Image credit to PNA

The Philippines still needs mass transit infrastructure that includes the ever important trains system, and the assets that we do have in our nation are either excessively old or too few, making it impossible to benefit a huge number of commuters that utilize the metro every day.

Last week our local scientist and Engineers of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has just unveiled a locally produced hybrid electric train that runs on clean power and likewise runs on existing Philippine National Railways (PNR) railroad tracks.

Former DOST Secretary Mario Montejo said, the Electric Hybrid Train right now is still a five-car prototype, is now being tested for both reliability and safety of the PNR’s existing tracks and if the new train proves its worth in the next few months it may be put into service by the PNR to augment and soon replace their small and aging fleet of commuter trains.

DOST Electric Hybrid Train – image credit to PNA

“This proves yet again that our engineers are very capable of developing high-tech systems if only they are empowered to pursue such R&D (research & development) activities,” Montejo said.

“Most important is that this is local. There was a lot of value adding done by our engineers to come up with this electric hybrid train,” he added.

The EHT prototype, which is set to undergo regular daily test runs on a 1.2-kilometer stretch of tracks at the PNR Tutuban station depot starting this week.

PNR general manager Joseph Allan Dilay said that they only had seven trains for their operations, which span from Caloocan City to Alabang.

“Right now, our headway is 30 minutes. We can improve that if we can add more trains to maybe 20 minutes,” Dilay said. – Jason E.

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