‘Powerhaul’ loco unveiled at Innotrans

‘The first of its kind” – Freightliner’s new GE shown off.

Freightliner/GE Powerhaul(tm) locomotive

Freightliner/GE Powerhaul locomotive

FREIGHTLINER GROUP LTD and GE Transportation have today launched images of the new ‘PowerHaul™’ locomotive (previously known as the Genesis project) being developed for the UK market at the InnoTrans show in Berlin. 30 of these locomotives where ordered by Freightliner last year and the first are due to be delivered in late 2009. GE unveiled a PowerHaul™ engine and model of the locomotive at the show.

“The project is on track to deliver increased hauling capacity and a significant improvement in fuel economy and we are extremely pleased with the development to date of these locomotives,” commented Tim Shakerley, Engineering Director, Freightliner Group Ltd.

Freightliner is the launch customer and has helped to shape the specification of features for the new locomotive in partnership with GE. The design is configured to minimise carbon emissions per tonne moved through the application of new technology engines and control systems, as well as meeting the latest, and future standards for structural design and protection in the event of a crash.

Added Shakerley: “The new locomotive will enable us to haul greater payloads and increase our fuel efficiencies, improving our carbon footprint and service offering to our customers. Packaging all of the new technology including AC traction, dynamic brake, air conditioned cabs, into a locomotive that is compliant to UK clearance gauge and axle weight has been a challenge, but the design team has been uncompromising in delivering these objectives with a delivery date towards the end of 2009.

“Freightliner is committed to increasing the amount of freight by rail, currently removing up 70 lorries of the UK roads with each Intermodal service we operate. The introduction of these locomotives will enable us to remove even more vehicles from the UK’s already congested roads. This is the largest order of locomotives that Freightliner has made to date, which demonstrates its ongoing commitment to investment within the rail freight industry. Locomotives are a 30 year asset and development of new technology is essential to continue to support the increasing demand for Freightliner’s efficient, reliable and innovative rail freight services, whilst at the same time improving the environmental impact of freight transport.”

The GE locos will complement Freightliner’s existing fleet of more than 160 locos and 3000 wagons. They have not been assigned to a particular Freightliner business at this time, but will be used to increase tonnages hauled on specific routes where there are capacity constraints.

Freightliner/GE Powerhaul(tm) engine

GE Powerhaul engine

PowerHaul™ locomotive specification

Body Narrow Body with exterior walkway
Length Over Buffers 21,710 mm
Height (over operator cab) 3,917 mm
Width (over cab sides) 2,642 mm
Total Weight 129 tonnes
Axle Configuration CoCo
Gross Horsepower 2750 kW (3686 hp)
Maximum Speed 120 kph / 75mph
Maximum Starting Tractive Effort 534 kN
Wheel Diameter 1,067 mm
Fuel Capacity (usable) 6,000 litres / 1320 Gallons
Engine PowerHaul P616
Fuel Distribution System Common Rail
Alternator GE GTA series
Traction Motors AC – GE 5GEB30
Bogies Fabricated frame with axle hung motors
Air Brakes Dynamic Electronic – EAB
Control System GE CCA – Common Control Architecture
Diagnostics Self Testing with diagnostic display panel

The traction motors are individually controlled via separate inverters. Consequently this leads to better power distribution based on available adhesion and the use of the AC motor with its better torque-speed curve means the loco has a much higher starting torque which means it has a greater starting tractive effort.

Dynamic Brakes
The locomotive is fitted with rheostatic (dynamic) brake. When slowing it uses the traction motors to regenerate energy and put electric current back into the locomotive, using the electric current to drive the auxiliary motors. This is the first time it has ever been applied in a diesel loco in the UK.

Dual cabs with left of centre operator desk, and air conditioning as standard. The engine is resiliently mounted to reduce vibration. Cabs are sound insulated and driver information is provided by electronic information screens.

Fuel efficiencies
The locomotive is 7% more fuel-efficient than previous locomotives achieving 197g/kwh. By using the energy dissipated by the dynamic brakes to drive the auxiliaries, and controlling the auxiliaries separate from the engine speed, a further 3 % efficiency is gained. It is therefore 10% more efficient than previous locos.

The locomotive will be fitted with remote dial up software which allows monitoring the performance real time, troubleshoot and find problems before anyone knows they are happening, and dispatch a technician with the correct parts to the location where the loco is going to finish its journey for preventative maintenance.

Data may be subject to change based on actual design properties of locomotive.


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