India’s first semi-high speed train Tejas Express will soon get new aerodynamic WAP5 locomotive which can achieve top speed quickly than the normal WAP5 locomotive. The new aerodynamic locomotive manufactured by Chittaranjan Locomotive Works (CLW) will be used in push-pull mode for passenger trains in Indian Railways.
Comparing to the normal WAP5 locomotive, the new aerodynamic WAP5 will have limited air-drag, improved aerodynamic-efficiency, more stability while cruising at 160-200 km/h and energy efficient. The LHB coaches used in Texas Express can easily achieve 200 km/h but it is resisted to 130 km/h due to major reasons like quality of tracks and safety. Indian Railways also have locomotives which can also easily achieve 160 Km/h. it will take a long time to make the track fit to travel at 160 km/h. Due to this reason, Indian Railways planned to modify the WAP5 Locomotive and use push-pull technology for passenger trains to improve its acceleration and reduce travel time.
Push and Pull Technology
Express train will be hauled by the ‘push and pull’ technology where two engines will be attached. One engine will be attached in the front, pulling the train, while the other at the rear. This will provide the extra power needed to accelerate and decelerate. It will increase the speed and reduce travel time. Apart from improving engine acceleration, it also renders a better turnaround time. Trains usually stop due to speed restrictions and stoppages along the entire railway network. A lot of time is significantly lost in both slowing down and picking up speed before and after stoppages. With two engines, the time lapse will be avoided and the journey will considerably save time. Push and pull technology is now been used on Delhi-Mumbai Rajdhani Express this technique is usually deployed for freight trains.
Why WAP5 Locomotive ?
WAP5 locomotive can haul all 15-18 coaches of trains at blazing permissible speed of 180 km/h. Most of popular fast trains in India like Gatimaan Express, Rajdhani Express, Shatabdi Express, Humsafar Express, Duranto Express, Tejas Express and super-fast express type trains are hauled by the WAP-5 locomotives. The WAP5 locomotives can produce a maximum of 6,000 hp, but produces 5,450 hp continuously. The WAP5 locomotive operates at a speed of 160km/h. The locomotive achieved 200 km/h during test runs and is capable of achieving top speed of 225 km/h. The braking system of this locomotive includes 160 kN (36,000 lbf) regenerative brakes, loco disc brakes, automatic train air brakes and a charged spring parking brake. WAP5 engine comes with safety features like vigilance control, slip/slide control, no volt relay, over voltage protection, main overload relay and earth fault relay.