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Published 1 Feb, 2018

Investigation of railway standard for the network north of the Scandinavian-Mediterranean TEN-T CNC

Sweden’s main exports (measured in weight) come from the northern part of the country and are destined for the supply of the main industries in Central Europe with raw material. This makes a functioning railway system of high quality between Northern Scandinavia and Central Europe essential and an extension of the European TEN-T core network corridor (CNC) to the northernmost areas may be considered.

Region Örebro County, project partner of TENTacle, conducted a report on railway data for the northern part of Sweden and Norway with the same parameters and framework as the TEN-T Scandinavian-Mediterranean corridor (ScanMed corridor) report. The requirements studied thus are: full electrification, axle load of 22.5 t, a minimum line speed of 100 km/h, freight train length of 740 m, full implementation of ERMTS, and standard gauge of 1435 mm for new lines. Aim of the report is to show the current status and railway standard of the line from Stockholm/Örebro (Sweden) to Haparanda/Narvik (Sweden/Norway) in relation to the TEN-T Guideline parameters.

Highlights of the analysis and conclusions are:

  • There is no requirement for an overall double-track railway line system in the TEN-T Guidelines. Single tracks do not necessarily need to be identified as bottlenecks. If single tracks are considered as bottlenecks depend on the expected demand for rail services. Almost 90 % of the possible corridor extension in Sweden and 100 % of the analysed railway system in Norway are single railway tracks.
  • The maximum operating speed in about 75 % of the studied network in Sweden is 100 km/h or higher. The railway line in Norway does not fulfil this requirement at all, maximum speed at the Ofoten line is 70 km/h. A major part of the speed limitations in Sweden is located along the Iron Ore line (about 45% of the restrictions in Sweden).
  • All analysed networks allow a train length of 700 m or more regarding specific breaking and/or operating conditions. Trains using break group G can operate with a length up to 880 m in Sweden and 850 m in Norway. However, these are rather theoretic maximum train lengths because timetable restrictions and operational challenges lead to an average train length standard of 630 m in Sweden. Along the Ofoten line and Ore line certain ore trains run with a length of 746 m (all lengths including locomotives).
  • ERTMS currently is implemented in 24.2 % of the possible Northern extension of the ScanMed corridor. The implementation is planned to be finished by 2022 along the Norwegian network part (Ofotenbanen) and by 2021-2023 along the Swedish Malmbanan (Iron Ore line). Sweden plans to fulfil the ERTMS deployment on the entire TEN-T core network by 2030 and nation-wide by 2035.

Download the full TENTacle report here: Railway standard – Possible extension of the ScanMed Corridor from the Mälardalen.

Contact for further information:
Lovisa Uhlin
Region Örebro Län