daily menu » rate the banner | guess the city | one on oneforums map | privacy policy | DMCA | news magazine | posting guidelines

Go Back   SkyscraperCity > Infrastructure and Mobility Forums > Railways

Railways (Inter)national commuter and freight trains



Global Announcement

As a general reminder, please respect others and respect copyrights. Go here to familiarize yourself with our posting policy.


Reply

 
Thread Tools
Old September 22nd, 2010, 12:29 AM   #461
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

A short video of the existing railway: http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/multimed...tml?cid=999300
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote

Sponsored Links
Old September 22nd, 2010, 01:53 AM   #462
czm3
Automobile lover
 
czm3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: NYC/Miami
Posts: 381
Likes (Received): 147

I know that the Swiss are sticking to their schedule due to funding issues, but why does it really take so long? I understand that their schedules are extremely conservative so they wont disappoint their constituents but seriously? With the tunnel bored out, what will they still have to do? Add a liner, lay tracks, and install signalling/safety systems. I would think they could get that done in 18 months not 5 or 6 years....
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
czm3 no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old September 22nd, 2010, 09:33 AM   #463
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

There is very limited space on intermediate access points (that's also why Faido and Sedrun section excavated only a small part of the tunnel), so tracks have to be supplied from the two portals. And as these are carried by train on a (two) narrow single track tunnel(s) the train has first to go from the outside base into the tunnel, discharge the tracks, fix it with beton (like in other modern long tunnels there is no ballast), go back and start again. And from the base until the end of the half tunnel each train has to equip there are up to 30 km/20 miles, so the trip will probably require up to 45 minutes (at least going inside the tunnel, there will be no signaling system telling where the track ends, so trains will have to travel by sight).

The Lötschberg Base Tunnel (35 km/20 miles) has been completed in a little more than two years, so four years for the Gotthard twice as long are comprehensible (then there are 2 or 3 years as buffer fo mask eventual delays).
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old September 22nd, 2010, 11:09 PM   #464
czm3
Automobile lover
 
czm3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: NYC/Miami
Posts: 381
Likes (Received): 147

Thank you for answering my question. This is undoubtibly one of the coolest construction projects in the world! I wish the US could develop the discipline and long term vision to develop stuff like this....
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
czm3 no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old September 28th, 2010, 02:11 PM   #465
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

In the US railways are privately owned, mostly not electrified and nearly without passenger traffic (except around big cities). Freight trains runs with more locomotives also thanks to the couplings so 2%-3% grades are common, instead in Europe the states can support big infrastructure projects also if they can't be directly economically profitable.

I hope your planned high-speed lines becoem reaility somewhere int he future...
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old September 28th, 2010, 06:05 PM   #466
chornedsnorkack
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,980
Likes (Received): 388

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post
Freight trains runs with more locomotives also thanks to the couplings so 2%-3% grades are common
The first major railway crossing of the Alps is Brenner Pass, on summit level (1370 m or so). The other railway crossings were the first long rail tunnels, in late 19th century - Sankt Gotthard Tunnel, Mont Cenis Tunnel, Simplon Tunnel.

What are the ruling grades of the existing Brenner Pass track and the approaches to Gotthard and Simplon passes? And what shall be the ruling grade for the Gotthard Base Tunnel and Ceneri route?
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
chornedsnorkack no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old September 28th, 2010, 07:50 PM   #467
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

Alll existing main transalpine railways have gradients between 25‰ and 28‰ except the Fréjus that reach 33‰. The Simplon-Lötschberg line with the new Lötschberg tunnel has now steep ramps only on the southern side, so a southbound trains has to climb not more than 15‰ grades, but has to afford a 27‰ descent. That's why the new tunnel, being single track, is used mainly in the southbound direction where trains are usually heavier.

The new Gotthard railway will have a maxumum grade of 12‰ (8‰ in tunnels), but as only the Gotthard, Cenery and half of the Zimmerberg base tunnels have been built the 12‰ grade is not surpassed only on the main trunk (*) Basel-Bellinzona and on the Bellinzona-Luino-Laveno-Novara/Milano single track branch. The other branch (carrying two thirds of freight traffic) Bellinzona-Lugano-Milano has short (3 or 4 km) section at 17‰. There is a long term to lengthen the Ceneri base tunnel to increase capacity for passenger traffic and to reduce gradients to 12‰. The new Ceneri tunnel would then be around 40 km long.

(*) the Bozberg access line, one of two with the Hauenstein, reaches 1.4%
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old September 28th, 2010, 07:51 PM   #468
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

Alll existing main transalpine railways have gradients between 25‰ and 28‰ except the Fréjus that reach 33‰. The Simplon-Lötschberg line with the new Lötschberg tunnel has now steep ramps only on the southern side, so a southbound trains has to climb not more than 15‰ grades, but has to afford a 27‰ descent. That's why the new tunnel, being single track, is used mainly in the southbound direction where trains are usually heavier.

