DANISH State Railways (DSB) announced on May 4 that it has received government approval to start tendering for a new fleet for the Copenhagen S-Bane network, equipped for Automatic Train Operation (ATO).

DSB expects to select a supplier by the start of 2025, with testing of the first new trains due to start in 2028 for the fleet to enter service between 2029 and 2037.

S-Bane services are currently operated with a fleet of 104 eight-car class SA EMUs and 31 four-car class SE trains.

DSB says that forecasts indicate that Copenhagen will experience growing congestion over the coming years. Increasing the frequency of S-Bane services, extending the network to Roskilde and improving connections with other modes form part of the strategy for increasing the use of public transport.

Introducing ATO on the S-Bane network will require a major infrastructure upgrade. DSB says that work continues on preparing tenders for “supporting systems,” with a view to obtaining government approval this autumn.

The first section of the S-Bane to operate under ATO from 2029 will be Line F between Ny Ellebjerg and Hellerup.

Infrastructure manager Banedanmark completed the installation of CBTC on the 173km S-Bane network with the commissioning of the new signalling system on the final three routes to Frederikssund, Høje Taastrup and Køge in September 2022.

CBTC will enable Grade of Automation 4 (GoA4) to be implemented throughout the network by 2037, allowing completely driverless operation.

“The S-Bane has reached its maximum capacity during rush hour, and our current generation of S-Bane trains must be replaced within 15 years,” says DSB strategy and rolling stock director, Mr Jürgen Müller.

“With the tender, the S-Bane of the future has really been set in motion.”

For detailed data on rolling stock orders worldwide, subscribe to IRJ Pro.