Discussion related to commuter rail and rapid transit operations in the Chicago area including the South Shore Line, Metra Rail, and Chicago Transit Authority.

Moderators: JamesT4, metraRI

  by eolesen
 
Now that PTC is going live in the Chicago area, what's the future for ATS?

As I understand it, ATS is in addition to the block signalling that exists on the Kenosha and Harvard subs, and not tied into the signalling system itself aside from what's onboard the locomotive.
  by justalurker66
 
PTC overlays the existing signalling system. It is NOT a signalling system and does not replace any signalling system.
  by eolesen
 
Yes, I know... ATS also essentially overlays the existing block signaling system. All the induction plate does is send the restricting signal's indication to the shoe; when it's other than clear, the onboard triggers a bell in the cab, and the indication has to be acknowledged within X seconds by the engineer or else a penalty application gets initiated.

Why keep two systems that overlay the same system?...
  by Backshophoss
 
Both the ATSF and CNW ATS are overlayed on the wayside signals,are considered legacy systems that still work as the I-ETMS
gets overlayed with the wayside signals.
Believe the ATSF ATS is still used by Amtrak,Metrolink(SCAX) and the Railrunner(NMRX).
Most of the BNSF Transconn to LA still has the ATS overlay as does the ATSF passenger legacy route via La Junta
  by qboy
 
ATS and ATC will eventually go bye...bye! It may be a year away maybe less. They are still some issues that have to be worked out on the Harvard and Kenosha Subs with yard limits and the PTC. Right now PTC is the primary safety system. With ATC and ATS on their respective lines are the secondary when the PTC doesn't work right.
Last edited by qboy on Tue Jan 22, 2019 5:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
  by RRspatch
 
I heard the same thing on BNSF before I retired. Once PTC has gotten the bugs out and has settled down ATC would be removed from service. One thing to remember is that Amtrak pays for the upkeep of the ATS system on the southern trans-con as BNSF freights are no longer equipped for it.
  by Anthony
 
qboy wrote:ATS and ATC will eventually go bye...bye! It may be a year away maybe less. They are still some issues that have to be worked out on the Harvard and Kenosha Subs with yard limits and the PTC. Right now PTC is the primary safety system. With ATC and ATS on their respective lines are the secondary when the PTC doesn't work right.
Does this mean that when Amtrak is forced to detour over the Geneva Sub, they won't have to have a UP locomotive leading for the ATC cab signal requirements anymore once PTC is fully operational on that line (as PTC will replace ATC)?
  by eolesen
 
I had a UP conductor confirm that he'd heard ATS would be gone on the Kenosha and Harvard subs by 2021 if not sooner. For commuter service, that opens the door to power other than the current subfleet of F40PH's, as well as moving around of cab-cars.

For freight and Amtrak detours, a UP leader is needed on anything running on those subs, including the manifests and grain unit trains which head up to Janesville. Those always get SD40-2's with ATS that are added/cut-off at Proviso. Once ATS is gone, we can see run-thru power on the unit trains, and likely foreign power leaders.
Last edited by eolesen on Tue Jan 22, 2019 10:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  by eolesen
 
qboy wrote:They are still some issues that have to be worked out on the Harvard and Kenosha Subs with yard limits and the PTC.
Yep. I saw a track bulletin about that on the Harvard...
  by qboy
 
Anthony wrote: Does this mean that when Amtrak is forced to detour over the Geneva Sub, they won't have to have a UP locomotive leading for the ATC cab signal requirements anymore once PTC is fully operational on that line (as PTC will replace ATC)?
Eventually yes that would include seeing foreign power leading trains west past Proviso. Thats according to a couple managers and PTC people I've spoken too.
  by eolesen
 
Here's the track bulletin... the yard limits are at Barrington and Crystal Lake (including the junction on the McHenry Branch) respectively.

MP41.9
Code: Select all
FORM C NO. 49244     DECEMBER 04, 2018

PTC IS TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED ON THE HARVARD SUB
ON MT 1 BETWEEN YARD LIMIT SIGN MP 31.8 AND BLOCK 
SIGNAL AT MP 33.56, AND BETWEEN YARD LIMIT SIGN AT
MP 41.9 AND BLOCK SIGNAL AT MP 44.72.
PTC IS ALSO TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED ON THE HARVARD 
SUB ON MT 2 BETWEEN YARD LIMIT SIGN AT MP 31.04
AND BLOCK SIGNAL AT MP 32.81, AND YARD LIMIT SIGN 
AT MP 40.21 AND BLOCK SIGNAL AT MP 43.57.
WHILE SUSPENSION IS IN EFFECT, ENGINEERS OF TRAINS
OPERATING ON THE HARVARD SUB MUST CUT IN PTC AND 
ATS WHEN TAKING CHARGE OF THE TRAIN AND OPERATE
WITH BOTH SYSTEMS CUT IN.
WHEN OPERATING WITHIN THE ABOVE LIMITS, THE
ENGINEER MAY BE PROMPTED TO INDICATE ALIGNMENT OF
FACING POINT SWITCHES. FAILURE TO ANSWER A SWITCH
PROMPT DISPLAYED BY THE PTC SYSTEM WILL CAUSE THE
SYSTEM TO DISENGAGE AND THE MAP WILL NO LONGER BE 
DISPLAYED.
IF THE SYSTEM DISENGAGES, THE ENGINEER MUST 
IMMEDIATELY SLOW TO 15 MPH AND MAKE A TRACK
SELECTION BEFORE EXITING YARD LIMITS.
  by Tadman
 
eolesen wrote:I had a UP conductor confirm that he'd heard ATS would be gone on the Kenosha and Harvard subs by 2021 if not sooner. For commuter service, that opens the door to power other than the current subfleet of F40PH's, as well as moving around of cab-cars.
.
It might allow for the F59's to run UP, but aren't the MP's still restricted due to weight?

Also, what cab signals are on the Rock? Do those get removed as well?
  by eolesen
 
Bridges might still be a concern, although I thought it was the oldest of the old on the Kenosha which were the concern, and most of those will have been replaced by 2020.

I've been on OLS specials using SD70ACe's and C44-9W's, and would think the loading on those would be heavier than a MP36...
  by MetraBNSF
 
eolesen wrote:I had a UP conductor confirm that he'd heard ATS would be gone on the Kenosha and Harvard subs by 2021 if not sooner. For commuter service, that opens the door to power other than the current subfleet of F40PH's, as well as moving around of cab-cars.
Both 8400 and 8500 series cab cars operate on UP. But I think I saw on one of the threads years ago that certain locos can’t run with 8400s. I think it’s the MP36’s that can’t run with 8400s.
  by Engineer Spike
 
Metra doesn't have a dedicated fleet of locomotives for the ATS. I believe that the shoes are just bolted on, if the locomotive is run on those two routes. They do have a complicated cab signal system. There is a key switch in the cab. This allows the locomotives to run on C&NW, Burlington, and Rock Island cab signal systems. I can't remember if Milwaukee had cab signals left in service. There was the provision to run ATS too.