Noise Pollution Clearhouse
"Good neighbors keep their noise to themselves."

From the Official Journal of the European Communities

Excerpts from the technical specification for interoperability (TSI) relating to high-speed rolling stock – Commission Decision 2002/735/EC

2.2.7. Respect of the environment The materials selected for use on rolling stock shall minimise the emission of harmful and dangerous fumes or gases during use of the trains. The limits set for exterior noise and electromagnetic interference shall result in minimal environmental impact.

3.3.4. Protection of the environment
Essential requirement
1.4.1: The repercussions on the environment of the establishment and operation of the trans-European high-speed rail system must be assessed and taken into account at the design stage of the system in accordance with the Community provisions in force. As concerns rolling stock, this requirement is covered by boundary characteristics relating to outside noise, electromagnetic interference as well as light pollution. The relevant characteristics to validate in respect of this TSI are defined in Sections 4.1.8; 4.1.9; 4.2.20.
Essential requirement
1.4.2: The materials used in the trains must prevent the emission of fumes or gases which are harmful and dangerous to the environment, particularly in the event of fire.

The basic parameters for the Rolling Stock subsystem are those listed in Annex II of Directive 96/48/EC:
- maximum track forces (BP4)
- axle load (BP10)
- maximum train length (BP11)
- vehicle loading gauge (BP12)
- minimum braking characteristics (BP13)
- electrical boundary characteristics for rolling stock (BP14)
- mechanical boundary characteristics for rolling stock (BP15)
- exterior noise limits (BP17)
- electromagnetic interference limits (BP19)
- interior noise limits (BP20)
- air conditioning limits (BP21)
- requirements for the transport of mobility impaired people (BP22).
Additional basic parameters:
- maximum pressure variations in tunnels (BP23)
- maximum gradients (BP25).
4.1.1. Maximum track forces (BP4)
In addition to basic parameter BP10 that deals with the static axle load, the characteristics that allow the maximum track forces to be defined are:
- the dynamic load applied to the rail by the wheel,
- the transverse forces exerted on the track by the train.

4.1.8. Boundary characteristics linked to exterior noise (BP17)

(a) Stationary noise levels:

Noise levels in stations or on stabling tracks shall not exceed 65 dB(A) measured continuously or 70
dB(A) intermittently.

The following conditions apply to these values: measured over 30 seconds, in open country at 7,5 m
from the axis of the track at a height between 1,2 and 3,5 m.

(b) Noise levels in high-speed service:
The noise level generated by a trainset in service shall not exceed a value of 87 dB(A) at a speed of 250 km/h, 91 dB(A) at a speed of 300 km/h and 92 dB(A) at a speed of 320 km/h (linear interpolation for other maximum speeds) (1).

Measurements are carried out in accordance with the constant speed test in prEN ISO 3095 ó January 2001, with the following additional conditions:

- the passage of a train is measured in open country at 25 m from the axis of the track at a height of 3,5 m,

- at constant speed with traction power operating,

- minimal possible operational configuration for normal service,

(1) Taking into account that the measurement conditions and the description of the reference track were still under discussion at the time of the adoption of the present TSI, a margin of 1 dB(A) on the limit values is tolerated. This section will be revised when adopting the next generation TSI.

- a track type is used with design parameters ensuring minimum sound radiation from the track. These include: monoblock concrete sleepers in ballast and railpads with a static pad stiffness of at least 500 kN/mm at 60 kN preload. It is also permitted to use an acoustically equivalent track design, if available and proven. In that case, the track radiation must be shown to be equivalent to that of the track type mentioned, in accordance with prEN ISO 3095 ó January 2001, Annex B: railhead roughness level Lrough (one-third-octave-band) averaged over a width of 20 mm should be

with k0 = 1 m and the wavelength k between 0,2 and 0,005 m (rail roughness measurements according to ISO 3095, Annex C).

In areas particularly sensitive to noise, the level of noise perceived on the passing of a train can be reduced by the installation of sound attenuating measures placed along the track. All noise measurements shall be made according to prEN ISO 3095 ó January 2001.

4.1.9. Boundary Characteristics linked to exterior electromagnetic interference (BP19) For electric trains, the supply of electricity from the distribution substation to the trains generates interference of high or low intensity by conduction (through the catenary and rail) and by electromagnetic radiation. In addition, any on-board electrical equipment is capable of causing interference. Interference generated on the signalling system and the telecommunications network The rolling stock shall meet specifications not to interfere with track circuits, axle counters, and the telecommunications network. The items to be taken into account are listed in the infrastructure register for reference purposes.
Compatibility between the rolling stock and the characteristics of the detection system shall be demonstrated using the acceptance procedures in EN 50238 standard. not used Radio frequency interference The rolling stock shall meet the requirements of the EN 50121-3-1 standard by not generating interference affecting lineside and adjacent installations on a line declared to be interoperable. Electromagnetic immunity In order to avoid interference to the proper operation of rolling stock due to electromagnetic interference, the requirements of the following standards shall be met:

- EN 50121-3-1 for the total rolling stock subsystem,

- EN 50121-3-2 for the different kinds of on-board equipment susceptible to interference.

4.1.10. Boundary characteristics linked to interior noise (BP20)
The interior noise level of passenger vehicles is not considered to be an interoperability constituent. However, the noise level within the driver's cab is an important issue and in this case a permissible equivalent continuous sound pressure level of 84 dB(A) shall not be exceeded over 30 minutes. The measuring methods are defined in Chapter 6 of this TSI. The values recommended for new vehicle designs are indicated in Chapter 7.

4.2.10. Wheel/rail contact

(a) Description of the interface with the infrastructure: wheel/rail contact has an influence on:

- vehicle running stability,

- the vehicle ride behaviour,

- noise emitted into the environment.

