Tuesday, 29 September 2020

Short Stay in Kyoto City: The Subway Karasuma Line

EMU 10 series stands at Kyoto station on the subway Karasuma line

After arriving at Kyoto, we transferred to the subway Karasuma line to visit several historical spots. The first one was Daikaku-ji temple. It's a Buddhist temple, but was originally opened as the detached imperial palace for Emperor Saga (765-842). I'm specifically fond of Osawa pond in the precincts. It's beautiful and quiet even in the city. We enjoyed walking around the pond, and spent a relaxing time there.

Incidentally, the subway Karasuma line was opened in 1981 between Kitaoji and Kyoto stations by the Transportation Bureau of Kyoto City. Currently, its line length is 13.7 kilometers. The trains on the line are directly operated onto the Kintetsu Kyoto line to Nara station. The gauge size is 1,435 millimeters and the electric system is 1,500 V DC overhead. The train is composed of 6 cars, and operated every 7-8 minutes in the daytime.

The EMU 10 series is the first model on the line. 20 sets, 120 cars, were built by Kinki Sharyo and Hitachi from 1980 to 1997. The body is aluminum alloy with a green colored vertical stripe on the front car. With regard to the technical specification, the electric control system was originally the thrystor or armature chopper, but recently changed to the state-of-art SIC-IGBT-VVVF inverter with the induction motors.

On March 29th last year, the Transportation Bureau made a press release announcing that the new model for the Karasuma line will be launched in the fiscal year 2021. Here too surged a wave of generational change.

Osawa pond in Daitoku-ji temple

Official information about the EMU 10 series on the subway Karasuma line, part 1 ( in Japanese):
Official information about the EMU 10 series on the subway Karasuma line, part 2 ( in Japanese):

Saturday, 26 September 2020

Short Stay in Kyoto City: New Shinkansen Train

EMU JR Central N700S series stands at Tokyo station
I recently visited Kyoto City for the first time in three years. Although it was a short stay with my family, I could take several railway lines in the city. What was new with the trains in this historical city?

Firstly, I could get on the new train on the Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo to Kyoto station. It was the EMU JR Central N700S series. As I posted before, JR Central launched this new model on July 1st this year to replace the old model, namely the 700 series. The introduction of the new Tokaido Shinkansen train was for the first time in 13 years.

One of the new passenger services in the N700S series is the electrical outlets. Even in the standard car, every seat has an electrical outlet to charge a passenger's mobile phone. It's quite convenient. In terms of riding comfort, the N700S series has new comfortable reclining seats both in Standard Class cars and Green (the first class) Cars. If you put your seat back, your seating face also automatically tilts. In addition, the N700S series has a full active vibration control device operated by a pump to prevent rolling. It's not conspicuous, but a good passenger service, isn't it?

Incidentally, I found a new logo of the N700S series on the side bodies. It's "Supreme". As you may know, S of the N700S series stands for Supreme. In other words, JR Central launched the N700S series as the supreme Shinkansen train.

To be continued...

Logo of the EMU JR Central N700S (Supreme) series

Tuesday, 22 September 2020

EMU E231 Series: Suburban Type Train

EMU JR East E231 series arrives at Yokohama station

The EMU E231 series is one of the major group trains on the JR East lines, and widely operated in the Tokyo metropolitan area. It was launched in 2000 to replace the old models such as the 103, 115, 201 and 205 series. A total of 2,736 cars were built by Tokyu Sharyo (present J-TREC), Kawasaki Heavy Industries and JR East Niitsu Factory from 2000 to 2011. There are two types of E231 series. One is a commuter train type, and the other is a suburban train type. Here, I'm going to explain the latter in this post

The suburban train type of the E231 series was launched in 2000 on the Tohoku main line. Different from the commuter train type, it has 6 doors per unit. The suburban type train consists of a 10-car main set and a 5-car additional set. In other words, it's operated as a 15-car set (a 10-car main set coupled with a 5-car additional set) or 10-car set (a 10-car main set alone). All trains belong to Oyama Railyard on the Tohoku main line or Kohzu Railyard on the Tohaido main line.

The bodies are stainless-steel, with orange and green-colored stripes. The main set has two double-decker Green Cars (first class cars). With regard to the technical specifications, the suburban type of the E231 series has IGBT-VVVF (Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor-variable frequency drive) electric control and regenerative braking systems. The traction motor is type MT73 induction motors that generate 95 kilowatts of electricity.

EMU JR East E231 series travels on the Tokaido main line