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<< Rail News Home: Mechanical

3/14/2005    Freight News

Rail News: Mechanical

CPR expects to spend less green by acquiring Green Goat locomotives

In November, RailPower Technologies Corp. announced a Class I had agreed to purchase 35 Green Goat® hybrid locomotives during the next four years. Now, the locomotive builder is identifying the purchaser: Canadian Pacific Railway.

This year, CPR plans to convert seven existing switchers to 2,000-horsepower Green Goats and conduct long-term tests. If the hybrid units meet certain performance requirements, such as handling adverse winter conditions, the Class I will convert another 28 locomotives between 2006 and 2008. ALSTOM Transport will lease space at CPR's Calgary, Alberta, shops and perform the conversions.

The Class I currently operates 220 low-horsepower switchers, most of which were built in the 1950s and are becoming difficult to repair because components are scarce, CPR officials said in a prepared statement. Last year, CPR tested a Green Goat during winter months in Vancouver, British Columbia; Calgary, Alberta; and Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan.

"Our studies indicate operating cost savings approaching $4 million annually should we acquire all 35 Green Goats," said CPR Senior Vice President of Operations Neal Foot. "In addition, the capital cost is significantly lower than acquiring new locomotives and is competitive with acquiring used conventional locomotives."

Featuring 130-horsepower diesel generators and long-life recyclable batteries, Green Goats are designed to reduce NOx and other emissions 50 percent to 80 percent, and cut fuel usage about 50 percent compared with conventional switchers.

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