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March 30, 2022

Wabtec develops sustainable locomotive for freight rail in Brazil

The new engine technology is expected to reduce fuel consumption and emissions by more than 5%.

US-based rail technology company Wabtec has introduced a sustainable, heavy-haul locomotive for Brazil’s freight rail market.

The ES44ACi diesel-electric locomotive will be first delivered to Suzano, MRS and Rumo.

Wabtec has already received contracts to provide 25 locomotives for these companies.

The new engine technology is expected to reduce fuel consumption and emissions by more than 5% compared with its predecessor.

Wabtec products vice-president Daniela Ornelas said: “The ES44ACi locomotive features the Evolution Series diesel engine, producing the same 4,500 horsepower with just 12 cylinders compared to its predecessor the 16-cylinder FDL engine.”

Rumo will take the delivery of the ES44ACi diesel-electric locomotive over the coming weeks.

The company is said to be the largest railway operator in Brazil.

The diesel-electric locomotive is expected to help logistics operator MRS to advance its system.

MRS operates a 1,643km rail network in Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo states.

MRS maintenance engineering general manager Anelise Salzani said: “We are acquiring the ES44ACi because we expect it to be a locomotive with high power and lower diesel consumption.

“It incorporates two pillars of the company: the search for more productivity and the reduction in the volume of emissions, the consolidation of a more sustainable operation.”

Wabtec provides equipment, locomotives, systems, digital solutions and services for heavy haul and passenger rail transport. The company has operations in more than 50 countries.

Last week, US-based company Norfolk Southern awarded a multi-year contract to Wabtec to modernise 330 locomotives to further improve its fleet’s fuel efficiency and reduce its carbon emissions.

Under the deal, the D9-44CW locomotives will be modernised to convert into AC44C6Ms, adding another 20 years of life to each locomotive.

The upgraded FDL Advantage engine will be included in these locomotives, which will also be equipped with several digital solutions.

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