Siemens builds subways and trains in vienna with solar power

The solar plant on the roof of Siemens Mobility Austria's factory buildings in Vienna generates one megawatt. - © Siemens Mobility Austria

Siemens Mobility doubles the output of its photovoltaic system on the roof of its plant in Vienna. There the company manufactures night and subway trains.

More sun in subways and night trains: What sounds like an oxymoron has long been a reality for Siemens Mobility Austria. The company has been producing subways and night trains at its plant in Vienna-Simmering with electricity from a photovoltaic system with a capacity of 500 kilowatts, which is located on the roof of the factory halls. Now this plant has been expanded to one megawatt.

The plant can supply electricity for 220 households. In fact, however, it is used to operate the robotic systems that power modern subways such as the current Type X cars, which will also run in Vienna in the future. In addition, Siemens Mobility Austria also builds wagons for the night trains used by the Austrian Federal Railways (oBB) to connect Europe’s metropolises at this plant.

Rail vehicles for double climate protection

The plant was recently put into operation in the presence of Vienna’s city councilor for economic affairs, Peter Hanke, who is also responsible for public transportation. "Vienna is one of the most livable cities in the world. Modern and attractive jobs are part of this, such as at Siemens Mobility, one of the largest industrial companies in our city," said Hanke at the commissioning ceremony. "Exports play a significant role here, which is economically important for our city. I am pleased that rail vehicles from Vienna are part of the global fight against climate change and that the company itself also relies on environmentally friendly technologies in the process."

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Environmental protection does not start at the platform

For Arnulf Wolfram, managing director of Siemens Mobility Austria, manufacturing with solar power produced on site is a matter of course "In the middle of Vienna, we produce subways and passenger trains that allow people around the world to travel in an environmentally friendly way without CO2 emissions," he explains. "But environmental protection doesn’t just start at the train platform: even in production at this major industrial site, we combine greater sustainability with greater cost-effectiveness."

Climate-neutral production from 2030

However, the solar plant cannot cover the abundant electricity demand of the railroad plant. That’s why Siemens also has to buy electricity from the grid. But here, too, the company has long been relying entirely on certified green electricity. This is also part of the company’s sustainability strategy. The goal: By 2030, Siemens Moblity Austria wants to operate completely without CO2 emissions. Since 2016, the company has reduced annual CO2 emissions by 3 percent.500 tons lower. The company has succeeded in doing this by reducing annual fossil fuel consumption by 13.000 liters and of electricity by around 22.000 kilowatt hours lowered. To this end, last year Siemens switched completely to LED lighting in its approximately 7.000 square meters of factory floor space converted.

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