French multinational rail vehicle maker Alstom announced on Wednesday that it has delivered 300 electric locomotives to Indian Railways, increasing the national transport company’s ability to haul its heavy freight trains at higher speeds.
As part of its €3.5 billion order, Alstom is to supply 800 powerful 12,000 hp (9 MW) two-section locomotives for freight services. Designated WAG-12B by Indian Railways, these locomotives are capable of hauling 6,000-ton rakes at a top speed of 120 kilometers per hour.
To mark the milestone delivery, the 300th electric locomotive was flagged out from Alstom’s Nagpur Locomotive Maintenance Depot, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last December.
“Indian Railways is undergoing a massive transformation in its freight operations and Alstom’s contribution to powering this revolution is commendable. The joint venture established between Indian Railways and Alstom to build India’s most powerful electric locomotives for freight transport is an outstanding example of a successful public-private partnership model. It will play a key role in accelerating the growth of the freight sector,” said Naresh Lalwani, General Manager, Central Railway.
Olivier Loison, Managing Director, Alstom India said that Alstom’s WAG12B electric locomotive has proven to be a performance multiplier as it can haul heavier loads at higher speeds.
“The delivery of the 300th locomotive is a proud milestone for us, and as we continue to deliver more locomotives, this partnership will further enhance the country’s logistical capabilities,” he said.
As part of the contract, Alstom’s Nagpur depot will service 250 WAG12B-E locomotives from series 60251 onwards. This depot is equipped with the latest technologies and features to anticipate failures, enabling proactive maintenance of India’s most advanced freight locomotives at a significantly lower cost.
The depot has 12 tracks for maintenance with high-tech equipment. The depot is equipped with a Centered Fleet Monitoring (CFM) system to remotely monitor the fleet via the Health Hub and Train Tracer system.
The Prompt Response Team (PRT) is deployed 24 hours a day for locomotive attention. It also has green features such as rainwater harvesting, zero discharge through waste water treatment plant and sewage treatment plant, 100% LED lights, daylight panels, occupancy sensors, greenery and provisions for a 1MW rooftop solar array.
This is the second such facility to be constructed by Alstom, following the depot in Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh which housed the first 250 locomotives delivered to Indian Railways.
The WAG-12B locomotives will be built as part of a joint venture between Alstom and Indian Railways at one of India’s largest integrated greenfield manufacturing facilities in Madhepura (Bihar).
This is the largest FDI project in the Indian railway sector. The facility has an installed production capacity of 120 locomotives per year and Alstom has progressively achieved nearly 90 percent indigenization.
With these powerful domestically manufactured electric locomotives, India has become the 6th country in the world to join the club of countries that produce high horsepower domestic locomotives.
The WAG-12B locomotives made their first run on the first fully operational sections of the dedicated freight corridors two years ago. Major commodities hauled by these electric locomotives included coal, cement, grain, fertilizer, petrochemicals, minerals, and mail/parcels in 17 states and two union territories.
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