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Rail News: Amtrak

Amtrak prepares to test new electric locomotives this summer


Amtrak will take a step closer to providing more reliable and energy efficient service along the Northeast Corridor (NEC) today when the first of its 70 advanced technology electric locomotives roll off a Siemens' assembly line.

The first three units of a $466 million order will be field tested this summer then enter revenue service this fall, Amtrak officials said in a press release. The locomotives feature a regenerative braking system and meet the latest federal rail safety regulations.

"The new Amtrak locomotives will help power the economic future of the Northeast region, provide more reliable and efficient service for passengers, and support the rebirth of rail manufacturing in America," said President and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Boardman.

The Amtrak Cities Sprinter (ACS-64) locomotives are being assembled at Siemens' Sacramento, Calif., plant, which is powered by renewable energy. Locomotive parts are being built at the company's plants in Norwood, Ohio; Alpharetta, Ga.; and Richland, Miss. Nearly 70 suppliers in more than 60 cities and 23 states are supplying components.

After the first three units are commissioned, Siemens will ramp up production of the remaining locomotives for monthly delivery through 2016.

The new locomotives will operate on Northeast Regional routes at speeds up to 125 mph along the NEC between Washington, D.C., New York City and Boston. They also will operate on Keystone Service routes at speeds up to 110 mph on the Keystone Corridor between Philadelphia and Harrisburg, Pa.

In addition, all long-distance trains operating on the NEC will be powered by the new locomotives.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 5/13/2013