Rail Operations (UK) Limited has signed a framework agreement with Stadler for the supply of 30 Class 93 tri-mode locomotives, of which an initial batch of 10 locomotives will be due for delivery in early 2023.
The Class 93 is a Bo-Bo mixed-traffic locomotive based on Stadler’s Class 68 and Class 88 locomotives that have been operating successfully in the UK for some years. Described in detail in the Rail Engineer article Re-engineering Rail Freight (issue 185, July August 2020), it is capable of reaching higher speed than the previous ones– 110mph instead of 100mph.
Stadler’s first tri-mode locomotive has three different power sources. In electric mode, it is able to run on 25kV AC overhead lines with a power of 4,000 kW. In addition, the locomotive features a Caterpillar C32 engine and Lithium Titanate Oxide (LTO) traction battery packs, allowing it to operate over non-electrified lines.
The diesel engine has a nominal power of 900kW and meets EU 97/68 Stage V emission requirements. The two LTO battery packs provide 400kW extra power to supplement the engine when the locomotive is running in diesel/battery hybrid mode as well as last mile carbon free shunting operation.
Commenting on the contract, Karl Watts, chief executive officer of Rail Operations (UK), said: “The rail industry has acted very positively in understanding its role in reducing carbon emissions and improving inner city air quality. The Class 93 fleet, with its array of green credentials, will allow us to lead the way in supporting the rail industry deliver its decarbonisation targets. Furthermore, with its impressive state-of-the-art specification, the class 93s also allow us to develop new markets and modernise many aspects of UK train operations”.
Iñigo Parra, CEO of Stadler Valencia, added: “The innovative and cost-effective solution will provide environmentally friendly rail transport services, supporting national decarbonisation strategies and promoting modal shift to rail”.