains and the older lines. The ICE-3 and the Cologne-Frankfurt line don't differ from the TGV system in these respects (where the ditching of mixed traffic was definitely the abandonment of a bad idea).

Regarding bogies, it is true that the somewhat higher axle density (ICE-3: 32, most TGVs: 26 for the same 200 m length) and more uneven distribution of that mean higher track stress and wear, but it is not so significant compared to the above problems.

The "could be removed more easily" you read of could mean multiple things.

Either it was a reference not to the ICE-3 but the earlier generations, and not only to bogie maintenance but car maintenance (say one car is vandalised, it is removed while the rest of the train can get back into service) and operational rearrangement. The latter differs from the fixed-composition TGV concept and parallels the Shinkansen concept: the ICE-1 can run with 10 to 14 middle cars, the ICE-2 can even be arranged into an ICE-1-like "long train" by dropping driving trailers.

If it was a reference to the ICE-3 and removal of bogies, then the main issue is that the ICE-3 has distributed traction. Both Siemens (DB series 425) and ex-ADtranz-Bombardier (DB series 423) has motorised Jacobs bogies. The problem is that currently, there is no high-speed-suited motorised Jacobs bogie in service anywhere in the world - not in France, not in Japan (where all Shinkansens have distributed traction, including the prototypes for 360 km/h trains). So far there is only the two test bogies in the two cars of Alstom's mothballed partial AGV prototype "Elisa", though the technology shall be revived this year, in the "Pégase" prototype and in the new attempt to break the world speed record with TGV POS 4403.

I also note that Jacobs vs. standard bogies aren't relevant to the question of interoperability standards, they were relevant in the failed pursuit of an all-European high-speed train (one unifying French, German, Italian and Spanish technology) that would have cut costs by economies of scale.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Wed Jan 31st, 2007 at 07:13:17 AM EST
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