The new Gotthard railway will have a maxumum grade of 12‰ (8‰ in tunnels), but as only the Gotthard, Cenery and half of the Zimmerberg base tunnels have been built the 12‰ grade is not surpassed only on the main trunk (*) Basel-Bellinzona and on the Bellinzona-Luino-Laveno-Novara/Milano single track branch. The other branch (carrying two thirds of freight traffic) Bellinzona-Lugano-Milano has short (3 or 4 km) section at 17‰. There is a long term to lengthen the Ceneri base tunnel to increase capacity for passenger traffic and to reduce gradients to 12‰. The new Ceneri tunnel would then be around 40 km long.

(*) the Bozberg access line, one of two with the Hauenstein, reaches 14‰
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old September 28th, 2010, 08:16 PM   #469
thun
Registered User
 
thun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 3,829

Quote:
Originally Posted by chornedsnorkack View Post
The first major railway crossing of the Alps is Brenner Pass, on summit level (1370 m or so).
Wrong, the first mountain mainline buildt is the Semmering crossing of the k.u.k. Südbahn (Vienna - Trieste), opened in 1854. Its less known because it lies within Austria and isn't one of the mayor passes (for both railway and cars).
__________________
Folglich mein TagesTipp => Es genau so hinzunehmen wie ich es sagte. Notorisches Widersprechen wird nichts bringen. Ehrlich! Vertraut mir da voellig!
__________ __________ __________

Highcliff liked this post
thun no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 05:21 PM   #470
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

Only ten metres left: a cavern is under construction on the northern (Sedrun) side to allow the disassembly of the TBM. Next week the TBM will bore another eight metres, but for the last two we will have to wait the 15 and the two days of celebrations.

http://info.rsi.ch/home/channels/inf...eci-metriCi-si
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 06:01 PM   #471
gramercy
BANNED
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 4,823
Likes (Received): 799

who would have thought...

i remember reading about it in the 90s when it was only an idea
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
gramercy no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 06:10 PM   #472
chornedsnorkack
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,980
Likes (Received): 388

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post
Only ten metres left:
How much is left of the other tube?
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
chornedsnorkack no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 07:07 PM   #473
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

2.2 km because the TBM was stopped for 6 months because of a geological problem. This TBM will arrive around february 2011.
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 07:28 PM   #474
chornedsnorkack
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,980
Likes (Received): 388

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post
In the US railways are privately owned, mostly not electrified and nearly without passenger traffic (except around big cities). Freight trains runs with more locomotives also thanks to the couplings so 2%-3% grades are common, instead in Europe the states can support big infrastructure projects also if they can't be directly economically profitable.
The longest tunnel in Americas is Mount Macdonald Tunnel at 14,7 km, under Selkirk Mountains. It was built in 4 years, from 1984 to 1988, to replace old Connaught Tunnel opened in 1916 (which also was longest in Americas).

Building Mount Macdonald Tunnel is said to have improved the ruling grade of Canadian Pacific and eliminated need of bank engines for freight.

Are there any crossings, in USA, of Cascades, Sierra Nevada or Rockies, where a base tunnel of feasible length would result in significant improvement of ruling grade for freight?
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
chornedsnorkack no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 08:24 PM   #475
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

Quote:
Originally Posted by chornedsnorkack View Post
Are there any crossings, in USA, of Cascades, Sierra Nevada or Rockies, where a base tunnel of feasible length would result in significant improvement of ruling grade for freight?
Certainly yes, but that would require certainly more tunnels as the Rocky Mountains are wider than the Alps (but the latter are slightly higher and maybe steeper). This may be make the use of bank engine cheaper than building and running a long tunnel (that itself would require new and electric locomotives as using diesels would be impossible).

A train that actually needs three engines to cross the Alps in future will need two of them, and maybe only one if all the access lines will be built with low gradient.
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 10:14 PM   #476
mgk920
Nonhyphenated-American
 
mgk920's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Appleton, WI USA
Posts: 2,583
Likes (Received): 68

Quote:
Originally Posted by chornedsnorkack View Post
The longest tunnel in Americas is Mount Macdonald Tunnel at 14,7 km, under Selkirk Mountains. It was built in 4 years, from 1984 to 1988, to replace old Connaught Tunnel opened in 1916 (which also was longest in Americas).

Building Mount Macdonald Tunnel is said to have improved the ruling grade of Canadian Pacific and eliminated need of bank engines for freight.

Are there any crossings, in USA, of Cascades, Sierra Nevada or Rockies, where a base tunnel of feasible length would result in significant improvement of ruling grade for freight?
BNSF's ex GN Cascade Tunnel could potentially make use of one, the 2.2% grades leading up to it are not all that long. OTOH, the former GN mainline also has lengthy sections of 2.2% in western Montana, the main section of which crosses the Rockies at the continental divide without a tunnel, so no real advantage would be gained with a base tunnel in the Cascades. As for Cascade Tunnel, I would ream out its paralleling 'pioneer' tunnel (used for ease of access during its construction in the late 1920s) and use it for a second main track.

