DC to DC Converters for Railway Applications

DC to DC Converters for Railway Applications

ADM is proud to represent Premium Power in Australia. Premium offer a wide range of industrial power supplies, DC to DC converters, and AC to DC inverters with railway approvals.

We look at some of the most common railway applications for DC to DC converters in Australia and look at some of the models that could be used in each instance.

DC to DC Converters for DC Grids Onboard Railway Vehicles 

Modern trains have an onboard DC distribution system to provide power to the traction system and all other systems on the train, including heating and ventilation, lighting, public information displays, etc. 

The advantages of DC distribution include lower overall losses and fewer problems with harmonic distortion.  

When selecting a DC-to-DC converter to use onboard railway vehicles it is important to verify that they comply with the applicable standards. ADM represents Premium SA in Australia, who offer a comprehensive range of standard DC-to-DC converters and can also provide custom solutions where necessary. The DC-to-DC converters are certified to EN50155, the standard for electronic devices on railway vehicles, and EN45545-2, the standard that applies to fire and smoke hazards.  

Two products from the standard range of DC-to-DC converters that are used in on board DC distribution systems are the CRS-500T series and the CRS-1000T series. 

Premium CRS-500 DC to DC Converter
Premium CRS-1000 Railway DC to DC Converter


Overview of standard DC-to-DC Converter Models 


Input Voltage Ranges

Output Voltages

Power Output


14-4~30V, 21.6~47V, 28.8~60V, 43.2~90V, 66V~144V 

24V, 48V, 110V  500 WATTS


14-4~30V, 21.6~47V, 28.8~60V, 43.2~90V, 66V~144V  24V, 48V, 72V, 110V  1000 WATTS


The input voltage ranges available combined with the range of output voltages means that in most cases there is a standard model available for your railway application. If not, then please contact ADM to discuss a custom DC-to-DC converter.  

Railway DC to DC Converters for Headlights and Windscreen Wipers

Of course, all trains and trams have windscreen wipers and headlights fitted.

DC to DC converters are required to take the vehicles on board voltage and convert it to that required by the headlights or wipers.

DC to DC converters used on board locomotives and trains must comply with standard EN50155 covering electronic equipment used on rolling stock for railway applications, and EN45542-2 the European standard for fire protection on railway vehicles.

Premium Power’s CTS-120 and CTS-240 are used in such applications around the world.



It goes without saying that they apply with the applicable standards.

The available input voltage ranges are 14.4~30VDC, 21.6~47VDC, 28.8V~60VDC, 43.2~90VDC, 66~144VDC and 132~275V. This covers most of the voltages you will find aboard locomotives and multiple units. Output voltages available are 5V, 12V, 24V and 48V, which should address most onboard applications.

DC to DC Converters for Front Hatch Mechanisms on Trains

Front hatches enclose the front couplers when there is no need to couple the railway vehicles. They protect the coupler and train front from moisture and dust penetration, whilst creating a streamlined and attractive vehicle shape. A mechanism rotates the hatches inside the nose cone to generate ​sufficient clearance for the coupler to operate in all track conditions. 

The power required to operate the front hatch's mechanism can be provided by a DC to DC converter such as the CTS-60 from Premium Power. 

Power Source CTS-60 Railway DC to DC Converter

The range of CTS-60 series DC to DC converters are easy to install and include models with power outputs of up to 60 Watts. They have been designed to comply with the 50155 railway standard and all models have remote sensing and operate in environments up to 70ºC.

DC to DC Converters for Railway Control Systems 

Premium has more than 30 years' experience in supplying power solutions to the international railway market. This began in 1985 with a custom 300W DC to DC converter with a double output that was required for a retrofit project on the Madrid subway.  

Premium still offers custom solutions today, but for added convenience offers a range of standard DC to DC converters that comply with railway standard EN50155 and EN45545 2. 

Premium’s DC to DC converters are used to convert the available on-board power to the correct DC voltage to power the trains control systems.  

For convenient installation they are available in a Eurocard 3U format.  

Three such models are the CCS-60, CTS-120 and CTS-240.  

To look up the specifications of each of these, please click on the images below: 


DC to DC Converters for Train and Tram Door Systems 

It is very rare to find a passenger train in Australia that does not have powered doors. Even if there is some older stock still in service, it very likely has a powered door closing mechanism, even if the door is opened manually.  

Premium Power’s CRS-500-T series DC to DC converters are well suited to this application.  


The CRS-500-T DC to DC converters have a typical power output of 500 WATTS and there are three output voltages within the range: 24V, 48V, and 110V.  

The input voltage range options are: 14.4~30VDC, 21.6~47VDC, 28.8~60VDC,43.2~90VDC, and 66~144VDC, which covers most onboard power systems.  

All models are designed to work in temperatures of up to 70°C and cooling is via natural convection. Efficiency is up to 92%. 

Other useful features are also available, such as redundant operation. These DC converters provide protections against overload and short-circuits, output over-voltage, reverse input voltage, input under-voltage and input over-current.  

Should an input undervoltage condition occur the CRS-500-T converter is disabled, preventing the battery from becoming totally discharged. 

The CRS-500-T inverters carry EN50155 and EN45545-2 approvals. 

DC to DC Converters for Onboard Hot Water Systems 

Aboard interstate, interregional and some intercity trains there is a need to provide hot water in the buffet car. 

Again, the CRS-500-T DC to DC Converter is a good solution for this application.  

DC to DC Converters for Train Toilet Modules 

The Premium CTS-120 series is well suited to this application. 


They are EN50155 and EN45545-2 approved.  

Input voltage range options are: 14.4~30VDC, 21.6~47VDC, 28.8~60VDC,43.2~90VDC, and 66~144VDC. There are four output voltage options: 5VDC, 12VDC, 24VDC, and 48VDC.  

The CTS-120 DC-DC converters have a galvanic isolation between input and output. They operate at a fixed switching frequency and use push-pull converter topology.  

There are two options to choose: Remote sensing or Low output voltage alarm.  

For maximum regulation, the remote sensing terminals can be connected to the load. This will allow a power cable voltage drop of up to 0.3 V on each cable to be offset. 

The CTS-120 DC to DC converters are protected against overload and short-circuits by means of a current limiting circuit. They are also protected against reverse polarity input voltage, and the input fuse blows if an improper connection is made. When a converter input undervoltage condition occurs, the converter is disabled, preventing the battery from becoming totally discharged. 

All Premium railway DC to DC converters come with a 5-year manufacturer’s warranty. If you cannot find a suitable model within the standard, it is very likely that we will be able to offer a customised solution. 

For further information on railway DC to DC converters, please contact ADM

Premium Power Supplies

13 May 2021