The Anonymous Widower

Service Provision On The Levenmouth Rail Link

The reinstated Levenmouth Rail Link, will have two stations; Leven and Cameron Bridge.

According to this section in Wikipedia, which is entitled Service Provision, this will be the service.

The expected level of services is two trains per hour between Leven railway station and Edinburgh Waverley. Both will call at Cameron Bridge. One train will travel via Kirkcaldy and along the coast, while the other train will travel via Dunfermline along the inner Fife Circle Line.

In the Wikipedia entry for Leven station, it says that the service will take just over an hour.

Consider.

  • Services between Edinburgh and Glenrothes with Thornton take about an hour whether the go via Kirkcaldy or Dunfermline.
  • The current timings are based on Class 158 or Class 170 diesel trains.
  • If as I surmise in Trains On The Levenmouth Rail Link, the trains are battery-electric Class 385 trains, these trains with their electric power will at least match the schedules of the diesel trains.
  • Network Rail will design the track layout at Thornton junction, so that trains will clear the junction efficiently.
  • Glenrothes with Thornton station is only half a mile from Thornton Junction.
  • Leven station is only 5.9 miles from Thornton Junction.

I can see battery-electric trains moving smoothly and quietly up and down the Levenmouth Rail Line and around Thornton junction to provide a very efficient service to Edinburgh.

Could we even see trains from Edinburgh take this route?

Edinburgh, Haymarket, Edinburgh Gateway, Dalmeny, North Queensferry, Inverkeithing, Dalgety Bay, Aberdour, Burntisland, Kinghorn, Kirkaldy, Cameron Bridge, Leven, Cameron Bridge, Glenrothes with Thornton, Cardenden, Lochgelly, Cowdenbeath, Queen Margaret, Dunfermline,  Dunfermline Town, Rosyth, Inverkeithing, North Queensferry, Dalmeny, Edinburgh Gateway and Haymarket.

Note.

  1. A second service would run in the opposite direction.
  2. Trains would reverse and the drivers would change cabs at Leven station.
  3. Trains would charge batteries on the Levenmouth Rail Link and at Edinburgh.
  4. Every station on the route would get two trains per hour (tph) in both directions.

The hourly service between Edinburgh and Cowdenbeath could continue.

The Bridges Across The Firth Of Forth

There would be a battery-electric train every thirty minutes in both directions  across the Forth Bridge.

This Google Map shows the three bridges across the Firth of Forth.

Note.

  1. The most Westerly bridge is the  Queensferry Crossing, which carries the M90 and was opened in 2017.
  2. The bridge in the middle is Forth Road Bridge, which opened in 1964.
  3. The Forth Bridge is the most Easterly bridge and it opened in 1890.
  4. North Queensberry station is to the North of the bridge and Dalmeny is to the South.

After opening of the Levenmouth Rail Link, there could be a battery-electric train every thirty minutes in both directions  across the Forth Bridge.

This sounds like an opportunity to develop the bridge with its battery trains as a tourist attraction.

Battery-electric trains could run from Edinburgh to the following places.

  • Dundee
  • Perth
  • St. Andrews

And that’s just for starters.

Conclusion

There is a lot more to the Levenmouth Rail Link, than just a double-track railway to Leven, as it enables so much.

Related Posts

The New Leven Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

The New Cameronbridge Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

Trains On The Levenmouth Rail Link

 

 

 

 

 

July 28, 2021 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Hay Fever, Coeliac Disease And The AstraZeneca Covid-19 Vaccine

I am 73 and was diagnosed as a coeliac at 50.

I am fairly sure, I have suffered from hay fever all my life, but usually I can control it.

This year, it has been particularly bad and I asked my GP about it last night. He indicated it had been a bad year.

I then said that as being a coeliac I have a strong immune system and from what I have read, the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine also boosts the immune system.

I just wonder, if my coeliac disease and the vaccine are both attacking the hay fever and making me feel, so much worse than in any other year.

Certainly, all I want to do, is lie down!

