There are at present three pioneer efforts to develop a Turkish tram-bulding industry.
The original of this article was published at Railvolution No. 1/15 (Feb 2015).
One is the Bursa-based company Durmaray, whose Ipekbocegi (Silkworm) tram was exhibited at InnoTrans 2012 (see Railvolution 6/12 p 54). This was hailed at the first 100% low floor tram to be built in Turkey by a 100% Turkish design team and using compenents, 100% of which were (allegedly) supplied by Turkish manufacturers. However the traction equipment and bogies are based on that of Siemens’s Combino trams. The first three Silkworms started commercial operation on the 6.5 km circular Line T1 which surrounds the old quarter of Bursa, on inauguration day, 12 October 2013.
One of the Bursa Ipekbocegi trams was exhibited at InnoTrans 2014. It is in the Burtram red livery. It is a 1435 mm gauge five section bi-directional vehicle, 25800 mm long, 2450 mm wide and 3500 mm high above rail top. It is mounted on three bogies, the two powered ones under each of the end sections, and the non-powered one under the centre section. The powered bogies are each equipped with two longitudinally-positioned 100kW asynchronous traction motors. The tram has a maximum service speed of 70 km/h, can surmount ramps as steep as 86‰ and has a tare weight of 39.4 t.
The floor height of the air conditioned passenger accommodation and cabs is 350 mm above rail top, and access is via two 1300 mm wide double-leaf and two 730 mm wide single-leaf doors, on each side. There are 48 seats, two wheelchair harness points, and space for up to 272 standees at a density of eight per m2. At present there is a possibility that 23 more Silkworms may be built for the Bursa network, and this contract is currently under negotiation. Bursa is at the heart of the district known as the Hudavendigar Vilayet, where silk production was the mainstay of the local economy for much of the 20th century.
by Dr Mike Bent, UK ©
Cover Photo: Durmazlar ©