Siemens Favored for Locomotive Contract


An Illinois Department of Transportation official is recommending that Siemens be awarded the contract to build 32 to 35 diesel locomotives for use on Amtrak routes in the Midwest, California and Washington state.

The recommendation was made by William Grunloh, Chief Procurement Officer for IDOT, which is the lead agency for the  joint procurement of the locomotives.  Also participating are state departments of transportation for California, Michigan, Missouri and Washington.

The distribution of the locomotives is expected to be 21 units for Midwest corridor service, six to California and eight to Washington.

The number of locomotives acquired hinges on the availability of funding. The states hold options for up to 225 additional locomotives.

Funding the initial purchase will be the Federal Railroad Administration and California Proposition 1B bonds.

Providing final offers were Electro-Motive Diesel, Siemens and MotivePower. IDOT found that Siemens had the highest combined “responsiveness” and price scores.
The locomotives will meet the Next Generation Equipment Committee’s PRIIA 305-005 Locomotive Specification, which was released in July 2012.

The units will be EPA Tier 4 compliant and feature AC traction with a streamlined car body. They will have electronically controlled air brakes and blended air/dynamic braking and will be capable of MU and push-pull operation.

The specification calls for sufficient power for two units to move eight bi-level coaches at 125 mph with a minimum of 600kW of head end power for heating and cooling the coaches. The trucks may be of four- or six-wheel design.
EMD’s proposed 4,700 horsepower F125 was to be powered by a Caterpillar C175-20 engine.

MotivePower’s proposal has not been disclosed, but it is thought that it would have been based on the HSP46, a 4,600 horsepower locomotive being built for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. The HSP46 uses a Tier 3 General Electric GEVO-12 engine and GE AC  electrical equipment.

Siemens and engine builder Cummins have announced a partnership. The units are expected to use a Cummins QSK95 engine rated at more than 4,000 horsepower.

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