French rolling-stock firm Alstom- manufactured high-speed freight trains capable of running at a maximum speed of 120 kmph have been approved by the railway ministry and the Research Designs & Standards Organisation (RDSO), the firm announced.
“This makes the Alstom e-locos the fastest freight movers in the country. Cumulatively, these electric locomotives have already clocked over 1 million kilometres, thus providing a significant fillip to the country’s freight logistics landscape,” Alstom said in a statement on Wednesday.
Electric locos allow heavy freight trains to haul 6,000 tonnes at a top speed of 120 kmph. The trains are planned to be deployed for operations on major freight routes including the dedicated freight corridors. They are expected to increase the average speed of freight trains in India by at least 20-25 kmph, the company said.
Alain Spohr, managing director of Alstom India and South Asia said, “In line with India’s push towards self-reliance, we have successfully leveraged our local engineering and manufacturing capabilities. Alstom is also committed to support IR [Indian Railways] in reducing its carbon footprint and adopt cleaner technologies in its quest to transform into the world’s largest Green Railway network.”
“Equipped with Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors (IGBT) based propulsion technology, it would lead to considerable savings in energy consumption due to the use of regenerative braking. The technology is also helpful towards making the acceleration process more efficient by reducing the heat generation and traction noise. Additionally, this move will not only bring down operational costs but also reduce the congestion faced by Indian Railways,” he added.
The French rolling-stock maker has four industrial sites in Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. The largest engineering centre of Alstom outside of France is also in India (Bengaluru).
In August, Alstom expressed interest in running private train operations in India. On July 1, the railways ministry began the process for allowing private trains on 109 routes.