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Compact battery charger for all rail applications


At the upcoming trade show InnoTrans in Berlin, ABB will launch BORDLINE BC, a next generation battery charger based on silicon carbide (SiC) power semiconductors for use in all rail applications. The charger is compatible with all standard train battery voltages and has a footprint of about 360 x 220mm – the size of a shoebox. According to the company, it is approximately 10 times smaller and has a weight reduction of 80 per cent compared to previous generations. The new device has a power density of 1kW per litre and per kilogram, which is an improvement from previous generations by a factor of 15.

The charger employs the company’s modular platform design while incorporating SiC technology for the first time. SiC power semiconductor technology enables a power density and performance not possible with conventional silicon (Si) power semiconductors due to its conductivity characteristics. According to the company, mastering SiC technology translates into dramatically reduced size, weight, cooling requirements and increased system efficiency.

The new high-speed trains by Stadler operated by the Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) on the new transalpine Gotthard base tunnel route between Zurich and Milan will be equipped with this technology.

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