 

July 28, 2021 Posted by | Health | , , , | 2 Comments

Trains On The Levenmouth Rail Link

This page on the Network Rail web site, shays this about the trains that will run the service.

And while the line will be electrified with overhead wires, services will be operated initially by battery electric units in order to reduce the number of diesels operating on the network as early as possible.

The obvious battery-electric trains to be used will be Hitachi Regional Battery Trains, which are described in this Hitachi infographic.

Note that the range on battery power alone is 90 km or 56 miles.

ScotRail currently run a fleet of the following trains.

  • 46 x three-car Class 385 trains.
  • 24 x four-car Class 385 trains.

Could some of these trains be fitted with batteries to work the Fife Circle Line and the Levenmouth Rail Link?

Distances involved include.

  • Haymarket and Glenrothes-with-Thornton via Kirkcaldy – 29.6 miles
  • Haymarket and Glenrothes-with-Thornton via Dunfermline – 30.5 miles
  • Leven and Thornton junction – 5.9 miles

It would appear that if between Leven station and Thornton junction were to be electrified, then with a battery range of forty miles, the battery-electric trains could reach Haymarket station with ease.

Conclusion

It looks to me, that Baldrick’s Scottish cousin has developed a cunning plan!

But it does show how one short length of easy electrification on a new track – Leven and Thornton Junction, can avoid a more difficult electrification – Haymarket and Glenrothes-with-Thornton, which goes over the culturally-sensitive World Heritage Site of the Forth Bridge.

North From Thornton Junction

It should be noted that Haymarket and Dundee via Kirkcaldy is 57.9 miles.

  • I have just flown my virtual helicopter on the route and much of it is flat farmland.
  • Electrification to the North of Thornton Junction could use the same power feed as that used for the Levenmouth Rail Link.
  • A good proportion of the battery-electric trains, that are pencilled in for Edinburgh and Aberdeen have been or will be built by Hitachi.

I would expect that Hitachi’s techniques, that I talked about in Solving The Electrification Conundrum could be used to enable battery-electric Class 385 and Class 80x trains to run between Edinburgh and Dundee.

I have a feeling, that electrifying the Levenmouth Rail Link, may only be 5.9 miles of double-track electrification, but that with a few miles of electrification North of Thornton Junction, it can enable electric trains to run the following routes.

  • Edinburgh and Leven via Kirkcaldy.
  • Edinburgh and Leven via Dunfermline.
  • Edinburgh and Dundee
  • Edinburgh and Perth

Note that as Dunblane is electrified, battery-electric trains might be able to reach Dundee from Glasgow with some charging at Perth.

It does appear that electric trains could be serving Dundee.

Related Posts

The New Leven Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

The New Cameron Bridge Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

Service Provision On The Levenmouth Rail Link

 

July 28, 2021 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , | 7 Comments

The New Cameron Bridge Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

The reinstated Levenmouth Rail Link, will have two stations; Leven and Cameron Bridge.

This Google Map shows the River Leven and the remains of the old railway as they run West from Leven.

Note.

The River Leven runs South-West to North-East across the map.

The track of the old rail link runs towards Leven along the North Bank of the river.

This Map from this page on the Network Rail web site, shows the location of the new Cameron Bridge station.

Note.

  1. The station will be to the East of the A915 road.
  2. Cameron Bridge station will have two platforms.station has two platforms.
  3. There will be 150 car parking spaces.
  4. There is space for a bus stop and turning area.
  5. There will be two waiting shelters.
  6. The platforms look like they could be extended if needed.

Unlike Leven station, there will be a bridge with lifts for passengers.

Related Posts

The New Leven Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

Service Provision On The Levenmouth Rail Link

Trains On The Levenmouth Rail Link

 

July 27, 2021 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | 3 Comments

The New Leven Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

The reinstated Levenmouth Rail Link, will have two stations; Leven and Cameron Bridge.

This Google Map shows the mouth the the River Leven.

The key point to note is the Sainsbury’s supermarket, which is to the North of the Riven Leven, close to the A955 bridge across the river.