Mike
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
mgk920 no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 10:35 PM   #477
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

It is obvious that diesel traction limit the capacity of the (few, compared to Europe) North American railway tunnels. But the main limit on these north american railways are the tunnels, the steep grades, or the single track sections? I have read that these tunnels only allow two or three trains per hour because they have to be closed to allow fans to clear the air. Electrification may be useful.
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 10:45 PM   #478
chornedsnorkack
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 4,980
Likes (Received): 388

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post
Electrification may be useful.
Cascade Tunnel WAS electrified.

What about Tehachapi Pass? Nasty climb, at 2,52 %, yet reasonably short, crossing summit at just 1156 m or so. And connects Los Angeles with Central Valley. Could a base tunnel help here?
__________________

Highcliff liked this post
chornedsnorkack no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 1st, 2010, 11:55 PM   #479
Coccodrillo
Moderator
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 7,200
Likes (Received): 768

The most curvy and sinuous part of the railway west of the pass, where I imagine there are also steep slopes, is around 32 km/20 miles as the crow flies. The mountain part from around Bakersfield to around Mojave is around 57 km/35 miles long. How long and steep are the access ramps? On the Gotthard there are 40 km of continuous 2.7% ramp.

The Gotthard base tunnel is costing around 9 billions CHF, around the same in USD, I don't know if a private company can afford it as the return of investment would be too long. The Channel tunnel company had and still has big financial difficulties.
__________________
1.6.2016: Basistunnel!

für Güter die Bahn ~ pour vos marchandises le rail ~ chi dice merci dice ferrovia

Highcliff liked this post
Coccodrillo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old October 2nd, 2010, 07:24 PM   #480
mgk920
Nonhyphenated-American
 
mgk920's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Appleton, WI USA
Posts: 2,583
Likes (Received): 68

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coccodrillo View Post
The most curvy and sinuous part of the railway west of the pass, where I imagine there are also steep slopes, is around 32 km/20 miles as the crow flies. The mountain part from around Bakersfield to around Mojave is around 57 km/35 miles long. How long and steep are the access ramps? On the Gotthard there are 40 km of continuous 2.7% ramp.

The Gotthard base tunnel is costing around 9 billions CHF, around the same in USD, I don't know if a private company can afford it as the return of investment would be too long. The Channel tunnel company had and still has big financial difficulties.
Tehachapi Pass could possibly make use of a base tunnel as the approaches are very curvy (including an über-popular with the railfans 'loop' section) and steep. I'm not that sure on Cajon Pass, mainly regarding the altitude of the 'inland' side.

Yes, the current traffic throughput limit of those mountain tunnels in North America does relate to how long it takes to change their air after a train passes, usually 20-30 minutes depending on length. The new Mount MacDonald tunnel has a midpoint door that allows for faster ventilation.

Also, yes, Cascade tunnel WAS electrified when it opened in 1929, that was due to the use of steam locomotives on the rest of the North American railroad network at the time and the copious amounts of emissions that they produce - the tunnel would not have been possible without it. In fact, the tunnel that the current Cascade tunnel replaced was also electrified with locomotive changeout yards by each portal. When diesel locomotives took over completely from steam in the 1950s, the then Great Northern Railway studied the electrification (it only ran the fairly short distance from Skykomish to Wenatchee, WA) and determined that it would be most cost-effective to drop the 'wire' and ventilate the tunnel. This was done in 1956.

More recently, during the fuel price spike in 2007 and 2008, GN successor BNSF ('Burlington Northern Santa Fe') studied a wholesale electrification of their entire railroad, but no action had been taken by the time oil prices returned to a more 'normal' level.

A serious study into the final couple of decades of the Milwaukee Road will yield lots of interesting numbers on the economics of mainline electrification, which they made extensive use of in the northwestern USA (in addition to the very sad and sordid story of upper management incompetence that led to the company's demise).

I also anticipate some very serious studies of mainline electrification in the near-term future as California's emissions laws become progressively more strict. Already, diesel-electric/battery hybrid switching locomotives are coming into common use by both BNSF and Union Pacific in the Los Angeles area due to those rules.

I know that this is drifting off-topic for the Gotthard Base Tunnel, but nothing like this exists in a vacuum and other examples are well worth studying when planning your own course of action.

Mike
__________________

Highcliff liked this post

Last edited by mgk920; October 2nd, 2010 at 07:29 PM.
mgk920 no está en línea   Reply With Quote


Reply

Tags
alps

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Related topics on SkyscraperCity


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 02:24 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Feedback Buttons provided by Advanced Post Thanks / Like (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

SkyscraperCity ☆ In Urbanity We trust ☆ about us | privacy policy | DMCA policy

tech management by Sysprosium