Monday, 22 October 2012

Linear Motor-driven Subway in Yokohama City

EMU Yokohama Municipal Subway 10000 series arrives at Center-Minami Station

The Green Line is the newest subway in Yokohama City, some 20km southwest of Tokyo. It was opened in 2008. Connecting Nakayama on the JR East Yokohama Line and Hiyoshi on the Tokyu Toyoko Line, the operating length is 13.1km.

Just like the Toei Ooedo Line (see my blog on November 23rd, 2011), linear motor technology is adopted for the train driving system on this new subway line. A linear motor is an electric motor that doesn't have a shaft. It moves in a straight line, while a conventional motor has a rotary movement. You can see a special box, a "reaction plate," between the rails (see the top photo). This technology allowed downsizing of the tunnel section.

The EMU 10000 series is a main fleet of the Green Line. They are short (15.6m) and small sized 4-car trains. A total of 16 sets have been manufactured and operated. The small pantograph on the roof is very cute, but the front face of the train is not my favorite, because it is like a combat robot in science fiction movies.

Yokohama City Transportation Bureau plans to extend the Green Line both eastward and westward. To the east, it will be extended to Tsurumi on the JR East Keihin-Tohoku Line. Meanwhile, to the west, it will reach Negishi on the JR East Negishi Line via Kami-Ooka on the Keikyu Line in the future. Once it is completed, the Green Line will be a circler line surrounding the downtown of Yokohama City.

Platform of Center-Minami Station on the Green Line, Yokohama Municiple Subway