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Old November 20th, 2014, 12:29 AM   #2441
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TedStriker, I've edited my post, so it's clear know what I'm asking and stating. :-)
We are talking about the same things.
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Old November 20th, 2014, 05:15 PM   #2442
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There is a project called MegaHub Lehrte:

Construction on an innovative intermodal terminal with automated container sorting technology is getting underway in Lehrte, to the east of Hannover in Germany. It is expected to become a key node in the European rail freight network, as it lies at the intersection of the North Sea-Baltic, Orient/East-Med and Scandinavian-Mediterranean Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) corridors. Under development since 1997, the MegaHub project has experienced various interruptions to the process, however it is now expected that trial operation will begin in 2016, with the following year bringing a full start of revenue service. Six transfer racks with a minimal operational length of 700 m, accommodating the longest trains able to run across the TEN-T network, will comprise the centerpiece of the terminal. A fully-automated container sorting system is the most innovative element of the project.

Source: http://trid.trb.org/view.aspx?id=1326514



Source (German): http://www.deutschebahn.com/de/konze...egahub_lehrte/

The basic idea:
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Old November 20th, 2014, 05:19 PM   #2443
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Has construction of this actually begun yet?

The other MegaHub in Duisburg is largely complete and shows up on Bing's aerial photos but it's not in service yet.
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Old November 20th, 2014, 05:45 PM   #2444
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They started constructing some access streets. It is expected to open in 2018, not 2016, due to changes in the plans. Residents and the city Lehrte complained about new numbers of TEU moved, so there will be some modifications I think. Financing is secured and it is generally not believed that the project will be stopped.

The MegaHub project close to Hannover is different compared to the existing hubs, because it has not only two large cranes for lateral loading and unloading, but also an automated system for carrying containers longitudinally, thus reducing crane operations and transfer time between rail and rail. The planned standing time of the trains is 2 hours.
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Old November 20th, 2014, 05:56 PM   #2445
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Here's another presentation: http://www.deutschebahn.com/file/444...orstellung.pdf

The automated longitudinal transport of containers will be done by 12 special transport units on rails (three rails in the middle, see figure above). According to the presentation they have investigated or are investigating an alternative system with automated guided vehicles.
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Old November 21st, 2014, 05:43 PM   #2446
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This terminal will make even more sense if the projected "Y-Trasse" (new lines from Hannover to Hamburg and Bremen) will be buildt as it will sit between the line from the South and the the separation of the two lines to the two most important German ports.
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Old November 21st, 2014, 06:52 PM   #2447
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Thanks. I hadn't heard of the Y-Trasse proposals before. Interesting little write-up on Wikipedia for anyone else like me who was living in ignorance.
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Old November 21st, 2014, 07:32 PM   #2448
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Well, the Y-Trasse as originally designed probably won't be built. However, there is a huge demand for more rail infrastructure between the harbours of Hamburg, Bremen/Bremerhaven, Wilhelmshaven (JadeWeserPort) and Hannover, where most of the southbound freight traffic passes through, either via Bremen/Hamburg-Uelzen-Hannover/Lehrte or via Bremen/Hamburg-Verden-Hannover/Seelze.

The original Y-Trasse is politically dead and maybe it is also not the best solution in terms of freight traffic. It was planned as a pure high speed line for long distance trains. The idea was that freight trains use the space that is freed up on existing tracks.

So, as mentioned in the Wikipedia article, Deutsche Bahn presented a list of alternatives, which try to combine the necessary capacity for freight with advantages for high speed trains.

I personally like the Ashausen-Suderburg proposal most. It comprises two new tracks from Ashausen (south of Maschen, the marshalling yard south of Hamburg) to Suderburg (south of Uelzen) and a flyover in Celle, where most passenger traffic to Hannover Hbf splits from the freight trains which go to Lehrte. It may be necessary to build a third track between Suderburg and Celle as well.

The advantages of this variant are that long distance trains are sped up 10 - 15 minutes, making it possible to travel Hannover-Hamburg in less than 60 minutes, that least people are affected due to noise* and that it should provide the additional capacity needed for freight (both on the new and existing tracks).

*The new line bypasses Lüneburg, Winsen and Uelzen, so that there will be much less noise in those cities, especially at night when most of the freight trains would run on the new line.
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Old November 21st, 2014, 07:46 PM   #2449
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Additionally, there are plans for an Ostkorridor (East Corridor). This denotes a project, that reroutes freight traffic, which goes from the harbours to southeast Germany and further, to existing lines which are less used.

In principle, the following route is envisioned: Hamburg - Uelzen - Stendal - Magdeburg - area of Halle/Leipzig - Hof - Regensburg - (München/Passau).

This, however, also requires some upgrading measures, e.g.:
- electrification between Hof and Regensburg
- doubling of tracks between Uelzen and Stendal

And IMO it can only be an additional measure to the Y-Trasse or its alternatives.
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Old November 23rd, 2014, 01:58 PM   #2450
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The Eastern route will make significant more investment and heckling with NIMBYs necessary imo. And it would bypass connections to several industrial centres (Frankfurt-Rhein-Neckar, Nuremberg).
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Old November 24th, 2014, 03:05 PM   #2451
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I know that in Europe it is widespread that trains are allowed to arrive on the same station track, the track being mostly devided into separate sections for that.

