System Testing

System testing ensures that all components of Caltrain Electrification – from the wires and power facilities to the high-performance electric trains – function seamlessly together. Learn more about the steps involved to test the different parts of the electrification infrastructure and electric trainsets on the Caltrain corridor below.


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Traction Power Facility Testing

Power is routed to one of ten facilities to test mechanical and electrical components.

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Energized Wire Testing

To ensure proper voltage, power is routed to overhead wires in sections.

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Test Train

A retired AEM-7 locomotive tests the new electrification infrastructure in segments.

Electric Trains

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Static Testing

The new electric train remains stationary as features and functions such as the lights, HVAC, monitors, doors, and more are tested at a Caltrain facility.

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Dynamic Testing

The vehicle undergoes short distance, low-speed testing near a Caltrain facility.

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Routine Testing

Acceleration and braking are tested repeatedly to ensure maximum safety and optimal speeds.

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Qualification Testing

This stage tests control and communication protocols such as train radio, rescue operations, and Positive Train Control (PTC).

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Burn-in and Simulated Service Testing

At this phase you can spot the new, state-of-the-art electric train as it runs up and down the corridor, earning its first 1,000 miles of flawless transit.

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After completing all testing requirements, the electric train is ready for passenger service. Caltrain now owns and operates California’s first electrified commuter rail train.

Over the next two years, additional trainsets will undergo system testing. Once 14 of the 19 electric trainsets achieve conditional acceptance, the electric fleet is ready to serve riders.