SNCF Thalys 4533
The PBA trainsets, based on the trivoltage version of the TGV Réseau trainsets, were first presented on 9 January 1996 by the Belgian railways (SNCB) in Brussels and by the Dutch railways (NS) in Utrecht. The presentation ceremony in Paris took place later, on 17 January 1996 at the Gare du Nord. All ten are owned by SNCF, and numbered in the 4500 series as are their Réseau brethren. They can function under 25kV 50Hz AC, 1.5kV and 3kV DC. Prior to Thalys service and rather than sitting idle, they joined the standard TGV fleet for the Brussels service, between 29 January and 2 June 1996.
Besides the new livery and interior, technical modifications include the addition of the Dutch cab signal, ATB phase IV. This equipment complements the TVM 430 cab signal (used on high speed lines), the KVB system (used on conventional lines in France), and the TBL cab signal used in Belgium. This addition entails a few extra electronics racks in the power units, as well as a dedicated display unit in each cab. Special care had to be taken with respect to the Dutch signalling system, which uses a frequency of 75Hz easily perturbed by the AC traction chain.
Picture added on 30 September 2006