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Ge participated in the research and development of hybrid locomotive in the United States

the "Green Goat" diesel electric shunting locomotive invented by Canadian railway power technology company

editor's note: today, the "green transportation" concept of the American railway system is increasingly prominent. For a long time, railway has been a more energy-saving and fuel-efficient transportation mode than highway. At present, the United States has set the content of Mo at 2% in the experiment. The strong support of the government in the field of alternative energy has made great progress in technologies such as hybrid transportation, which may make this "iron horse" greener

according to the American Railway Association, railway transportation has increased rapidly in recent years. Despite the impact of the financial crisis, the total volume of rail freight in the United States fell by 19% this year (based on the volume of train freight), but between 1990 and 2007, the total volume of rail freight in the United States increased by 47%; At the same time, in the past few years, railway transportation is more energy-saving and fuel-efficient than highway transportation, which also makes railway transportation more popular

recent development of hybrid trains

Stephen Forsberg, general director of the public affairs department of Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway (BNSF) in Fort Worth, Texas, said that in 1980, the average fuel consumption of a ton of goods transported by train was 1.05 liters/100 kilometers, but by 2007, this figure had fallen to 0.57 liters/100 kilometers, which saved nearly three times the gasoline than truck transportation

however, the potential of the train is not limited to this. The energy-saving effect of the new hybrid train will be better. In fact, the technology of hybrid electric train is not completely innovative. It uses most of them, but operates according to the actual utilization. Only the coil spring with circular spring material section is often used. It is the technology of today's hybrid electric vehicle. For example, the "regenerative braking" technology used by General Electric in its trains is equivalent to that used by the Prius hybrid electric vehicle produced by Toyota. The Citaro fuel cell transport bus of Mercedes Benz also laid the foundation for the railway energy-saving system. The railway energy-saving system was invented by vehicle projects, a hydrogen fuel cell technology company located in golden, Colorado, USA. In addition, Chevrolet Volt has created conditions for the train using ethanol as hybrid fuel, which was developed by alternative hybrid Train Technology Co., Ltd. (ahl-tech) in Milford, Ohio

when talking about the advantages of hybrid trains, Warren fratu, a spokesman for the U.S. Department of transportation, said: "hybrid technology can not only help trains achieve the purpose of energy conservation and emission reduction, but also provide sufficient power for train operation."

domestic support and opposition

Glen Mayfield, manager of the chemical energy system Laboratory of General Electric Company's global research, said that the challenges faced by the development of hybrid trains are the same as those of hybrid vehicles: people pay attention to power density and vehicle durability. However, because the load of train transportation is heavier and the vibration is stronger than that of highway transportation, people are more worried about this aspect. Indeed, hybrid trains can bring many advantages, but at the same time they will also bring new obstacles: high requirements for infrastructure and the need for strong government support. Union Pacific Railway, located in Omaha, Nebraska, is the largest railway company in the United States, with a total of 5150 kilometers of railway lines in the United States. Mike Eden, general manager of the company, said: "In fact, no single fuel can meet our needs, and the existing infrastructure must be upgraded when the railway system uses renewable energy. For example, if we want to support the railway system driven by hydrogen fuel cells, we must build a new infrastructure, because the hydrogen molecule is too small, and the existing pipelines cannot seal it, which is easy to cause leakage accidents." In addition, mot spokesman fratu added, "at present, the government has no incentive policies to stimulate the railway system to use alternative energy."

at the same time, reliability and safety are also issues that cannot be ignored. The "Green Goat" diesel electric shunting locomotive invented by railpower technologies of Canada is a very promising technology. It is mainly driven by batteries (even when the locomotive is unloaded), and its diesel engine is only used to charge batteries. Shunting locomotives are locomotives used in railway stations for loading or unloading and moving trains. Unfortunately, however, the "Green Goat" series batteries later caught fire in the accident, which forced the company to recall these batteries for remanufacture in May 2007 and upgrade its 59 locomotives. The accident cost the company $15.5 million in insurance policies, which eventually led to the company being acquired by R.J. Corman Railway Group Co., Ltd. in Kentucky in June. R. Bruce greck, executive general manager of J. Corman, said that although the future of "Green Goat" is full of variables, there is no doubt that hybrid trains will occupy a place in the future market

although the R & D cost of hybrid trains is much higher than that of traditional trains, train experts say that the advantages of the former in energy conservation and emission reduction will soon allow investors to recover costs. According to the report of the official of fortune (Forbes) magazine in 2006, the cost of a 2000 horsepower "Green Goat" is about 750000 US dollars, while the cost of an ordinary diesel shunting locomotive is 450000 US dollars; According to the US Environmental Protection Agency, the cost of arranging idle speed control technology alone is lower, only US $33000. Idle speed control technology refers to the technology that controls the speed of the locomotive when it is unloaded to save fuel consumption. However, the U.S. Department of energy Argonne National laboratory According to a report, "Green Goat" has a much better fuel saving effect than the latter two

other technologies that make trains greener

hybrid trains are not the only technologies that can bring green to this means of transportation. Some U.S. government agencies, such as the environmental protection agency and the Department of energy, are also working with companies to develop low sulfur diesel and biofuels. The executive director of the "Diesel Technology Forum" is confident that we can provide consumers with plastic materials that are safe and convenient, and can make people's lives more convenient. "Hybrid trains should be a combination of clean fuel, improved engine and emission control technology," said Alan Schafer, the executive director of the "diesel technology forum."

at the same time, the era of full electrification of trains and buses is also quietly coming. However, Arnold Miller, President of Vehicle Engineering Co., Ltd., said that the high cost is the biggest obstacle to the electrification process of passenger cars. If you want to build the supporting infrastructure, the cost per kilometer is about $6million to $8million

Fratu said that the U.S. Department of transportation, the American Public Transport Association and other investors are developing electric train drive plans, which will make trams more widely used in railway and highway transportation

General Electric Company's Mayfield said confidently, "hybrid power is a good way for us to enter the field of alternative energy, and it can enable us to use fuel resources more effectively. We are just starting now, and the future will be brighter."

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