The Anonymous Widower

UK Diesel-Battery Hybrid Locomotive Lease Fleet Ordered

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

This is a visualisation of the CBD90 from Clayton Equipment.

It certainly looks purposeful!

This is the introductory paragraph.

Beacon Rail Leasing has awarded Clayton Equipment a contract to supply 15 diesel-battery locomotives, with options for more to be ordered over three years.

These points are made.

  • The locomotive is mainly for industrial shunting applications.
  • These are the largest locomotives built in the UK for twenty years.
  • It has an onboard diesel to charge the batteries.
  • Batteries can also be charged directly from a three-phase supply.

Beacon’s CEO is quoted as saying

It was seeing increased demand for lower emissions, new technology, more capacity and cost-effective assets in a fast-changing environment.

It looks like Beacon Rail Leasing and Clayton Equipment have come up with a product that suits a lot of customers.

  • Some will surely be used in mines, quarries, refineries, chemical works and steel works.
  • Will some be used in large rolling stock depots, where they can provide an environmentally-friendly method of moving trains?
  • Some shunting locomotives in the UK, like the Class 08 locomotive, were built in the 1950s.
  • Some train operating companies have a small fleet, of these veterans.
  • In Battery-Powered Shunter Ready To Begin Testing, I described how one Class 08 locomotive was being converted to diesel-electric hybrid power.
  • As Beacon has interests in Europe, could some of these powerful shunting locomotive could be going for export?
  • Could some end up in the large mines of Africa, Australia and the Americas?

From this article on Railway Gazette, which is entitled Steelworks Locomotive Order, it appears five CBD90 locomotives have already been ordered by Tata Steel for their steelworks at Port Talbot.

This video shows one of the locomotives under test.

I shall be interested to see, where the new shunting locomotives end up.

The Leasing Model

When we started Metier Management Systems in the 1970s and developed Artemis, which was the world’s first small and powerful project management system, we used to lease systems to our customers. These were often large engineering or other companies for whom the leasing model was very convenient.

It certainly did us well!


May 22, 2020 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Battery-Powered Shunter Ready To Begin Testing

The title of this post is the same as that of an article in Issue 903 of Rail Magazine. The article describes how 08649, which is a Class 08 shunter is being converted to diesel-electric hybrid power.

  • It appears, that the shunter wasn’t in the best of condition.
  • A 6.8 litre John Deere diesel engine is to be fitted, which will be enhanced to Euro Stage 5.
  • Tesla battery packs with a capacity of 300 kWh will be fitted.
  • A bespoke control system is being developed.

The shunter is to be tested on the Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway, when COVID-19 restrictions allow.

The reason for doing the work is not outlined in the article, although it does say this.

The work has been carried out by Meteor Power Ltd., which won a contract last year as part of the Department of Transport’s Innovation Carbon Reduction programme.

According to Wikipedia, 996 shunters were produced with another nearly two hundred similar shunters in other classes. Eighty two are deemed to have been preserved in Wikipedia,  with sixty or so labelled as operational. Two operational examples are on the Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway.

As some of the preserved examples are used by successful heritage railways and even commercial companies like Bombardier, perhaps Meteor have identified several possible commercial conversions.

Or it could be that Meteor want to show how their technology can reduce a company’s carbon emissions by re-putting a diesel engine with a hybrid transmission in a railway engine or a piece of heavy plant.

April 21, 2020 Posted by | Transport | , , , , | 1 Comment