GREEN RAIL NEWS
GreenRailNews.com “Green” Locomotive Roundup
Edited by Jody Moore of greenrailnews.com
ALTERNATIVE MOTIVE POWER SYSTEMS:
Quietly, a new builder has dipped its hat into the often maligned hybrid switching locomotive market. ALTERNATIVE MOTIVE POWER SYSTEMS announced that it had opted to use Corvus Energy industrial use lithium-ion AT6500-48V batteries for a prototype hybrid switching locomotive that the company is developing. According to a press release, “the prototype is being developed with a New Technology Research and Development grant from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.”
Also according to the press release, AMPS anticipates “the hybrid GenSet package will reduce nitrous oxide emissions by up to 98 percent and achieve fuels savings of 65 percent. The testing phase will be carried out in early 2013. When completed, the locomotive will be operated in Texas to move rail yard rolling stock owned by Railserve Inc.”
Though there is no clear ownership connection between AMPS and Berkshire Hathaway-owned Railserve, the company did help devlop the genset technology that Railserve is now using in its LEAF rebuilds.
AMPS’ official website can be found here: http://amps-onboard.com/
ELECTRO MOTIVE DIESEL:
On August 22, UNION PACIFIC held an official unveiling of nearly EPA Tier 4-compliant EMD locomotives, including SD59MX rebuild UP 9900, which was mentioned as being fitted with special equipment in the January 2012 Roundup. At that time, Allan Williams sent a photo of the unit at Progress Rail in Waycross, GA: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=2804725
According to press coverage in the Sacramento Bee, “The UP 9900 emissions systems include exhaust gas recirculation, which recycles 10 percent of the engine exhaust, reducing the amount of oxygen the engine runs on; diesel oxidation catalysts; and diesel particulate filters, which are in place in most modern diesel vehicles.
“UP is investing $20 million on 25 experimental locomotives, 16 of which will operate out of the Roseville railyard. The other nine will be based in the San Bernardino County community of Colton.
“The experimental locomotives are intermediate line-haul units, with an operating range of about 200 miles. They will be used exclusively in California. Testing on all 25 locomotives is scheduled to last through 2014.”
The story cites a reduction in horsepower as part of the emissions upgrade, but doesn’t mention that this is in part because the 9900’s original 16-710 engine was replaced with a downrated 12 cylinder 12-710T3 engine. Presumably, with the information gathered in the testing phase, EMD will be capable of producing a 16 cylinder equivalent with the required EPA Tier compliance. Tier 4 becomes a requirement in 2015.
After the event, UP immediately placed the 9900 in service out of the Roseville, CA pool. It was noted in the middle of the Roseville Hauler consist on Aug. 27, bracketed by UP 9921 and 9922.
Meanwhile in Erie, PA, General Electric held a ceremony on Aug. 24 to introduce its first Tier 4 Evolution series GEVO engine, GECX 2015.
GoErie.com made the following photos available online: http://reprints.goerie.com/mycapture/enlarge.asp?image=43351078&event=1521643&CategoryID=60309
According to press releases by GE and an article in Railway Age, the 2015 and its brethren are able to achieve Tier 4 equivalency without the use of Urea filtration or other maintenance-intensive treatments. Initial comments regarding the methods of achieving that reduction via cylinder temperature management were later removed from the Railway Age site. GE’s press release states a little more vaguely that the locomotive features “Breakthrough diesel engine technology to reduce key emissions by more than 70 percent.”
The Railway Age article can be found here: http://www.railwayage.com/index.php/mechanical/locomotives/ge-unveils-prototype-for-next-evolution®-series-locomotive.html?channel=35#.UDxSso4hPBw while the GE Press Release in PDF format can be downloaded from here: http://www.getransportation.com/rail/rail-blog/ge-unveils-the-first-tier-4-heavy-haul-locomotive-.html
NATIONAL RAILWAY EQUIPMENT:
2GS14B demonstrator NREX 1400 has finished up a tour on the CUYAHOGA VALLEY SCENIC RAILROAD and was noted back at NRE in Dixmoor, IL on August 5, 2012.
The INDIANA HARBOR BELT has taken delivery of the first of four six-axle 3GS21C locomotives. The engine was noted delivered to IHB’s Gibson yard in late July, 2012. When the author visited the yard in early August, the locomotive was inside the roundhouse there, and could not be viewed.
PROGRESS RAIL SERVICES:
The second of four PR30B locomotives for SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY RAILROAD was shipped in early August. SJVR 3001 joins the 3000, which was tested briefly on the Arizona and California before being sent to home rails in June.
According to a press release in April, the SJVR is to receive four of the repowered locomotives from Progress. Here is the body of that press release: http://www.progressrail.com/news-san-joaquin-valley.asp
Two more LEAF rebuilds were noted by Ken Zeigenbein at North Little Rock, AR on August 22. The destination of RSSX 576 and 4130 was not known at press time.
Ken posted two photos of the units on this page: http://thundertrain.org/locos-082212.html
In late August, Brian Tindle broke news that “DALLAS, GARLAND & NORTHEASTERN secured funds for seven more GenSet road switchers. Unlike their previous GenSets (DGNO 140, 141, 2000-2002) these will be from RJ Corman RailPower in the form of RP20BDs.”
Cores being moved to TMS Altoona for the order include CORP 3828 (GP38); DGNO 4025 (GP40); GEXR 4019 (GP40); NECR 4048 (GP40) and SJVR 3829 (GP38). Also moving toward Altoona and apparently for this order are RLK 2002 (GP38) and GEXR 4019 (GP40), both currently in Sudbury, ON.
RP20BD demonstrator RPRX 2010 was moved to San Antonio, TX and back during July and August. The unit was re-certified for EPA compliance by the Southwest Research Institute. By mid-August, the 2010 was back on “home” rails on RJ Corman in Lexington, KY.
PORT OF MONTREAL 2003 – their new RP20BD genset – was moved from Altoona, PA to Montreal, arriving at the Port on August 7, 2012.
©CRO September 2012