Industry repositions railway competition by delivering eco-friendly locomotives

Jan 18th, 2012 | Category: Articles, Current issue F&L, january 12, Products & Technologies

As emission cutting policies are a priority worldwide, the industry requires new demands. In the activity area of railway transport, although locomotives are environmentally friendly, locomotive manufacturers are confronted with challenges to answer to both customers’ demands and regulations in force and deliver a clean and eco-friendly transport.

The criteria regarding the delivery of an environmentally friendly transport are every day stricter and this reflects in the designing of vehicles, railway transport making no exception.
The railway industry is driven by these standards in the development of new technologies designed to attract operators and also meeting the conditions imposed by legislation.
The future requirements of the European railway transport imply changing the structure of customers regarding the freight volumes, increasing the transfer of freight on long distances as the EU wants to shift the transport on distances longer than 300 km on railways, amendments of demands based on legislation and stan-dards, all these factors triggering changes in the portfolio of railway products and services.
Consequently, operators need performing and efficient vehicles on long-run costs. Therefore, the locomotive manufacturers are confronted with challenges in meeting these demands and in delivering high traction locomotive that will operate on the entire railway networks, being designed to meet the emission cutting and low-consumption standards.
Locomotive technologies are generated by the need to deliver a freight transport that will support light axle loads with an efficient traction system and, at the same time, cutting fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
“Locomotives have to have a pure traction in different performance classes for a broad range of traffic requirements.
The attractiveness is delivered by cost efficiency, performance, interoperability and investment dumping. For example, Vectron locomotive provides an investment protection level also by the assembly of elements in the machine room”, declared Gabriel Stanciu, Rolling Stock Division Manager, Siemens Romania.
For locomotives to be energy efficient, locomotive manufacturers need to develop braking systems that help recover energy and cooling systems that use biodegradable transformers.
As regards emissions, the locomotives “have to be designed under the TSI noise limits, the braking system has to release less noise in the atmosphere due to the disk brake and the used materials have to be environmentally friendly and light to meet environment standards”, added Stanciu.

[ by Pamela Luică ]

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