Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.

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Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby johnpbarlow » Sat Dec 16, 2017 8:28 am

Springfield Terminal/B&M's FRA-approved "plan" for PTC implementation between Worcester and Mattawamkeag (ie doesn't include PAS track) is documented at the FRA website:

https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=FRA-2010-0068-0009

The word plan is in quotation fingers because ST/B&M successfully applied for a "Main Line Track Exclusion - Limited Operations Exemption":

A Limited Operations Exception is being requested by ST/B&M under FRA Rule §236.1019(c) (2) (ii) for:
 Railroads that are not a Class I railroad and on which less than 15 million gross tons “MGT” of freight traffic are transported annually and
 That any segment is signaled and no more than 12 regularly scheduled passenger trains are operated during a calendar day.


I can't seem to find a Pan Am Southern PTC implementation plan on the FRA site...
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby johnpbarlow » Wed Feb 28, 2018 6:51 am

Not meaning to beat a dead horse here, but in looking at the FRA approved version 11 (May 2017) of MBTA's PTC Implementation plan (PTCIP), here are a couple of data points relevant to PAS/PAR freight ops:

- MBTA PTCIP Table 6-1 Freight Data shows that PAS hauls 6M - 7M gross ton miles of freight between Westminster and Willows
- MBTA will be installing ACSES II wayside transponder based PTC on all of its lines (apparently all MBTA locomotives (except GP40 #3247) and cab cars already have ACSES II hardware with 900MHz radio systems installed - PTC will require upgrade to use of 220MHz radio) and has removed any previous reference to the installation of I-ETMS GPS-based PTC technology (which will be used by freight RRs such as NS, CSX, UP, etc) between Westminster and Willows, meaning trains 22K/23K, 28N/287, EDPO/POED, SEPO/POSE, and locals will require locomotive leaders outfitted with ACSES II. According to MBTA's Q4 2017 PTC progress report, "On August 21, 2017, the MBTA sent notice to tenants to be equipped with ACSES II system by December 31, 2018 to continue to operate on MBTA controlled rail lines". Amtrak power will be outfitted with ACSES II so no issues there with MBTA's PTCIP. Also look for transponder installation along the Fitchburg line (220 transponders are required) this summer in addition to pole lines.
- The MBTA PTCIP says 25 Pan Am locomotives (EMD GP/SD units only so far!) will have ACSES II equipment installed as of Q3 2018. There is no mention of outfitting B40/C40 engines with ATC but the PTCIP does say "the needs of Pan Am RR have not been fully defined".
- The top of PTCIP page 8-5 has this provocative content:
Once MBTA’s PTC System is fully implemented, no non-ACSES equipped locomotives will be permitted into either its ATC with ACSES II South Side territory or on ACSES II in ABS Mode North Side territory. In its effort to ensure interoperability, MBTA will “cap” any non-ACSES equipped train entering MBTA territories with a MBTA ACSES equipped locomotive. Please refer to the PTC Implementation Plans for Amtrak, CSX and NS for their rolling stock fleet PTC characteristics. MBTA is working with the other tenant railroads to obtain their fleet characteristics and PTC interoperability agreements.


This suggests that MBTA provided power will lead 22K/23K, et al, between Westminster and Willows!?! Unless of course NS installs ACSES II on a portion of its fleet which, according to its own most current PTCIP, NS says it will not. Furthermore, NS trains operating over Amtrak NEC, where ACSES II is installed, between Perryville and Baltimore will use its own fleet of I-ETMS equipped locomotives with NS contracting with Amtrak for I-ETMS installation between Philadelphia and DC.

So taking the latest versions of the MBTA, NS, and Amtrak PTCIPs literally, MBTA provided power (leased ex-Cl 1 RR power like ex-CSX C40s?) will be leading PAS freights between Westminster and Willows. Should be an interesting operation!

