Siemens Mobility to supply 125 diesel-electric locomotives

Amtrak’s said its new ALC-42s will reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by more than 89% and particulate matter by 95% compared to the models being retired. (Photo: Amtrak photo by Mike Armstrong)

Amtrak announced late last month that it has ordered 50 more Charge Locomotives from Siemens Mobility on top of an initial order of 75 of the diesel-electric units. According to Amtrak, the locomotives are an important part of its sustainability initiative and represent another major investment in its long-distance services, which is the backbone of its National Network.

The total contract value of up to $2 billion includes the original contract for $850 million and incorporates both the manufacturing as well as the long-term service agreement for technical support, spare parts and material supply.

A team from Amtrak and Siemens Mobility developed the ALC-42 locomotive series for heavier and longer trains traveling thousands of miles in a single trip. The new diesel-electric locomotives – designated as ALC-42 for “Amtrak Long-distance Charger, 4200 hp” – will primarily replace the company’s current P40 and P42 diesel-electric locomotives, which have a lower top speed and began service under different emissions standards 30-some years ago.

The rail service provider estimates its new ALC-42s will reduce nitrogen oxide emissions more than 89% and particulate matter by 95% compared to the models being retired, while consuming less fuel and reaching a top speed of 125 mph. The new faster, more efficient models are set to be in service by 2029.

In announcing the latest order, George Hull, Amtrak vice president and chief mechanical officer, stated the company is “dedicated to continuously seeking new and innovative technologies that provide solutions to meet transportation needs while reducing health and climate impacts.” He added, that Amtrak is “focused on being the solution to get people out of cars and planes and onto rail for greater emissions reductions.“

The locomotives will be built at the Siemens Mobility rail manufacturing hub in Sacramento, Calif., with their 4200 hp Tier 4-compliant diesel engines supplied by Cummins and manufactured in Seymour, Ind.

“We are delighted to continue our partnership with Amtrak as they continue to modernize their fleet with the latest in sustainable and intelligent rail technology,” said Michael Cahill, president of Rolling Stock, Siemens North America. “We are also grateful for Amtrak’s confidence in Siemens technology and applaud their continued efforts to provide their passengers with clean, green sustainable, safe and reliable travel experiences.”

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