• Acela Disposition Discussion

  • Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.
Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

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  by eolesen
 
We've covered mismanagement of CAHSR over in the CAHSR thread, so there's really no point rehashing here...

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  by electricron
 
eolesen wrote: Tue Jun 08, 2021 8:54 am We've covered mismanagement of CAHSR over in the CAHSR thread, so there's really no point rehashing here..
I was not arguing whether CHSR management was good or not, I was arguing that CHSR leasing the retiring Acela trainsets would be a good idea for the interim period while the project is incomplete. I'm so sorry you did not get my drift.
  by eolesen
 
Yep, and I even said it looked better than buying new equipment. But that project is so overspent they're considering single tracking it rather than the original double track plan. If they're that desperate to control costs, they should forego electric as well...

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  by west point
 
My 2 cents. Ca HSR might not want to order train sets that would sit around a long time before going into service. ?. However it will need first to settle the track by running trains over each segment as the segment is finished enough to run trains over it . Would HSR want a big freight loco(s) to run over the tracks to expedite that needed 1st step ?

Acela-1s are probably heavier than whatever HSR finally buys but heavy enough to settle the tracks. That gives time for any needed surfacing to be done and then run multi times until all the imperfections are fixed. If HSR gets the Amtrak AX-1 test car that would help immensely but suspect the single AX-1 train set owned by Amtrak will have that car stay as well. Now if the Acela-2s supply a test car ? In the meantime the joining and dynamics of the pans and the CAT could be extensively tested. No delaying as is happening with the AX-2s. HSR might even run a few test revenue runs with the AX--1s over the short segments once stations a finished ?

Now if a segment is complete and Amtrak want to detour its trains in the central valley the above might not be. The 2 AEMs that Cal train has could pull the central valley trains. ?

Once HSR has a definite calendar time to serve either San Francisco or LAX or Sacramento then HSR can place their order for train sets with delivery scheduled to 6 9 months before that happens.
  by hi55us
 
There are so many routes in the Northeast that could use the Acela 1's instead of sending them to the scrapper.

Amtrak could still use them for Keystone and NE Regional Service, with them being particularly useful for the Keystones since they have power cars at both ends. This would help Amtrak shore over the Amfleets until their replacements arrive in 2-3 years.

Lots of regional transit agencies in the Northeast could use them to increase speeds and install high-density seating. MARC, NJ Transit and MBTA all operate dedicated lines in the Northeast Corridor that have lots of high-level platforms and would help them market their service as well. Imagine the MBTA running a 2 stop Providence line train that makes the trip in 40 minutes instead of the 1' 10" it is doing right now. It would be a huge selling point.
  by Ridgefielder
 
I think to say "so many" is a bit of an overstatement. You have to take a step back and consider how many routes in the US are actually electrified with AC overhead catenary as of today. Aside from the NEC itself, you have:

-MN (ex-NH) New Canaan Branch
-NJT (ex-EL, nee DL&W) Morris & Essex and Montclair-Boonton lines
-NJT (ex-PRR) Princeton branch
-NJT (ex-NY&LB) North Jersey Coast Line as far as Long Branch
-AMTK (ex-PRR) Keystone Corridor to Harrisburg
-SEPTA (ex-PRR, RDG) Regional Rail to various suburban Philadelphia destinations
-Denver RTD A & B lines

So far as I know that's everything non-NEC running off AC catenary in the US as of 06/10/21. The two Chicago operations are 1.5kV DC and the extensive LIRR and MNR (ex-NYC) operations are 700V DC third rail.

The only possible non-AMTK user I could even imagine would be NJT on the Coast Line and even there it would be some sort of premium summer-only service akin to the LIRR's Cannonball.
Last edited by nomis on Thu Jun 10, 2021 7:24 pm, edited 1 time in total. Reason: Removed unnecessary quote
  by amtrakowitz
 
David Benton wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 11:29 pm some boards reportedly no longer available , or Bombardier want $$$$ for them or the rights to use them . Main problem is bad blood between Amtrak and Bombardier, and the fact the Acela 1's are too heavy for HSR.
They aren't literally "too heavy" since they can operate at the speeds they were advertised to run at. And compared to other cars that run in the US, they're on the lighter side. Questions remain of course as to how efficiently kilowatt-hourwise they run per passenger and what their detrimental effects on infrastructure are and have been.