MBTA v11 PTCIP: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=FRA-2010-0030-0027
Attachments
MBTA PTC Freight MGT table.JPG
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby newpylong » Wed Feb 28, 2018 8:51 am

I am not sure what "MBTA provided power (leased ex-Cl 1 RR power like ex-CSX C40s" is but the likely outcome if the NS units cannot lead is a Pan Am engine equipped with ACSES leading in and out of PTC territory and being removed/added at Deerfield or Mechanicville for the interim until a better solution is found. However I am fairly confident that would not be an acceptable long term solution for PAS and they would look for no power changes enroute.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby johnpbarlow » Wed Feb 28, 2018 12:48 pm

Agree that this "capping" approach to PAS / PAR trains with MBTA provided power doesn't sound like an acceptable long term arrangement. I was thinking that the 25 GP40s/SD40s that MBTA is agreeing to outfit with ACSES II PTC gear might be totally consumed by SEPO/POSE and EDPO/POED trains in D2 and for local Boston/Ayer service. But it looks like MBTA has been granted a full system wide implementation schedule extension to the end of 2020. Only PTC hardware, but not software, will be installed by end of 2018 so MBTA, NS, and Pan Am have some time to come up with plan B.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby Backshophoss » Wed Feb 28, 2018 9:38 pm

Worse case,NS "raids" Conrail Share assets power pool for ACSES II Leaders on MBTA. :wink:
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby Engineer Spike » Sun Mar 18, 2018 8:52 pm

The one part which nobody is talking about is PTC over the D&H between Mohawk yard and Mechanicville. I wonder if it will be enforced, or if Pan Am/D&H will have a waiver. Perhaps NS will loan some power for this operation, since that is what is used primarily, except for the locals, and RJ bound trains.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby newpylong » Mon Mar 19, 2018 8:37 am

Wouldn't it only be installed from MX and up the Canadian Main due to Amtrak? No shiny window trains east of there. Still - the same question applies traversing that trackage in and out of MX. What is the tonnage treshhold limit now for PTC I think 5 Million tons? There have been so many iterations I failed to keep track. Also does CP interchange any TIH with NS in MX? I don't ever remember seeing any come off 413 or 412 for me when I worked MOED.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby johnpbarlow » Tue Mar 20, 2018 5:09 am

Attached is the table from CP's PTC Implementation plan v3.0 (posted with FRA March 2017) indicating which eastern US main lines of CP are to have PTC installed. And here is some additional text from CP's plan relevant to ex-D&H territory:

All of the US East Region is considered main line, as defined in 49 CFR § 236.1003. These portions of track are considered main line by virtue of having over 5 MGTs of railroad traffic
transported over this track in the year 2015. In addition to meeting the minimum MGT threshold, the Canadian subdivision and Freight subdivision up to the junction with the Canadian
also meet the definition of main line since they are used for regularly scheduled passenger service and accommodated TIH/PIH in 2015 and therefore will be equipped with PTC. With the
exception of the Colonie, all of the mainline subdivisions on the US East Region will be PTC equipped.

The Colonie subdivision meets the requirements of 49 CFR § 236.1005(b)(4)(ii) and therefore will not be PTC equipped. As required by 49 CFR § 236.1005(b)(4)(ii), five year GTM traffic
projections for the Colonie subdivision can be found in Table 1-7 below. Passenger trains are not forecasted to operate and no PIH is forecasted to be transported on the Colonie subdivision in the
years 2016 through 2020.


Here is the URL to CP's PTC Implementation plan 3.0: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=FRA-2010-0058-0028

In its Q4 2017 PTC Progress report posted 2/12/18 with the FRA, CP indicates that as a tenant RR, Pan Am Southern is expected to outfit approximately 78 locomotives with I-ETMS PTC (I read this assertion as being separate from NS requirements as NS has filed a PTC Implementation plan and PAS has not). But, AFAIK, Pan Am is getting only 25 GP/SD locomotives outfitted with ACSES II PTC gear at the MBTA's expense.

Here is the URL to the Q4 2017 PTC Progress report: https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=FRA-2010-0058-0029
Attachments
CP PTC eastern US plan.JPG
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby newpylong » Tue Mar 20, 2018 5:45 am

Looks like they're planning to do Schenectady station right up to XO then.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby BostonUrbEx » Tue Mar 20, 2018 11:37 am

How many different forms of PTC will Pan Am have to contend with when everything is installed? I-ETMS on CP, ACES on the Springfield Line, and whatever we're calling the MBTA's PTC? Seems like quite a cluster. I have to wonder if that causes significant complications for on-board equipment.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby Trinnau » Tue Mar 20, 2018 4:44 pm

Just two, I-ETMS and ACSES II. MBTA is installing the same thing Amtrak has.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby johnpbarlow » Tue Mar 20, 2018 4:48 pm