This Map from this page on the Network Rail web site, shows the location of the new Leven station.

Note.

  1. Leven station has two platforms.
  2. There is a car park.
  3. There is space for a bus stop and turning area.
  4. There are two waiting shelters, both on the same platform
  5. The platforms look like they could be extended if needed.

It appears that passengers will cross the line by walking past the end of the line.

This map shows a close-up of the bridge over the River Leven.

It used to connect the railway to the coal-fired Methil power station.

Some of the track is still visible.

Is provision being made in the design of Leven station, so that the rail link can be extended across the River Leven to a second station near the Bayview stadium or to allow the development of housing or industrial sites along the Forth of Firth?

Conclusion

It looks to be a good scheme, which connects to the centre of the town and could be developed with bus and walking links for onward travel.

Related Posts

The New Cameron Bridge Station On The Levenmouth Rail Link

Service Provision On The Levenmouth Rail Link

Trains On The Levenmouth Rail Link

July 27, 2021 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Air Products, Cummins To Accelerate Hydrogen Integration In Fuel Cells Trucks

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on H2 View.

This is the first two paragraphs of the article.

Air Products and Cummins jointly announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding today (July 26) to work together to accelerate the integration of hydrogen fuel cell trucks around the world.

Cummins is expected to provide hydrogen fuel cell electric powertrains integrated into selected OEM partners’ heavy-duty trucks for Air Products, as the company begins the conversion of its global fleet of distribution vehicles to hydrogen.

Note.

  1. In 2020, Air Products had a turnover of nearly $9 billion.
  2. Air Products used to provide the liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen for the Space Shuttle.
  3. According to Wikipedia, Air Products have a good Environmental Record.
  4. In 2020, Cummins had a turnover of nearly $20 billion.
  5. Cummins have been reported to be testing hydrogen-fueled internal combustion engines.

Have two of the biggest beasts joined together to exploit they technology, by initially developing hydrogen-powered trucks for Air Products global distribution?

To my mind, this could be a deal to watch.

  • Cummins have both the fuel cell development and manufacture. under their control.
  • Air Products have the production of the hydrogen under their own control.
  • Hydrogenics, who Cummins took over in 2019, are manufacturers of both fuel cells and electrolysers.

Wrapped round it all are two of America’s largest companies, who trade globally.

But what better way is there to demonstrate hydrogen-powered trucks is there, than to use them to distribute your own products?

July 27, 2021 Posted by | Hydrogen, Transport | , , , | 1 Comment

ORR Authorises Merseyrail ‘777s’

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Rail Magazine.

This is the first paragraph.

Merseyrail’s 52 Class 777 trains have been authorised for passenger use by the Office of Rail and Road.

I can’t wait to get up to Liverpool to have a ride.

But it will be a few weeks yet!

On the other hand, these trains will be as valuable to Merseyside as Crossrail will be to London.

July 26, 2021 Posted by | Transport | , | 1 Comment

First Passenger Journey In The UK With mtu Hybrid PowerPack

The title of this post, is the same as that of this press release from Rolls-Royce.

This is the first paragraph.

The mtu Hybrid-PowerPack has passed another milestone successfully: In the UK, a train with mtu hybrid drive carried passengers for the first time as part of a special journey.

So how did mtu, a German manufacturer of large diesel engines for trains and ships, end up in bed with Rolls-Royce?

Wikipedia says this.

MTU Friedrichshafen remained a subsidiary of DaimlerChrysler until 2006 when it was sold off to the EQT IV private equity fund, becoming a part of the Tognum Corporation.

Rolls-Royce Holdings and Daimler AG acquired Tognum in 2011. In 2014, Tognum was renamed Rolls-Royce Power Systems, having become a 100 per cent subsidiary of Rolls-Royce Holdings.

A bit tortuous, to say the least!

This paragraph from the press release describes the journey.

The journey of the train – called HybridFLEX – was part of celebrations to mark the 25th anniversary of UK rail operator Chiltern Railways, which will use the train on its routes. It is a converted Turbostar DMU, which was previously equipped with a conventional mtu drive system.

