CAF selects Maxwell Technologies for catenary-free rail modules

Written by Carolina Worrell, Senior Editor
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Maxwell Technologies, a leading developer and manufacturer of ultracapacitor-based energy storage and power delivery products, announced Oct. 22, 2015 that its ultracapacitors have been selected by CAF Power & Automation, a global manufacturer of railway vehicles and equipment, as a standard component of the energy-storage system ACR (Rapid Charge Accumulator) used to power light-rail cars. Among the latest projects, CAF’s ACR energy-storage system will be used on the first 100% catenary-free light rail line currently under construction in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, and in new tramways for an existing rail line in Tallinn (Estonia) for energy-saving purposes.

Capacitive energy-storage technology delivers high-density power supply to a number of rail-transportation applications. Maxwell ultracapacitors are especially well suited for onboard commuter rolling modalities, such as CAF’s electric light-rail trams, because of the seamless ability to capture and discharge power rapidly, the company says. CAF chose to work with Maxwell to ensure that its ACR delivered instant power and energy recuperation from frequent braking, without requiring unsightly overhead electrical wiring. As part of CAF’s ACR system, Maxwell’s ultracapacitors are expected to provide up to 30% savings in energy consumption.

“Globally, new innovative energy technologies are in great demand, and we don’t expect that trend to slow down over the next few years,” said Harkaitz Ibaiondo, Sales & Marketing Director of CAF. “Our ACR energy-storage system is a key component of the transportation solutions implemented to satisfy this demand. Maxwell’s ultracapacitors were a perfect option for energy recuperation and fast power delivery within our product. Their expertise and leadership in capacitive energy storage is exactly what we needed.”

“Ultracapacitors have drawn great interest from leading rail transportation companies worldwide,” said Dr. Franz Fink, President and CEO for Maxwell. “The demand for alternative energy storage and power delivery makes Maxwell’s ultracapacitors a perfect fit for CAF. This is further validation of our ability to deliver technology that improves both energy efficiency and carbon emissions.”

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