Pan Am runs in I-ETMS (GPS-based) PTC territory on CP track and ACSES-II (wayside transponder-based PTC) in the MBTA northside trackage. MBTA is to implement ACSES-II on 25 PAR EMD engines but I’m not aware of any plan that puts I-ETMS in any Pan Am engines though. But I may well be wrong.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby johnpbarlow » Sat Aug 25, 2018 7:28 am

Bumping thread: On 8/24/18, FRA announces PTC grants ~$3M to Springfield Terminal (?) / Pan Am to install PTC on locomotives.

https://www.railwayage.com/cs/ptc/from-fra-a-200mm-ptc-infusion/

Excerpt:
Springfield Terminal Railway Company (ST)/Pan Am Railways, up to $2.99 million: Install ACSES II and Automatic Train Control on ST’s locomotives on rail lines throughout the New England area and support related testing and training.


Given MBTA is only implementing ACSES II wayside-based PTC and given Pan Am Southern's partner NS (and most Cl 1 freight RRs) are implementing only GPS-based I-ETMS PTC, I'm still confused how the 22K/23K/28N/287 trains will be able to operate east of CPF-335 Westminster through MBTA territory to CPF-WL at Ayer using NS leaders.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby BostonUrbEx » Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:36 pm

johnpbarlow wrote:Pan Am runs in I-ETMS (GPS-based) PTC territory on CP track and ACSES-II (wayside transponder-based PTC) in the MBTA northside trackage. MBTA is to implement ACSES-II on 25 PAR EMD engines but I’m not aware of any plan that puts I-ETMS in any Pan Am engines though. But I may well be wrong.


Will the Colonie Sub have I-ETMS? Or only the Canadian Mainline? If only the Mainline does, they could get away with using NS leaders for all Mohawk trains, and continue to use their own power for Rotterdam trains.

Does NS have an ACSES fleet for trains to/from Ayer? Would be worth it to NS to have an ACSES pool, as opposed to putting a Pan Am clunker on somewhere en route.
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Re: Pan Am v. PTC implementation

Postby johnpbarlow » Mon Aug 27, 2018 4:01 am

Per CP's PTC Implementation plan rev 3.0, the Canadian Main, Canadian Connector, and Freight Main (ex-GRS between mp467.5 (PAS connection at Mechanicville) and mp484.7 (NS D&H South line connection at the Schenectady Amtrak station) will all be outfitted with I-ETMS PTC. The Colonie subdivision between Mechanicville and Albany will not have PTC implemented as it doesn't meet annual tonnage threshold nor, is not expected to have passenger service, and will not see PIH (poison-by-inhalation hazards) commodities. Status of PTC implementation of these three CP segments is "Operational/Complete" per CP's Q2 2018 PTC Progress Report. In section 6, "Quarterly Update on Interoperability Progress and Other Formal Agreements", CP is expecting "Pan Am Southern" to implement I-ETMS PTC on 78 locomotives. CP does not list NS or Pan Am Railways as a tenant operator on these CP segments. I don't know if these 78 locomotives are PAR or NS-owned.

Per NS PTC implementation plan, 2,900 NS locomotives will have I-ETMS-based PTC implemented - NS has no intent on implementing ACSES-based PTC on any of its locomotives. In fact, on Amtrak's Northeast Corridor and Harrisburg line, where ACSES is implemented, Amtrak says in its Q2 2108 PTC Progress Report "NS has contracted Amtrak to install I-ETMS on a portion of the NEC (Philadelphia to Washington and a portion of the Harrisburg Line) for operation of its freight trains. Amtrak installed the NS WIUs along the aforementioned portions of the NEC and is currently testing it. The NS WIUs will be owned and maintained by Amtrak and will be integrated into the Nationwide BOS."

Net: NS-supplied power outfitted with I-ETMS deployed on 22K/23K/28N/287 trains that run on PAS should have no issue operating between Chicago/MIdwest all the way to CPF-335 at Westminster. Not sure what should happen in MBTA territory between Westminster and CPF-AY/CPF-WL. (BTW, NS' Southern Tier east of SIlver Springs NY to Binghamton and D&H South from Binghamton to CP-485 Schenectady will not have PTC deployed as the annual tonnage/PIH/passenger trains requirements thresholds are not met).
Attachments
CP Eastern US PTC.PNG
Last edited by MEC407 on Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: unnecessary quoting
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