Methane to hit the rails in Russia
The agreement is a result of recommendations and precise instructions issued by Russian president Vladimir Putin and the government of the Russian Federation. According to them, natural gas is to be used more widely in a number of branches of Russian economy, including railway transport.
As stated in the agreement, Gazprom will provide infrastructure to provide methane fuel for locomotives in accordance with appropriate specifications. RZD on its part will assign areas where the infrastructure can be located and will reorganise and properly equip its facilities in terms of natural-gas-powered railway fleet maintenance and repairs. Last but not least, Transmashholding and Sinara will provide methane-powered locomotives, their certification and aftermarket services.
Good to know
In 2011, an LNG-powered GT1h locomotive set a Guinness record by hauling 170 carriages with a combined weight of 16 thousand tonnes
The exact locomotives to be used are Transmashholding's TEM19 (manufactured at the company's plant in Briansk) and Sinara Group's GT1h, the latter powered by a 8,5 MW gas turbine. The turbine runs a power generator which then produces electricity for the locomotive's traction motor. The GT1h's LNG tank holds approx. 20 tonnes of fuel, providing up to 1000 km of range. The TEM19, on the other hand, is motivated by a 491GD piston combustion engine, fueled with LNG (liquefied natural gas) stored in a tank attached to the vehicle's frame.
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