Just to compare, the last of the first-generation Alstom TGV Sud-Est trainsets were retired last year. Most of those were constructed before 1980.
  by BandA
 
QNX powered display boards could be ripped out & replaced as they are not safety systems, right? Did they build full-custom hardware for the controller circuits? If so, why? Intel compatible computers are readily available. You can use the latest version of Linux or the exact versions are available from archives.

Any time you change anything safety related, it requires testing. When you have 10 or 20 of something its usually cheaper just to get the identical part rather than testing a new part. That's what they are talking about.
  by MattW
 
amtrakowitz wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 5:51 pm
David Benton wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 11:29 pm some boards reportedly no longer available , or Bombardier want $$$$ for them or the rights to use them . Main problem is bad blood between Amtrak and Bombardier, and the fact the Acela 1's are too heavy for HSR.
They aren't literally "too heavy" since they can operate at the speeds they were advertised to run at. And compared to other cars that run in the US, they're on the lighter side. Questions remain of course as to how efficiently kilowatt-hourwise they run per passenger and what their detrimental effects on infrastructure are and have been.

Just to compare, the last of the first-generation Alstom TGV Sud-Est trainsets were retired last year. Most of those were constructed before 1980.
Their heaviness beats up the track though. No HSR system designed for lighter trains (CAHSR maybe for example) is going to want Acelas breaking the track.
  by BandA
 
Chinese made HSR is probably off the table for any US projects, so that is less competition for these "unicorns"
  by urr304
 
The TGV sets built before 1980 that were mentioned that were retired recently probably did not have the integration of control that the Acelas have. This problem of updating and compatibality of control systems is not unique to the Acelas.

For example, my place of work we have sanding lines that were built in 2005, about 2012 a machine from same manufacturer was inserted into each line. It was very difficult to get communications established, the PLC for the new machines had to be slowed in order for communication. Now, we are having problems with hardware deterioration and there are no replacement without ripping everything out and many dollars; the actual machinery, motors, power relays are fine just the controls.
  by mcgrath618
 
Ridgefielder wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:47 am I think to say "so many" is a bit of an overstatement. You have to take a step back and consider how many routes in the US are actually electrified with AC overhead catenary as of today. Aside from the NEC itself, you have:

-MN (ex-NH) New Canaan Branch
-NJT (ex-EL, nee DL&W) Morris & Essex and Montclair-Boonton lines
-NJT (ex-PRR) Princeton branch
-NJT (ex-NY&LB) North Jersey Coast Line as far as Long Branch
-AMTK (ex-PRR) Keystone Corridor to Harrisburg
-SEPTA (ex-PRR, RDG) Regional Rail to various suburban Philadelphia destinations
-Denver RTD A & B lines

So far as I know that's everything non-NEC running off AC catenary in the US as of 06/10/21. The two Chicago operations are 1.5kV DC and the extensive LIRR and MNR (ex-NYC) operations are 700V DC third rail.

The only possible non-AMTK user I could even imagine would be NJT on the Coast Line and even there it would be some sort of premium summer-only service akin to the LIRR's Cannonball.
I could see SEPTA using them on either a Wilmington/Newark express, a Trenton express, or even a Paoli/Thorndale express.
  by jonnhrr
 
In talking about using the Acelas elsewhere, one thing people forget is these are high level platform only trains. A lot of the suggested alternate routes have low level platforms so it becomes a non starter. Modifying the Acela sets to have steps would probably be prohibitive.
  by Matt Johnson
 
With the active tilt system, could they be used for a stationary high speed rail theme park ride with simulated motion? Sort of an Acela version of this!

  by rcthompson04
 
jonnhrr wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 10:26 am In talking about using the Acelas elsewhere, one thing people forget is these are high level platform only trains. A lot of the suggested alternate routes have low level platforms so it becomes a non starter. Modifying the Acela sets to have steps would probably be prohibitive.
This would preclude their use in SEPTA service. For example on the Paoli-Thorndale Line, you couldn’t use them on the most logical run, the Great Valley Flyer, as it could serve half the stops. This is true on the two NEC lines as well.
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