The tests will run until May 19 at 200km/h using a series S-112 AVE train as well as two series S-730 AVE trains. Testing will be conducted in both in nominal and degraded ERTMS conditions in order to verify the safe operation of the system. The line is also equipped with Spain’s conventional Asfa signalling system as a backup. Trains will operate both successively and in opposite directions to monitor trains passing one another.

Once the test results have been verified, reliability test running and driver training will start. Testing will be conducted in accordance with Covid-19 regulations.

Testing of ERTMS Level 2 has already been completed on the Olmedo - Zamora section of the high-speed, which opened in December 2015 and Adif AV hopes to start driver training for operation under ERTMS soon.

The Zamora - Pedralba de la Pradería section is double track and standard gauge and electrified at 25kV 50Hz. The section is designed for maximum speeds of up to 350km/h.

The section has 14 viaducts, including the 756m Puebla East viaduct and the 645m viaduct over the Tera river, nine tunnels, including the 1563m Puebla and 1144m Otero tunnels, a new station at Sanabria and a gauge changer at Pedralba de la Pradería.

Final section

The remaining 101km Pedralba de la Pradería - Taboadela section of the Madrid - Galicia high-speed line is under construction. Track laying is due to be completed in June, followed by electrification in July.

Laying slab track in one of the tunnels on the Pedralba - Taboadela section.

The Pedralba - Taboadela section is unique in Spain for its extensive use of slab track which amounts to 72%, with the rest of the double-track line having conventional ballasted track. Another unusual feature of this section is that 77.8km have been built on two independent parallel platforms, while the rugged terrain means that long tunnels and viaducts predominate. The final 16km of the project involves upgrading the existing line from Taboadela to Ourense.

This final section will link up with the existing broad-gauge high-speed line from Ourense to Santiago de Compostella.

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