mbrproductions wrote: ↑Tue Jan 11, 2022 10:14 am
The T looking to things like battery-electrics just further proves that the MBTA has no intention of electrifying the lines, and who could blame them? With the fiscal fallout the T looks to be speeding towards right now its probably way too expensive for their own good, which is why the MBTA will probably just look for cleaner Diesel Locomotives
BandA wrote: ↑Tue Jan 11, 2022 7:42 am
Electric locomotives require new substations, new south-side service facilities, some additional catanery. And negotiation with Amtrak about use of their catenary.
Amtrak screwed over MARC with the prices they had to pay Amtrak to use their catenary, which is why they plan on replacing all their electrics with chargers, Amtrak will definitely pull the same thing off on the MBTA with the Providence Line
MBTA has far more leverage on the Providence Line since they own the track. Yes it's Amtrak's overhead, but it's all on MBTA property in the state of Massachusetts. The substation at Sharon physically has room to add additional electrical equipment and be expanded. MBTA is already looking at South Side maintenance facilities due to West Station potentially closing the Grand Junction for 4 years. Catenary can certainly be construction on the Dorchester and Stoughton Branches without too much difficulty, it's really the Newburyport/Rockport line that's the outlier. We're talking 5-10 years here to get everything done, and funding being available with the IIJA. Some of the big hurdles that have always stood in the way of electrification are crumbling away, and the political stance is favorable for not buying any more diesels. The MBTA board voted this way, it's not just advocates.
If you take a look at the BEMU RFI (link to it found in this thread
) it clearly lays out what they are doing, why they are doing it, and that a separate multi-mode RFI will come out. Keep in mind this is just an RFI, the MBTA wants to know what's out there so is gathering information on the subject. An RFI can be followed up by a procurement, or may just die on the vine. But take a read for yourself, they lay all the cards on the table. Some interesting snippets:
MBTA Battery-Electric RFI wrote:The board of the MBTA in 2020 directed staff to transform and decarbonize the current commuter rail service and move to a service similar to rapid transit providing all day substantially electrified service at intervals on its most dense corridors at 15-20 minute headways (referred to as regional/urban rail). Given the timeframes of rolling stock procurement and the urgency of the combined goals of fleet replacement and rail transformation, the MBTA is seeking a rapid information gathering process to facilitate its decision making, especially in the light of the passing of the 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA).
MBTA Battery-Electric RFI wrote:The MBTA is looking to replace the existing diesel hauled commuter rail fleet with a combination of:
• Battery Electric Multiple Units (BEMUs), to replace life-expiring locomotives and coaches in the medium term;
• Multi-Mode locomotives (some combination of battery, diesel, OCS powered electric traction with the capability to be modified in the future), to replace life-expiring locomotives and be fully compatible with the existing push/pull equipment.
This RFI will focus on Battery Electric Multiple Units. A separate RFI will be issued for Multi-Mode Locomotives. Both vehicles will be required to operate with existing overhead catenary systems.
MBTA Battery-Electric RFI wrote:The Rolling Stock should be capable of using overhead catenary power systems installed over most of each route, with battery-only operation over limited sections of track where catenary installation would be difficult or expensive. Battery recharging could be accomplished with high powered charging stations, layover facilities and/or in-motion charging using catenary power or regenerative braking. All battery charging recommendations need to be included with RFI.