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GO Transit Electrification (Metrolinx, Proposed)

ssiguy2

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My point was that streetcars have to contend with car accidents along the route. RER will be more reliable not necessarily due to the wires themselves but the {near} lack of at grade crossings. RER will not be totally grade separated but much of it will be and has to contend with a couple dozen grade crossings as opposed to hundreds of them along streetcar routes.

As far as batteries not being able to recharge either in a power outage that will almost never be the case. As I stated, a huge regionwide power outage is almost unheard of but more specific areas of power outages is quite common. Due to the trains being able to travel up to 95km on a single charge, the power outage at Weston, Union, or Ajax wouldn't matter as they can simply continue travelling and recharge at the nearest station that has power. such as at terminus stations. Each route will obviously have recharging infrastructure at terminus stations and of course Union will have them but it would also be prudent to have one intermediate recharging station along each route for such an emergency like Oakville along the LW line.
 

smallspy

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My point was that streetcars have to contend with car accidents along the route. RER will be more reliable not necessarily due to the wires themselves but the {near} lack of at grade crossings. RER will not be totally grade separated but much of it will be and has to contend with a couple dozen grade crossings as opposed to hundreds of them along streetcar routes.
And what about signal systems failing? Switches getting filled with ice and not able to lock?

The magic of RER doesn't make these problems go away. And both of these are problems that streetcars are far less susceptible to.

As far as batteries not being able to recharge either in a power outage that will almost never be the case. As I stated, a huge regionwide power outage is almost unheard of but more specific areas of power outages is quite common. Due to the trains being able to travel up to 95km on a single charge, the power outage at Weston, Union, or Ajax wouldn't matter as they can simply continue travelling and recharge at the nearest station that has power. such as at terminus stations. Each route will obviously have recharging infrastructure at terminus stations and of course Union will have them but it would also be prudent to have one intermediate recharging station along each route for such an emergency like Oakville along the LW line.
You are assuming that the trains will be able to move 95km on their batteries. Considering that we don't even know who is going to be making them yet, that is a huge assumption to make.

Dan
 

ssiguy2

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Even if they buy used battery trains from the Congo that go less than half that distance, that will still be enough to keep the system working just fine in a power outage. As I stated earlier, Union and terminus stations will obviously have catenary recharging but it would also be prudent to have one intermediate recharging station on each line.
 

smallspy

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Even if they buy used battery trains from the Congo that go less than half that distance, that will still be enough to keep the system working just fine in a power outage. As I stated earlier, Union and terminus stations will obviously have catenary recharging but it would also be prudent to have one intermediate recharging station on each line.
Your abilities to stretch reality really know no bounds, eh?

Intermediate charging? Really?

Why not just stay with diesel then? Not only are you going to lose all of the time advantages that you'd gain by electrifying, you'd eliminate all of the save savings by running multiple units over loco-hauled. Hell, you can run for infinitely longer on a tank of diesel than you can with any battery projected to be on the market in the next 20 years.

Dan
 

ssiguy2

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Alstom has announced that it will be supplying 11 new train sets {4 EMU cars each} to replace the current Siemens diesel electric trains by 2023. The 85 km Chenitz to Leipzig will have it's travel time reduced by 6 minutes and has a top speed of 160 km/hr. The trains are not new but rather standard Alstom Coradia EMU catenary trains but will use battery on the 70 km section of the non-catenary route.

This is the first battery trains by Alstom but are not a new design but rather just their standard EMU regional trains. There goes the argument that battery is some form of novel technology. Ditto for the new British battery trains. As I have said before, the ONLY difference between catenary EMUs and battery ones is one has bigger batteries.
 
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mdrejhon

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I think this is fantastic news for Metrolinx.

Pretty cool. It's very predictable to see battery-backup EMU catenary trains.

160kph under the catenary, I wonder how fast they will go on the battery.

Although we (ssiguy and me) have historically disagreed on lots, I am excited about the progress on this. I love the concept of battery-backed EMU catenary trains. They are a natural fit for the Metrolinx 2041 RTP 15-min RER to Hamilton -- hopping the freight gap between Aldershot and Hamilton. Freight may electrify but may not be well beyond 2041. The devil is in the details (full battery trains versus catenary+battery trains) but it would be a great solution for Metrolinx to hop freight networks, whether Kitchener-Union, or Union-Hamilton.

There is no doubt in my mind that between now and 2041 -- that there will already be mature battery+catenary high-capacity (BiLevel/etc) options that can electrify to Hamilton without cats above. The electrification limit at Burlington, and the inability to electrify on freight lines (for now), can easily be hopped by a future battery+catenary train.

Impressive that this battery train is going to be used in similiar climates (Leipzig is not that different from Toronto temperatures), given cold weather will affect battery. They can use battery-warmers under catenary, to keep battery warm for the 73km section in winter. And they can put up a small catenary at West Harbour to do a top-off charge / battery-warmer for the return trip.

GTHA's short freight-owned sections of the mostly Metrolinx-owned network appear currently hoppable by this Alstom train. A train set about to become available capable of electrifying to Hamilton! ... Single deck though. But that's not much of a techological hop to being added to a BiLevel EMU -- could easily be done within ten years.

