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Rail News: Passenger Rail

California DOT converts locomotive to cleaner-diesel 'Repower' unit


Later this month, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) plans to introduce an environmentally friendly locomotive for its Amtrak California services. On July 22, the department will unveil the cleaner-diesel locomotive at Sacramento Valley Station.

Electro-Motive Diesel Inc. (EMD) has upgraded a Model F59PHI locomotive built in October 2001 into a 710ECO™ Repower unit, which features microprocessor-controlled engine technology designed to reduce emissions, increase fuel economy and boost reliability. The Repower unit meets the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Tier 2 emissions standard — two levels “cleaner” than the model requires, according to Caltrans.
The unit already has begun operating between Sacramento and the Bay Area along Amtrak California’s Capitol Corridor route. Caltrans plans to convert Amtrak California’s entire fleet of 15 F59PHI locomotives to Repower units, which would reduce emissions by about 50 percent, department officials believe.
The locomotive conversion is a joint effort between Caltrans, Amtrak, EMD, the EPA, Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority, California Air Resources Board, Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District and Bay Area Air Quality Management District.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 7/16/2009