• Next Locomotive For the T?

  • Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.
Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

Moderators: CRail, sery2831

  by mbrproductions
No, they are tier 0+, i'm pretty sure the only way to get an F40 to tier 4 is to run it on biodiesel haha :-D
meanwhile, the GP40MCs are tier 0 and the HSP46s are tier 3.
  by scratchyX1
ConstanceR46 wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 11:07 am I'd like to remind you that the replacing-electrics-with-chargers statement is still hearsay and hasn't been backed up by any official source so far.
yeah, Last I saw, MARC is happy with the Hippos, and aware the market will be flooded with slightly used electrics in a few years.
I think it's still planning on rebuilding the claremont branch, and stringing wires to riverside, for heavy work and layover instead of penn station.
  by west point
Again MARC needs electric motors for the Penn line . It would take 2 diesels on the Penn line commuter trains to meet the 125 speed requirements on the Penn line.
  by TrainFan1035
What i know for MBTA is they arent getting a new locmotive right now but they will be getting more multilevels to replace the single levels in the future
  by Trinnau
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.
  by mbrproductions
So It looks as if the MBTA is going to shift to a mixed Locomotive hauled and multiple unit operation, wonder why?
  by scratchyX1
My guess, locomotive hauled express commuter trains, and EMU for more frequent local Regional rail service.
Last edited by CRail on Wed Jan 12, 2022 11:39 pm, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Unnecessary quote removed.
  by mbrproductions
I wouldn't be surprised if they went with Electric Locomotives, like how they have been choosing Diesel Locomotives over DMUs for years now, the politics only care for electrification, whether it is locomotive hauled or multiple units is not really a big deal to them or the general public.
  by BandA
Why purchase more expensive Multi Unit equipment if you aren't going to take advantage of the ability to couple/uncouple the trains frequently?
  by type 7 3704
The push for EMUs is because of the significantly higher acceleration that EMUs can do because they have far more powered axles. On locals this could shave 30% off the trip time, as much of the travel time between stops is spent accelerating. Similar reason Caltrain went with EMUs for their electrification effort.

The MBTA has a lot of coaches on-hand though (including the fairly new Rotems), and some lines that may take a while to electrify, so it does make sense that they are also looking into dual-mode locomotives for those.
  by Commuterrail1050
This is just my opinion. I don’t believe the Mbta should be just electric. First, it’s too expensive. Plus the trains would be stuck without power in the wires. It’s happened to Amtrak many times already. However, the hybrid should be considered so that trains don’t get stuck when one source runs out. If it runs out of gas, use the battery power to allow the train to finish its trip before refueling. If the battery runs out, use the gas. I think you get my idea here.
  by Red Wing
Wow. Those things run out of fuel their out of service. unlike your car where you run out you can fill up and go again. With a Diesel you have to bleed the system to get fuel flowing and being no expert I highly doubt they do that in the field. The theory of losing electricity seams like a red herring to me. I've been on many trains that had mechanical issues, and that was with plenty of fuel in the tank.
  by BandA
I believe diesel-electric locomotives are cheaper than electric locomotives. Isn't that still true? Even though the electric locomotives are much simpler.

The MBTA should be purchasing whatever is going to provide the lowest total cost of ownership. If it is a dead heat, the electric will probably have lower emissions. A battery-electric (with a large battery for more than say 1/4 mile) is going to be the most expensive solution.
  by mbrproductions
Electrics being zero emissions is an illusion because they don't have smoke coming directly out of them like diesels do. In reality the electricity to power electrified railroads is most likely coming from an inefficient power plant, which emits tons of carbon into the air, and thats likely the way its going to be for a long time from now. Diesel-Electrics are in fact cheaper than Electrics, and while yes, the electrics are simpler and easier to maintain, that comes at the cost of now having your entire railroad network more difficult and expensive to maintain thanks to all the catenary poles, wires, substations etc.
  by Trinnau
Electrics can be powered by renewable sources though, such as solar or wind, in addition to fossil-fuel plants. Yes it's only a partial solution until the entire power grid is "sustainable" because you still may be getting power from a "dirty" plant. But a diesel engine is only a fossil-fuel source and has no alternative.

And the MBTA should be purchasing the locomotive that provides the best combination of meeting the service need (reliable, good acceleration, enough power, maintainable, etc), working toward reducing emissions, and cost. I'd rather they buy something more expensive that does the job than something cheaper that doesn't.