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Rail News: Communication and Signal

Updates from GE, The Andersons, Wi-Tronix, Knorr-Bremse, Ritron, RailRunner and MISCOR

• GE Transportation introduced the PowerHaul engine and locomotive earlier this week at InnoTrans 2008 in Berlin, Germany. The 16-cylinder, 3,700-horsepower engine will power GE's new global diesel-electric PowerHaul Locomotive Series. The engine is designed to reduce PowerHaul Locomotive fuel usage up to 9 percent compared with conventional locomotives. The PowerHaul Locomotive is based on the Evolution® Series locomotive platform, which was introduced in 2005.

• The Andersons Inc. has opened a new rail-car repair shop in Ogden, Utah, on the site of Patriot Rail Corp.'s Utah Central Railway subsidiary — the second car shop The Andersons has opened this year on a Patriot Rail property. In March, The Andersons opened a shop in Anaconda, Mont., on the Butte, Anaconda & Pacific Railway's property. The shops provide maintenance and repair services on cars managed by The Andersons and owned by third parties.

• Wi-Tronix® L.L.C. obtained an order from BNSF Railway Co. for more than 800 locomotive remote monitoring systems. BNSF will deploy the systems on GE AC4400, GE Dash 9 and EMD SD70MAC locomotives. Installations will begin next month and conclude in mid-2009. The railroad will use Wi-Tronix's Wi-Tracker™ to maximize locomotive asset utilization and monitor fuel usage.

• Knorr-Bremse and Russian Railways RZD have established a joint venture to manufacture braking systems that meet the railroad's requirements. Knorr-Bremse will be responsible for operational management of the joint venture and will be the majority shareholder. Knorr-Bremse also reached a five-year braking system agreement with Korean rolling stock manufacturer Hyundai Rotem. Knorr-Bremse will supply brake equipment for about 1,500 cars. The agreement marks the second long-term commitment between the two companies following a pact forged in 2006.

• Ritron Inc.'s locomotive radio has received an Association of American Railroads rating per AAR S-5702 section 3.2.4 for shock and vibration. Available in one- and two-piece remote-head models, the radio features adjustable RF transmit power output of 10 to 50 watts, and can be used in wideband (25 kHz) or narrowband (12.5 kHz) operation.

• Intermodal transport system provider RailRunner N.A. Inc. appointed Daniel Renzella chief financial officer. He most recently was CFO of Azure Dynamics Corp. Renzella previously served as CFO for Solectria and CFO for Azure, and held various financial management posts for aerospace and technology firms.

• MISCOR Group Ltd. has acquired Visalia Electric Motor Shop Inc., which repairs, maintains and overhauls motors and generators. The acquisition will expand the wind-generation repair and maintenance capabilities of Magnetech Industrial Services, which is part of MISCOR's Repair, Remanufacturing and Manufacturing division.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 9/24/2008