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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Updates from GE Transportation, RailAmerica Operations Shared Services, Balfour Beatty, RailComm, Tideworks Technology and Invensys Rail


• GE Transportation recently reached an agreement with China’s CSR Qishuyan Locomotive Co. Ltd. to provide 300 locomotive assemblies for Chinese HXN5 mainline locomotives produced by CSR Qishuyan that feature GE’s Evolution® Series diesel engines. The agreement follows an order GE obtained in 2005 from China’s Ministry of Railways to supply 300 Evolution Series mainline locomotives. Meanwhile, GE also announced it formed a joint venture with CSR Qishuyan Locomotive to develop, build and service Evolution Series locomotive diesel engines in China. The joint venture is scheduled to launch operations in late 2011, when the companies will begin assembling, testing and overhauling engine components, such as power assemblies and turbochargers, in China. During a second phase beginning in 2013, GE and CSR will begin assembling, testing and overhauling engines and components.

• RailAmerica subsidiary RailAmerica Operations Shared Services has expanded its American Rail Dispatching Center® rail dispatching services beyond the RailAmerica family of railroads. The subsidiary now is providing dispatching services to the Grenada Railway and Natchez Railway in Mississippi. The dispatching center now provides services for 32 short line and regional railroads in 32 states. The center provides both dark and signalized dispatching for freight and passenger operations. As part of its system, RailAmerica Operations Shared Services also offers a centralized emergency response plan for all railroads it dispatches.

• Balfour Beatty Rail Inc. has completed a “landmark” project, according to the firm — the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Gold Line Eastside extension, which opened for service Nov. 15. Balfour Beatty designed, installed and tested the system components, including signals, communications, traction power and overhead catenary systems. The six-mile light-rail line features eight new stations, two of which are underground, and 1.7 miles of underground track.

• RailComm Inc. has installed a wireless remote control system for Union Pacific Railroad’s Roper Yard in Salt Lake City. The system remotely controls 17 power switches from two centrally located, interconnected push-button control panels located within the yard. RailComm also established a point-to-multipoint wireless data communications network featuring its RADiANT™ Data Radio technology, linking the power switch machines to two control panels.

• Tideworks Technology obtained a contract from CSX Intermodal to install a terminal operating system at Evansville Western Railway’s Northwest Ohio Terminal, which is scheduled to open in late 2010. Tideworks will provide its Automated Gate System and GateVision® solutions.

• Invensys Rail Ltd. recently announced that Managing Director Alistair McPhee will leave the company at year’s end. He joined the firm in 2002 as project director and became managing director in 2006. McPhee has overseen the growth of the company in the UK, as well as export markets in Europe and the Far East. General Manager of Core Markets Mark Wild will serve as acting managing director.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 11/18/2009