Could Metrolinx do a pilot order?
In theory, Metrolinx could trailblaze a pilot order. Could be ~90% non-battery trainsets, but order ~10% of their trainsets with an optional battery add-on. For network flexibility. Expecting to only electrify to Burlington but then surprising Hamilton with electric service by 2031 if a pilot project goes well. Basically, status quo safety (ability to proceed with existing Regional Transportation Plan) but bringing an electrification option to our freight network sections. With this, 100% of GO network could be electrified, with only the Metrolinx-owned network having catenary. If the battery option trainset is delayed, not a big loss -- at least the Master Plan is on schedule. But if it goes well, then we introduce faster & more cheaply than master plan timeline.

The pilot order would be a "provision of an option for faster service introduction" -- like 15-min RER to Hamilton in 2031 instead of 2041 -- if the pilot goes well.

EDIT: Related Thread
160kph Battery Trains in GTHA
 
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ssiguy2

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Well I knew winning you over to battery was inevitable. Mdrejhon, why don't you finally admit what everyone else already knows..……..you have the hots for me. Admittedly with my rugged good looks and charming personality, one can hardly blame you..

As far as the train speeds, 160km/hr is indeed the BATTERY train top speed. Of course that is in an ideal world with no hills, bends, headwinds, station spacing etc. The trains are expected to realistically have a performance level of 140km/hr with similar de/acceleration levels as standard catenary EMUs.

As far as freight going catenary or battery, don't count on it. It would be far too expensive to electrify huge freight lines for catenary and battery would not have remotely enough power. This is the same for other large mass transportation and manufacturing needs. This is where hydrogen comes and makes the most sense. New hydrogen {Germany ,France, Britain} trains and ferries {Norway}, freight {Poland, Russia}, large transports, {Taiwan, Japan, USA}, port infrastructure {USA, NZ} are already being deployed and cargo ships, airplanes, and agricultural equipment are quickly being developed. Battery power is simply not viable in any of those applications..
 

north-of-anything

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Does anyone have a link to where the questions for Metrolinx's September town hall were answered? I asked about double tracking the Barrie line, I'm not sure if it got answered, and I don't know where I could check.
 

mdrejhon

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Well I knew winning you over to battery was inevitable. Mdrejhon, why don't you finally admit what everyone else already knows..……..you have the hots for me. Admittedly with my rugged good looks and charming personality, one can hardly blame you..
LOL, thanks....

Though where we (at least historically in past) differ is that I don't believe in scaling back the catenary plan for Metrolinx' use case. I feel catenary is still a mandatory portion of at least some % of GO's network. How much % is certainly up to debate. But the important thing is that the catenary is useful regardless of whether there are battery trains or not.

Plain old 100+ year old technology (catenary) -- conveniently doubling as bona-fide "battery charging on the go" infrastructure!
Much more reusable infrastructure than hydrail-specific infrastructure.

And 160kph train under battery power? Even better.
 
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ssiguy2

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I can certainly see, even with battery trains, the needs for small catenary stretches. The most obvious one would be a downtown one basically from the DVP to roughly Bathurst most of which will inevitably be covered over any way. The Rail Deck Park will initially take care of the western portion but eventually the park will be extended east to the DVP as well.

I think the last portions of the lines should also be catenary to ensure that any unforeseen events makes sure that the trains can finish their routes ie Malton to Bramelea, Burlington to Aldershot. These would be prudent measures as well as having a few stops with over overhead catenary contactless recharging at busier stations. All these things would add to the flexibility of the system, make expansion much easier {if a diesel broke down on LSW, the EMU could continue to Hamilton with no concern with power range} and provide more backup if one of the individual cars systems went down, the other cars would have enough power to at least finish the route.

Outside of this, I don't see any advantages of standard catenary EMU over battery. Battery would have more flexibility, reliability, be much faster implement, is not suscpitble to weather damage, offers very little construction interuptions, and would save billions on catenary infrastructure costs.
 

crs1026

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Outside of this, I don't see any advantages of standard catenary EMU over battery. Battery would have more flexibility, reliability, be much faster implement, is not suscpitble to weather damage, offers very little construction interuptions, and would save billions on catenary infrastructure costs.
An electrical distribution system that consisted of multiple discontinuous sections of catenary would be much more complex, and harder to operate, than a continuous one. More feed points, more complex load balancing, and would likely require continuous feeders strung the length of the route anyways, to preserve redundancy in supply points and to balance load.

The amount of money saved would not be ‘billions’.

- Paul
 

ssiguy2

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Some sad, and yet completely expected, news from Hydrogenics. It is Miss based and one of the world leaders in hydrogen transportation technology. In true Canadian fashion, the company has been sold to US Cummins Inc and has been delisted from the TSX.
 

ssiguy2

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Hydrogen definitely has excellent applications but it still suffers from a lack of production and distribution infrastructure. For shorter suburban/RER type systems I think battery is the way to go but hydrogen is still very much a viable option.

As far as larger applications like long-distance train travel, freight, transport trucks, agricultural machinery, air travel, ferries, docking equipment, cruise passenger ships etc hydrogen is the ONLY option. There is no second place. Contrary to what some here might think, we are moving into a hydrogen world whether they like it or not. There is no other energy source that is even being developed little alone realistically being applied than hydrogen. Battery powered urban transportation development will greatly help reduce emissions but only hydrogen offers the universal applications that are necessary if we are to make the urgent transformation to a zero-emissions world.

Hydrogen skeptics better start realizing that fact because it is exactly that.....a fact. Sorry to be so blunt but anyone who doesn't accept that reality is either woefully uninformed or nothing short of dilusional.
 
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