Railway electrification in Great Britain - conductor rail systems

Railway electrification in Great Britain - conductor rail systems

Railway electrification in Great Britain - Conductor Rail describes the different third and fourth rail systems used and their history.

History

Railway electrification as a means of traction emerged at the end of the nineteenth century. It offered several benefits over the then predominate steam traction, particularly in respect of its quick acceleration (ideal for urban (metro) and suburban (commuter) services) and power (ideal for heavy freight trains through mountainous/hilly sections). Many such systems emerged in the first twenty years of the twentieth century.

ystems

* 110 volt DC top-contact third rail, used by Volk's Electric Railway.
* 525 volt DC top-contact third Rail, used by the Liverpool Overhead Railway. The word "overhead" refers to the fact that the railway was carried mainly on iron viaducts.
* 600-650 volt DC top-contact third and fourth rail, used by:
** Most London Underground lines.
** London and North Western Railway for London area suburban lines. British Railways converted former LNWR lines to 3-rail.
** Mersey Railway, later converted to 3-rail.
* 600-660 volt DC top-contact third rail, used by:
** North Eastern Railway for Tyneside suburban services.
** Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway for Liverpool area suburban services.
** London and South Western Railway and Southern Railway.
* 750 volt DC top-contact third rail, used by British Railways. Most former 600-660 volt systems inherited from BR's constituents were uprated to 750 volts.
* 750 volt DC bottom-contact third rail, used by Docklands Light Railway.
* 1,200 volt DC side-contact third rail, used by Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway for Manchester to Bury line. Converted in 1991 to 750 volt DC overhead for Manchester Metrolink.

ee also

* Railway electrification system
* Railway electric traction
* List of current systems for electric rail traction
* Third Rail
* Suburban electrification of the London, Midland and Scottish Railway
* Railway electrification in Great Britain
* LNWR electric units
* LYR electric units

References

External links

* [http://www.semgonline.com/ Southern E-mail Group]
* [http://www.southernelectric.org.uk/ Southern Electric Group]
* [http://www.emus.co.uk/ Suburban Electric Railway Association]

Further reading

*
*


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