Sunday, April 24, 2016

EMU E235 Series: New Model on the Yamanote Line

EMU JR East E235 series arrives at Shinagawa Station on the Yamanote Line

On November 30th, 2015, JR East launched a new EMU model, E235 series, on the Yamanote Line for the first time in 13 years. The E235 series is a direct current EMU built by J-TREC Niitsu Factory. It is an 11-car train consisting of 6 motor cars and 5 trailers.

The Yamanote Line is well known as Japan's most crowded railway. The track is double. Its gauge size is 1067mm. The electric system is 1500V DC overhead. This busy line is looped through several downtown areas of Tokyo. Its total length is 34 km and all the trains run in the same direction throughout the day; clockwise or counter-clockwise. The train covers the entire route in about 60 minutes. There are 29 stations and most of them are interchange stations to the subway, private railways and/or other JR lines.

The first set (number 01), made its debut last year, but the operation was cancelled just after the commencement of its commercial operation, because the on board train monitoring system went down. After the software modification, the E235 series was launched again on March 7th, 2016. Since then, the E235 series has been operated smoothly.

The E235 series has an advanced apparatus such as a SIC-element VVVF inverter (variable frequency drive) electric control system. I agree with its originality, but the outer design of the E235 series is not my cup of tea to be honest. Many rail-fans call it "a microwave oven" because of its front design.

It is hard to please everybody.

Side view of KuHa 234-1, the EMU JR East E235 series

Official information about the JR East E235 series (in Japanese):