Video of Acela II hitting 165mph in testing

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Video of Acela II hitting 165mph in testing
Posted by longhorn1969 on Friday, May 22, 2020 10:06 AM

https://media.amtrak.com/media-images/amtrak-continues-to-advance-testing-of-new-acela-fleet-in-pueblo-colo/

No longer vaporware, its has the legs to run 165mph. It has TGV roots, so it will be loafing at the normal 135 mph it will see on the NEC.

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, May 22, 2020 10:14 AM

longhorn1969
No longer vaporware, its has the legs to run 165mph.

There was never any question that it had the legs.  The only question was whether we needed to pay for Usain Bolt legs to run a Boston marathon.  (Personally I am glad they did, and even gladder that I don't have to account to anyone for having done so...)

It has TGV roots, so it will be loafing at the normal 135 mph it will see on the NEC.

I assure you that it will see much more than 135mph as 'normal'.  Look at the descriptions of some of the projects in place, for example, in the Princeton Junction area (not coincidentally where much of the 165mph+ testing is conducted).

The concern, again, is that the overall destination-to-destination speed will be nowhere near what the 'potential' of the train would otherwise indicate.  And absent a trillion-dollar expenditure just on a few Northeastern points, that is not likely to improve by the equivalent of more than a few minutes during the high-speed service lifetime of the new trains.

The good news is that we'll have trainsets that can make best use of any improvements that are actually made...

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Posted by JPS1 on Friday, May 22, 2020 11:04 AM
What other types of testing takes place at the Colorado facility?  And who pays for it?
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Posted by blue streak 1 on Friday, May 22, 2020 11:24 AM

Will this test of set #1 to 165 qualify set #2 that is now on the NEC to 165 ?  Or will Amtrak need to test set #2 icrementaly to 165 on each NEC track segment ?

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, May 22, 2020 3:40 PM

Fast Loop speed is limited to nominal 165mph.  Even the old Acelas got over 170 in the Princeton Junction testing (I had a speedo pic substantiating it) so I suspect there will be additional NEC-based testing once the instrumentation in Pueblo reveals no peculiar behavior or parts problems... remember that to run 160 the equipment will have to be tested over 176mph...

Presumably for present purposes testing the 'type' properly will only have to be done once, and would not have to be repeated for every set as part of their commissioning, or repeated at different places on the Corridor.

TTCI charges for use of the facility, much as it will for testing 5550 when the time comes.  Presumably either Amtrak (meaning essentially the government) pays this, or the builder does as part of the $2.4B contracted cost of the trainsets (which of course the Government is paying)

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Posted by GERALD L MCFARLANE JR on Friday, May 22, 2020 4:53 PM

Overmod

~SNIP~

TTCI charges for use of the facility, much as it will for testing 5550 when the time comes.  ~SNIP~ 

Pretty sure they won't have to take 5550 to TTCI unless they CHOOSE to do so.

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, May 22, 2020 4:57 PM

GERALD L MCFARLANE JR
Overmod

~SNIP~

TTCI charges for use of the facility, much as it will for testing 5550 when the time comes.  ~SNIP~

Pretty sure they won't have to take 5550 to TTCI unless they CHOOSE to do so.

Wasn't that pretty obvious?

There is no place else in the country where any serious high-speed road-testing of a T1 (other than on its roller rig) would be practical.  Why do you think the instrumented driver centers are such a needed 'project'? 

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Posted by JPS1 on Friday, May 22, 2020 7:27 PM

Thanks for the insights.  Who operates the trains or equipment that are being tested at the test facility?

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Posted by MidlandMike on Friday, May 22, 2020 10:38 PM

AAR operates the Pueblo test center.

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, May 23, 2020 10:22 AM

MidlandMike
AAR operates the Pueblo test center.

It's more complicated than that.  The Federal DOT actually owns the TTC facility, and TTCI (Transportation Technology Center, Inc.), which is a subsidiary of AAR, 'administers and operates' it under contract with the FRA.

The thing is, I find I don't know the exact answer to the question JPS1 was asking, which is "who was operating the trainsets during the 165mph running".  The actual hand 'on the throttle' might have been a representative of the builder, or Amtrak, or from TTCI; I'd be reasonably sure a TTCI 'pilot' would supervise in the cab, but might not run the equipment directly.

I suspect Jeff Moller at AAR would be the person best qualified to give a definitive answer for this specific Acela II question.  (He's at (202) 639-2375 or jmoller@aar.org)

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Posted by 243129 on Monday, May 25, 2020 9:15 AM

.

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Posted by 243129 on Monday, May 25, 2020 9:39 AM

Overmod
The only question was whether we needed to pay for Usain Bolt legs to run a Boston marathon.

We (the taxpayer) do not.

Overmod
The concern, again, is that the overall destination-to-destination speed will be nowhere near what the 'potential' of the train would otherwise indicate.

So why bother?

Overmod
And absent a trillion-dollar expenditure just on a few Northeastern points, that is not likely to improve by the equivalent of more than a few minutes during the high-speed service lifetime of the new trains.

Absent a trillion-dollar expenditure, which is not necessary, for minimal results?

Overmod
The good news is that we'll have trainsets that can make best use of any improvements that are actually made...

Tell that to the taxpayers.

 

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