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Railpower Receives EPA Certification for Three-Engine Road Switcher

Railpower Technologies Corp., a developer of specialized energy technology systems for the transportation industry and manufacturers of the Green Goat hybrid switcher, has obtained US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certification for its three-engine road switcher locomotive (model RP20-BD).

Railpower is the first locomotive manufacturer to obtain EPA certification for a three-engine genset locomotive.

The RP20 locomotives come in two models, using two or three 667-hp genset engines. (Earlier post.) The two-genset model (RP20-BH) is a hybrid, operating on both the twin generators and a bank of valve regulated lead acid batteries (700 VDC nominal, 600 Ah, 500 kW).

Obtaining EPA certification for our road switchers further validates the environmental benefits of our technology. Our three-engine configuration offers flexibility in power utilization which results in significant fuel savings and the highest emissions reduction in the industry. We believe we offer the cleanest road switcher locomotive available to North American railroads.

—José Mathieu, President and CEO of Railpower

Railpower claims that its RP-Series hybrid road switchers can provide fuel savings of up to 35% and reduce NOx and other emissions by approximately 80%. The three-engine non-hybrid RP switchers can provide fuel savings of up to 25%

On 14 November, Railpower reached an agreement with a major customer in order to accelerate contract payment terms on its locomotives, subject to certain conditions. Among these conditions was obtaining EPA certification for its RP20-BD road switcher locomotives at the latest by January 15, 2007.


fyi CO2

Good to hear some R&D is happening in the train transportation sector. Curious who the major rail customer is, and when they will begin publicizing the PR of this technology against their rivals.

Tim Russell

I had heard on a railroad website Union Pacific has ordered a 100 of their "Green Goat" hybrid switchers and some are in service now. One nice thing about it aside from the reduction in fuel use is they take old loco's and reuse the frame and other components to build their new loco's. Railroad locomotives have a very long lifespan (40+ years in some cases, a short line near my parents town uses ones that were last built in 1963) so getting the older "prime mover" diesel engine out of service while recycling the rest is very helpful.

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