Progress Rail to supply BNSF battery locomotives

battery electric locomotivesBNSF Railway and Progress Rail signed a contract for the supply of up to four EMD Joule battery electric locomotives and two charging stations.

The new battery locomotives will be delivered in 2024 and would operate in yards and on the rail routes in Southern California.

“Progress Rail is excited to provide this groundbreaking zero exhaust emission technology to BNSF. We are committed to helping our customers meet their emissions reduction goals,” Marty Haycraft, president and CEO of Progress Rail said.

Combining its broad locomotive expertise with Caterpillar, Progress Rail will deliver the first battery electric locomotive with eight MWh of storage capacity, making the SD70J units the largest battery electric locomotives in North America.

“The Joule locomotive is an exciting advancement in battery-electric locomotive technology with more energy storage and faster charging. The project is well aligned with BNSF’s commitment to innovation and leadership in sustainable freight,” John Lovenburg, vice president of environment and sustainability at BNSF said.

The contract is supported in part by grant funding and when the new battery electric locomotives will enter operation, they will replace the existing diesel vehicles.

The EMD Joule battery locomotive series support a wide range of railway operations with battery capacities up to 14.5 MWh. The operations these vehicles support include switching and shunting yards and regional transport service.

Joule locomotives recover energy through dynamic braking system. When dynamic braking is activated to control train speed, the batteries are charged, saving what would otherwise be wasted energy. Alternatively, the batteries can be charged through our range of wayside charging options tailored to meet operational needs. Progress Rail is working to develop it range of zero exhaust emissions locomotive products helping operators to achieve their sustainability goals.

EMD has produced the most reliable and sustainable locomotive products designed for all commercial rail applications, with over 65,000 EMD-powered locomotives delivered to more than 75 countries.


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