Concerning the first point, the contact geometry shall be such that the stability of running gear is ensured at the highest running speeds.
In relation to the other points, account shall also be taken both of conventional formations (ballast and sleepers), and of ballast-less track which has different characteristics.
The required criteria shall also be complied with for vehicles and equipment with the wear that can be expected to occur on a high-speed network.
This aspect interfaces closely with many parameters within the infrastructure subsystem such as the track gauge, cant deficiency and equivalent conicity.
The different needs of this aspect are translated for this subsystem by the definition of standards for the wheels and axles that comprise the interface points.
The definition of this interface with the infrastructure subsystem allows the ride stability of the rolling stock to be guaranteed in all circumstances and limits of wear of the running gear.


6.3.1. Limit characteristics related to internal noises

- measuring methods

Measurements shall be effected under the following conditions:

- the doors and windows must be closed,

- the track must be in good running order, and track characteristics must be specified by the owner-railway,

- the hauled loads must be equal to at least twothirds of the maximum permissible value.
The maximum speed must be maintained for at least 90 % of the measurement time.
The measurement time may be subdivided into several short periods in order to comply with the abovementioned conditions. >BR?The measurement shall be made level with the driver's ear (in the seated position), in the centre of the horizontal surface stretching from the front windowpanes to the rear wall of cabs.

7.3.2. Boundary characteristics linked to exterior noise (Section 4.1.8)

It is allowable to apply Section 4.1.8 of this TSI (excluding the footnote) with the limit values referred to in the table below, for a transitional period of 24 months starting from the date of entry into force of this TSI, in the case of:

- options to purchase additional vehicles in contracts already signed at the date of entry into force of this TSI, or

- rolling stock being contracted during the transitional period based one existing design platforms.

Rolling stock already in operation and requiring a new authorisation for placing into service or already contracted at the date of entry into force of this TSI shall be allowed to run with the maximum abovementioned limit values.

7.3.3. Maximum pressure variations in tunnels (Section 4.1.13)
To take account of the numerous tunnels with a cross-section of 54 m2 which are traversed at 250 km/h, and those with a cross-section of 82,5 m2 and traversed at 300 km/h, Interoperable trainsets operating on the Italian network shall conform to the following envelope curve:
- DP0 < or = 1 600 Pa,
- DP1 < or = 3 000 Pa,
- DP1 Ø 0,8DP0 < or = DP2.

These values are given by:

- a ratio between the train and tunnel cross-sections of 0,18,

- a service speed of 250 km/h,

If a trainset does not fulfil the values specified above, the operation rules for this train shall be determined by applying the published rules of the infrastructure manager.

7.3.4. Passenger step (Section 4.2.5)

- Specific case for British lines:

The passenger step for those trainsets intended to serve the British network shall be optimised for the 915 mm platform height on that system in accordance with Section 4.2.5.

- Specific case for the lines of the Netherlands network:
The passenger step for those trainsets intended to serve the Netherlands network shall be optimised for the 840 mm platform height on that system in accordance with Section 4.2.5.

- Specific case for trains running on Irish and Northern Irish networks: The passenger step of trains designed for interoperable running on lines of the Irish and Northern Irish networks shall be optimised for the design platform height set down for these lines in the TSI for the infrastructure system.

7.3.5. Wheel-rail contact (wheel profiles) (Section 4.2.10)

- Specific case for trainsets operating frequently on British lines:
It is permissible for trainsets that frequently operate on the British network to be fitted with wheels with the EP8 profile when the following conditions are met:

- the maximum service speed of the trainsets so equipped shall be less than or equal to 250 km/h,

_ a report is made available which contains:

_ a demonstration of the stable running of this profile on interoperable tracks,

- a calculation of the different critical speeds on interoperable tracks taking into account the range of wear experienced in service,

- a report of service trials on interoperable tracks to confirm these results.

- Specific case for trains running on Irish and Northern Irish networks:
Wheel sets of trains designed for interoperable running on lines of the Irish and Northern Irish networks shall be compatible with the track gauge of 1 602 mm.

7.3.6. Protection against fire and toxic fumes

Prior to the publication of the relevant European specifications, the conformity with the requirements of Section 4.3.11 shall be deemed to be satisfied by the verification of conformity to the applicable national regulation of a Member State.


7.4.1. Boundary Characteristics linked to interior noise (BP20)

Noise levels in the driver's compartments must be kept as low as possible, by limiting noise at source through appropriate measures (acoustic insulation, sound absorption).
The Leq equivalent continuous noise level measured over 30 minutes must not exceed 78 dB(A) in the drivers' cabs of motive power units running at speeds of 160 km/h.
When higher speeds are involved, every effort should be made to achieve the same value specified above.
Values for speed = 300 km/h open track

ƒ 78 dB (A) recommended level
ƒ 75 dB (A) target level

in tunnel regardless of the superstructure

ƒ 83 dB (A) recommended level
ƒ 80 dB (A) target level

while stationary, with auxiliary equipment
running and the windows closed

ƒ 68 dB (A).

7.4.2. Boundary characteristics linked to exterior noise (BP17)
It is recommended that in the case of rolling stock to be ordered after 1 January 2005 or to be put into service after 1 January 2008, Section 4.1.8 of this TSI is applied with a reduction of 2 dB(A) at a speed of 250 km/h and 3 dB at speeds of 300 km/h and 320 km/h. In the case of 350 km/h, a reduction of 3 dB(A) should be striven towards.
This recommendation will serve as a basis for revising Section 4.1.8. in the context of the TSI revision process.
7.4.3. Characteristics linked to the carriage of persons of reduced mobility (BP22) In addition to the provisions of Section 4.1.12, rolling stock have to take into account, as appropriate, the results of the COST 335 Action.