Study of EMF levels for electric trains

Measurements made inside a fully loaded train

Measurements made inside a fully loaded train

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Frede Lillelund

Frede Lillelund

Head of Department Towers and Steel Structures
T: +45 5161 6045

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For a newly established train line in California USA, Ramboll has performed a health and safety evaluation of EMF levels from electric trains. 

The study measured the EMF levels from two types of new electric trains and compared the results to the Light Rail System currently in use. 

Measurements were carried out in California under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). As the State of California doesn’t have any current legislation on frequencies below 300 kHz, the results were compared to ICNIRP 1998, which is commonly referred to in European legislation. 

The inspected trains are running on 1000V DC third rail and are regulated with chopper motor control. Therefore, DC and AC measurements were carried out both inside and outside the trains. Furthermore, electric and magnetic fields were measured on AC.  Measurements were carried out under the simulation of different scenarios e.g.: a fully loaded train undergoing maximum acceleration. 

The Light Rail System used for comparison is running on a 750V DC catenary system. 

The study concluded that the EMF levels from the trains did not raise any health and safety concerns.

Ramboll Group A/S

Ramboll Group A/S
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