Union Pacific and Progress Rail Services said that the ultra-clean diesel PR30C-LoNOx locomotive being tested in intermediate line haul service has successfully achieved more than 500 operational hours. The locomotive -- powered by a 3516 Caterpillar engine -- has been retrofitted with a state-of-the-art after-treatment system, making it one of the cleanest locomotives operating in the United States.
The prototype intermediate
line-haul locomotive has more power than the typical 2000-horsepower 4-axle
Genset "switching" locomotive used around terminals, but is less
powerful than the 4400-horsepower 6-axle "line haul" locomotives used
for transcontinental freight service. Union Pacific plans to operate these
locomotives in typical regional service in the Midwest and in California.
"This is a critical
milestone for us in our efforts to bring more environmentally friendly
locomotives into revenue service," said Bob Grimaila, Union Pacific senior
assistant vice president, Safety and Environment. "Investing in the latest
technology that is capable of meeting the demanding requirements of rail
operations is essential. This important benchmark is one more positive step in
a challenging process to develop new technology that will meet EPA’s future
The Progress Rail
PR30C-LoNOx Locomotive has been re-powered with a single 3,005 horsepower,
low-emission, Caterpillar clean-diesel engine. It meets EPA’s Tier 2 standards
and is retrofitted with an advanced emission control technology. That
technology routes the exhaust through a diesel oxidation catalyst prior to
entering the selective catalytic reduction (SCR) chamber, where oxides of
nitrogen (NOx) emissions are reduced by nearly 75 percent from current
standards for new locomotives.
In early testing, the SCR
after-treatment system continues to perform as intended, with only minor issues
encountered and those have been limited to ones which would be anticipated with
this type of technology launch. With the 500-service hour milestone complete,
the development team will focus its efforts on the all-important 1,000-hour
service plateau. This durability and performance testing will continue in Texas
for the next several weeks to ensure safe and dependable performance before the
unit begins operating in revenue service in California in the fourth quarter.
"We share in the excitement
of achieving this milestone," said Billy Ainsworth, CEO, Progress Rail Services.
"But more importantly, we are confident in the expertise, history of quality
and cutting-edge innovation of a market leader like Caterpillar to help us
deliver the dependable and durable products that our rail customers demand."