China Railways SS8

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SS8-0191 Hunghom.jpg
Type and origin
Power type Electric
Builder Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Works
Model SS8
Build date 1994 – 2001
 • UIC Bo′Bo′
Gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in)
Length 17,516 mm (57 ft 5.6 in)
Loco weight 88 tonnes (87 long tons; 97 short tons)
Electric system(s) 25 kV 50 Hz AC Catenary
Current source Pantograph
Transmission AC-DC
Loco brake Air and Dynamic
Performance figures
Maximum speed 170 km/h (106 mph)
Power output 3,600 kW (4,830 hp)
Tractive effort 208 kN (46,760 lbf) starting
126 kN (28,330 lbf) continuous at 100 km/h (62 mph)

The Shaoshan 8 (SS8; Chinese: 韶山8) is a semi-high-speed electric locomotive used on the Peoples' Republic of China's national railway system. The SS8 is based on its predecessor, the SS5, and was developed and built by CSR Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Works.


A total of 245 (0001–0243, 2001–2002)[citation needed] SS8s have been built since 1994. Batch production commenced in 1997.


The only route they were used on was the Jingguang line, the railway line linking Beijing West Railway Station with Guangzhou, Guangdong. The SS8 currently serves the Shanghai–Kowloon Through Train and the Beijing–Kowloon Through Train.

Speed record[edit]

On June 24, 1998, the SS8 broke the Chinese rail speed record by achieving a top speed of 239.6 km/h (148.9 mph) on a test run between Xuchang and Xiaoshangqiao. The locomotive used was fleet number 0001.

Use on KCR[edit]

When the Guangzhou–Shenzhen Railway was electrified, China Railway extended through trains into Hong Kong via the Kowloon–Canton Railway (KCR) East Rail Line. These trains were initially hauled by an SS8 locomotive but their pantographs were considered harmful to KCR's catenary even after necessary conversions had been made. So, for a long time, China Railways DF11 diesel locomotives were used. After KCR provided their technical requirements of HK-compliance pantographs to China Railway, the company adapted some of their SS8's in order to meet the pantograph requirements. As of March 2010, the SS8 is still the only China Railway electric locomotive allowed to access Hong Kong.


External links[edit]