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Wabtec/GE 6 Cylinder loco finally to be built?

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Wabtec/GE 6 Cylinder loco finally to be built?
Posted by YoHo1975 on Friday, April 23, 2021 12:27 PM

It looks like Wabtec has found a replacement for the much hated Gensets in the form of their Tier 4 GEVO in 6 cylinder form.

 

https://ww2.arb.ca.gov/sites/default/files/2020-12/CC.BCC%20-%20GE-Wabtec%20ET23%20Switcher%20Approval%20Letter%20Dec%2012.23.20.pdf

 

Loconotes had a brief blurb about this. UP seems content with their SD40+Slug combos on the Roseville Hump, but it will be interesting to see if they bite. Or, Cal Northern and Sierra Northern might. Just thinking of the Sacramento area.

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Posted by SD60MAC9500 on Friday, April 23, 2021 1:15 PM
 

YoHo1975

It looks like Wabtec has found a replacement for the much hated Gensets in the form of their Tier 4 GEVO in 6 cylinder form.

 

https://ww2.arb.ca.gov/sites/default/files/2020-12/CC.BCC%20-%20GE-Wabtec%20ET23%20Switcher%20Approval%20Letter%20Dec%2012.23.20.pdf

 

Loconotes had a brief blurb about this. UP seems content with their SD40+Slug combos on the Roseville Hump, but it will be interesting to see if they bite. Or, Cal Northern and Sierra Northern might. Just thinking of the Sacramento area.

 

This appears to be an updated model of the proposed ES23B GETS presented back in 2008 which would use a GEVO-6 as well.

 
 
Rahhhhhhhhh!!!!
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Posted by YoHo1975 on Saturday, April 24, 2021 2:09 PM

Difference being that they are now looking to recycle genset frames. 

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, April 24, 2021 2:27 PM

Key here, also, is that there are a whole lot more GEVOs in service now, and there are relatively few differences between internal parts for a six and twelve (considering how the connecting rods and big-end 'master-rod' bearings are arranged).

I have to wonder whether cylinder-interruption technology could be implemented on these engines at idle speed... Devil

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, April 24, 2021 2:28 PM

YoHo1975
Difference being that they are now looking to recycle genset frames

Weren't many genset frames already taken from older locomotives like early Geeps?

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Posted by SD60MAC9500 on Sunday, April 25, 2021 10:49 AM
 

Found it! Here's a diagram of the original ES23B from the GE presentation back in 2008.

 

 
Rahhhhhhhhh!!!!
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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, April 25, 2021 11:49 AM

SD60MAC9500
Found it! Here's a diagram of the original ES23B from the GE presentation back in 2008.

Nice work!

It occurs to me that some of the issue here ... including 're-recycling' frames that have been converted for multiengine genset use ... is that the packaging for the GEVO-6 requires the same carbody length as for the full 12-cylinder version, and a bit more hood height (the latter not critical in the drawing, but perhaps significant if the engine is to be Tier 4 final compliant without SCR).   I'd expect much of the crankcase construction to be similar as well, if for no other reason than maximum parts commonality.

Many of the 'rebuilder' promotional material has stressed the nominal advantages of using high-speed engines (now usually 1800rpm designs), often shorter and lighter abd sharing parts and support with other markets, for the sorts of applications the genset locomotives were supposed to 'optimize'.  It has generally seemed to me that having the Essl-like capability to scale actual combustion power is more valuable than running the larger engine at comparable 'turndown' -- but good engineering and marketing might overcome that.  The greater question is the value in the 2300hp four-axle market in general ... and a number of these posts suggest the relative great utility of a GEVO-6 rebuild as 'slug mother' to a range of battery and other energy-storage approaches...

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Monday, April 26, 2021 12:52 AM

Has anyone looked into the increased gyroscopic effects of a higher  speed engine going around curves ?

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Monday, April 26, 2021 10:02 AM

Consider that the Maybach engines used in the SP/D&RGW torque-converter drive locomotives in the early 1960's maxed out at 1585 RPM and apparently did not have tracking problems based on the hgher RPM.

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by YoHo1975 on Monday, April 26, 2021 11:53 AM

Overmod

 

It occurs to me that some of the issue here ... including 're-recycling' frames that have been converted for multiengine genset use ... is that the packaging for the GEVO-6 requires the same carbody length as for the full 12-cylinder version, and a bit more hood height (the latter not critical in the drawing, but perhaps significant if the engine is to be Tier 4 final compliant without SCR).   I'd expect much of the crankcase construction to be similar as well, if for no other reason than maximum parts commonality.

