Signs of Construction: Traction Electrification System
Have you ever noticed the large tan structures or the overhead wires along the existing light rail lines? These two elements are significant to the traction electrification system (TES), which includes traction power substations (TPSS) and the overhead catenary system (OCS). The substations are approximately 40 feet by 16 feet and weigh about 80,000 pounds or 40 tons, which is equivalent to the weight of about five elephants. There will be 11 substations along the 10.5 miles of the I-225 Rail Line. These substations serve as the main power source for the trains, transmitting a staggering 825 direct current (DC) volts of energy to the trains through the OCS. The OCS wires seen above the tracks supply electricity through a single contact wire strung between poles. Both the TPSS and the OCS are essential in energizing the light rail trains.