AUSTRALIA: Pacific National has taken delivery of the first two of seven N-ViroMotive genset locomotives ordered from National Railway Equipment Co, and has begun testing five heavy haul locomotives supplied by CSR Qishuyan earlier this year.

The NRE locomotives with Cummins QSK19 engines were custom designed for use at the BlueScope steelworks at Port Kembla in New South Wales, and manufactured in the USA.

The investment ‘is part of a broader effort to adopt the best technology in order to improve efficiency and customer service across Pacific National’s operations’, explained Andrew Adam, General Manager, Intermodal. ‘These new locomotives will not only boost the efficiency of our BlueScope rail operations in Port Kembla, but also improve our safety and environment performance and help minimise noise impacts in the local community.’

The CSR Qishuyan SDA2 locomotives, designated Class 88, are to be used on 1 067 mm gauge heavy haul coal trains in Queensland. Assembly was undertaken at Changzhou in China. They incorporate ‘proven equipment from industry recognised and approved suppliers’, according to PN, including a MTU EU Stage IIIA compliant engine, ABB electrical equipment, Voith cooling systems, Knorr-Bremse ECP braking, Faiveley compressors, Selectron controls, CSR bogies and Wabtec event recorders and CCTV.

The locomotives arrived in Australia in March, and following customer clearance and interim registration are now ‘undergoing a rigorous test programme to assure their performance, reliability and safety’.