Many of the 'rebuilder' promotional material has stressed the nominal advantages of using high-speed engines (now usually 1800rpm designs), often shorter and lighter abd sharing parts and support with other markets, for the sorts of applications the genset locomotives were supposed to 'optimize'.  It has generally seemed to me that having the Essl-like capability to scale actual combustion power is more valuable than running the larger engine at comparable 'turndown' -- but good engineering and marketing might overcome that.  The greater question is the value in the 2300hp four-axle market in general ... and a number of these posts suggest the relative great utility of a GEVO-6 rebuild as 'slug mother' to a range of battery and other energy-storage approaches...

 

 

I agree, I have to wonder how they're going to quite fit this all in a tier 4 package on the 4 axle EMD and Uboat frames they would be getting. 

 

As for the market for such a device. Well, prior to the last few years, There seemed to be a reasonably robust market for EMD rebuilds. It's hard to track since companies like NS did their own custom rebuilds, so even if they were effectively ECO upgrades, they weren't literally and so don't count the same. And of course BNSF and UP doing massive upgrades of their mid HP 645 and 710 based fleets.

The gensets pushed out a lot of switchers and older 4 axle power and were not well loved, so one has to presume they are needed to some extent.

But, is there value in that platform? Or is it just as easy to have some combination of High Speed Diesel at Tier 4 along with assorted remanufactuered 710 and 645 based platforms paired with battery power and/or slugs.

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, April 26, 2021 12:24 PM

YoHo1975
But, is there value in that platform? Or is it just as easy to have some combination of High Speed Diesel at Tier 4 along with assorted remanufactuered 710 and 645 based platforms paired with battery power and/or slugs.

In my opinion much of it is going to come down to whether RPS or companies like it build a special battery or dual-mode-lite version that is short on four axles and useful as a road slug as well as 'clean power source'.

The present markets for battery assistance are highly in favor of "two 4400hp road units sandwiching a battery/dual-mode-lite/road slug module -- with or without a full cab -- on the freight side, and a typical Charger or Spirit with the battery assistance module on the commuter, and perhaps passenger side.  It is my opinion, which may be radically wrong, that once you have the hybrid battery, most of the objections to conventional 'truck engine' types of Tier 4 final or higher "genset" engines become much less, especially with regard to optimized PSR 'flat switching' performance (which I think is still not fully recognized by these battery switcher designers)... all these things making a fixed 2300hp maximum single power unit a bit large to be 'assisted charging' and a bit small for most other current road uses for which expensive new or extensively-rebuilt power would be purchased.

We might note that until more restrictive laws require prompt retirement or abolition of grandfathered 'tier 0' locomotives, or eliminate any chance of carbon credits or cap-and-trade nonsense being traded to keep such locomotives operational, it will still be cheaper in many ways to use things like deturboed 645s as the 'prime movers' for battery-assisted consists, and pass any obvious increased fuel consumption along to "customers".  

Thirty years ago there was a popular market for ~2300hp road locomotives on many railroads.  I get the impression very few of these are still used there, and in places where the physical railroad plant can't or doesn't handle six-motor power gracefully, locomotives with higher engine hp are preferred (there being little advantage in developing an eight-cylinder GEVO for this niche, and none at all in expanding the 6 to an inline-8).  The great job that has to be made by WAB-whoever-has-the-locomotive-business is going to be to demonstrate that a hybrid eight-axle consist of 2300 engine hp (running at reasonably constant speed range, dividing output between charging/dual-mode power generation and traction) and capable battery is functionally equal at lower fuel burn to a 12-cylinder road locomotive of generally flexible and fungible application nearly system-wide.

It can be done, I think.  It would be fun to try.  I wouldn't want to stake my family's well-being on making it a career priority, though... Whistling

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Posted by rdamon on Monday, April 26, 2021 4:56 PM

blue streak 1

Has anyone looked into the increased gyroscopic effects of a higher  speed engine going around curves ?

 

Interesting thought.

Guess they could always run two units joined at the tail :)

 

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Posted by Erik_Mag on Monday, April 26, 2021 10:30 PM

Formula 1 cars at one time had V-12's pushing 10k rpm or higher, with much faster turning rates than a locomotive. Could also bring up the UP Big Blows, where the shaft was probably turning in excess of 3,000 rpm.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, April 27, 2021 5:44 AM

The ratio of the weight of the rotating mass (the mass that is actually rotating, not including valves, pistons, etc.) to the total weight of the locomotive (or race-car and driver) would indicate that the gyroscopic force would be negligible.   But obviously greater for the race-car than any locomotive.

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Posted by BaltACD on Tuesday, April 27, 2021 8:12 AM

Erik_Mag
Formula 1 cars at one time had V-12's pushing 10k rpm or higher, with much faster turning rates than a locomotive. Could also bring up the UP Big Blows, where the shaft was probably turning in excess of 3,000 rpm.

Back in the 3 liter days of F1 a number of engines were approaching 20K RPM.  

There very few if any vehicles that change direction faster than F1 race cars - just watch them drive through the varios L-R-L or vice versa chicanes that have been placed in tracks to slow the cars down from the absolute speed potential through a following high speed turn.

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