It doesn’t sound very special, but it’s the equivalent of taking your BMW, Jaguar or Mercedes from twenty years ago and converting it to a full hybrid car with batteries, to assist the diesel engine.

Fuel and emission savings of 25 per cent are claimed, with the additional benefit that the train will not use the diesel engines in stations or sensitive areas.

In HybridFLEX Battery-Diesel Train Continues Programme Of Testing, I said this.

In the UK, the following diesel multiple units are fitted with modern MTU engines and could be candidates from a replacement power pack.

That is a total of 990 diesel engines.

As some of the Class 196 and Class 197 trains have yet to be delivered, I do wonder, if it would be sensible to deliver them as diesel-battery hybrid trains.

That is a lot of diesel engines, that could be replaced by MTU Hybrid Power Packs.

Conversions of other trains are also ongoing in Germany and Ireland.

This article from Rolls-Royce, is entitled  Hybrid Train Trials and gives a lot more details.

This is a quote from the article on fuel savings.

A fuel saving of 15 per cent is a
fantastic result and means that under
optimum conditions, 20 to 25
per cent should be possible. 

The savings certainly fit with Chiltern’s findings.

I have a few questions.

Can Locomotive Size PowerPacks Be Built?

As an engineer, I don’t see why not!

And there is certainly a need for them to cut diesel usage and carbon emissions with locomotives.

Conclusion

These conversions could be a very good interim solution.

 

July 25, 2021 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , | 22 Comments

Liverpool Stripped Of Unesco World Heritage Status

The title of this post, the same as that of this article on the BBC.

This is the first paragraph under the picture.

Liverpool has been stripped of its World Heritage status after a UN committee found developments threatened the value of the city’s waterfront.

Liverpool politicians seem united against the action.

I wonder, if the UNESCO committee are a load of snobs, as you should judge Liverpool not as one but a vast string of waterfront sites and buildings.

This picture was taken from a Birkenhead ferry.

It is a very ordinary picture, as it doesn’t show the two cathedrals on the hills behind.

Since, I left Liverpool University in the 1960s, there have been several developments at the Pier Head.

The Albert Dock complex with the Tate Liverpool has been created.

  • The Leeds and Liverpool Canal has been extended in front of The Three Graces to reach the Albert Dock.
  • The Liverpool One Shopping Centre has been built on the behind the Three Graces as an extension to Liverpool’s main Shopping Centre.
  • Liverpool City Museum has been built between the Albert Dock complex and The Three Graces.
  • There are statues everywhere including to the Beatles and Billy Fury. I saw both in performance.
  • There is the Memorial to the Battle of the Atlantic.
  • The Pier Head and Ferry Terminal has been completely rebuilt.
  • There is a Cruise Terminal capable of taking the largest cruise ships.
  • The new Everton Stadium will be built a couple of hundred metres to the left of the distinctive Liver Building.

To me, the most unusual is the Leeds and Liverpool Canal extended in front of The Three Graces. But that allowed narrow boats to sail between Leeds and the Albert Dock.

Conclusion

It is a site, where most people can spend a couple of days.

Should Liverpool Be A World Heritage Site?

Go spend two days there and then decide.

 

 

 

July 21, 2021 Posted by | World | , , , , , | 15 Comments

Zhengzhou Henan: Chest-High Flooding Hits China Trains And Roads

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the the BBC.

This is the first two paragraphs.

Roads and subway stations have been submerged across China’s Henan province as heavy rain has brought severe floods.

One region in Henan has recorded 40cm (15 inches) of rainfall. In Zhengzhou, the city’s entire subway system was forced to close.

I feel sorry for those that died and their friends and families, not only for their loses, but also because they will have probably no say in the stopping of building of hundreds of coal-fired power station, which are certainly one of the factors in all the extreme weather around the world.

Let’s hope at COP26, if the Chinese turn up, other nations make the point that their pro-global warming policies are killing their own people.

 

July 21, 2021 Posted by | Energy, Transport | , , | 3 Comments