Anybody here more familiar with that. Are there some special signals and allowed approaching speeds for theese situations? Especially the case two trains arrive then couple and continue as one train.

As for Germany how can a train serving passengers enter into the same LZB block for coupling operation? Or are there also station tracks whose are not divided into sections by block or signal and trains are allowed to arrive and couple?

Thanks in advance
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Old November 24th, 2014, 03:50 PM   #2452
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thun View Post
The Eastern route will make significant more investment and heckling with NIMBYs necessary imo. And it would bypass connections to several industrial centres (Frankfurt-Rhein-Neckar, Nuremberg).
I guess it is meant for trains to Austria and Munich. I am not sure whether it needs more investment, most tracks already exist. But you shouldn't see it as an alternative, but rather as an addition to relieve certain nodes as Hannover etc. As for the NIMBYs I don't know...
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Old November 25th, 2014, 09:26 AM   #2453
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True.
But electrification is a big investment, e.g. you would probably have to rebuild all overpasses. Current axle load could be an issue, too.

I guess it would be a mid-term addition. There are probably not as many trains from Hamburg to (Upper) Austria to make that investment feasible (I lived on the Donau railway for a few years). And for trains from Munich, the line via Würzburg is still shorter.
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Old November 25th, 2014, 09:45 AM   #2454
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtManDoo View Post
As for Germany how can a train serving passengers enter into the same LZB block for coupling operation?
As far as I know it can't. LZB was never intended for shunting operations. It was originally only intended for enabling train operations over 160 km/h and later extended to enable improved usage of congested lines. However the system has a special 'drive by sight' function that allows drivers to pass red signals with a limited speed that could be used for this purpose. The simpler solution however would be to drop the train from LZB before it enters the station, perform the shunting operations under conventional signalling and rejoin LZB while it exits again.
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Old November 25th, 2014, 10:40 AM   #2455
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In the Netherlands, the safety system (ATB-EG) does not enforce drivers stopping at a red light if they approach it with a velocity of less than 40 km/h. In the past, this feat was used to enable shunting operations. Newer safety systems (ETCS, ATB-NG, ATB-Vv) do enforce signals at dangers and prevent a train from passing them.

Passing a red light was deemed confusing for drivers and was not compliant with the rule book, so a different signalling aspect was created: blinking yellow. This means "Proceed with caution, you are entering an occupied section of track", but does allow the driver to continue towards a platform where a train is already standing.
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Old November 25th, 2014, 11:03 AM   #2456
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thun View Post

True.
But electrification is a big investment, e.g. you would probably have to rebuild all overpasses. Current axle load could be an issue, too.

I guess it would be a mid-term addition. There are probably not as many trains from Hamburg to (Upper) Austria to make that investment feasible (I lived on the Donau railway for a few years). And for trains from Munich, the line via Würzburg is still shorter.
They already electrified Reichenbach-Hof in the recent years. I think an electrification also makes sense for public transport. Of course, it is expensive, the question is what the alternatives are and how expensive those are.
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Old November 25th, 2014, 12:22 PM   #2457
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtManDoo View Post
I know that in Europe it is widespread that trains are allowed to arrive on the same station track, the track being mostly devided into separate sections for that.

Anybody here more familiar with that. Are there some special signals and allowed approaching speeds for theese situations? Especially the case two trains arrive then couple and continue as one train.
In Belgium : the procedure used for that is the same as when a loco
must be coupled to a train. The loco will enter the occupied block with
a "shunting" authorization (signal red + white), telling the train driver to
drive "on sight" and remain able to stop before any obstacle.

This procedure is also used when two short trains are sharing the same
platform.
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Old November 25th, 2014, 04:30 PM   #2458
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From Rail Journal:

Quote:
http://www.railjournal.com/index.php...ml?channel=542

Nordbahn start hit by rolling stock delays
Tuesday, November 25, 2014



DELAYS in delivery of Stadler Flirt EMUs for the new Nordbahn service, which is due to commence on Schleswig-Holstein's central network from Hamburg to Itzehoe and Wrist on December 14, is putting the start of operations in doubt

Currently three of the 15 trains ordered, seven five-car class 1429 and eight six-car class 1430 EMUs, have been delivered with three more vehicles set to arrive by the end of the month. However, it remains unclear whether the operator will have enough trains or if they will be approved in time for the start of operations, with the timetable requiring 13 of the 15 vehicles to be in service at peak times and eight for off-peak periods.

Nordbahn, which is a joint venture of AKN and Benex, says it is developing plans for replacement trains in case it has insufficient Flirt EMUs. It is also set to face problems on the 2.9km branch from Wrist to Kellinghuse, which was due to be rebuilt in time for the start of operations. However, with no progress on the €8m project, alternative work worth €1.5m is underway in Wrist to create a 236m turnback siding for the stabling of Nordbahn EMUs

.
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Old November 25th, 2014, 07:31 PM   #2459
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Why are so many trains not fitted with drivers cab doors anymore? I think that is outright dangerous.
If a driver needs to access the tracks for whatever reason (unfortunately a suicide comes to mind) he/she can only do so via the passenger doors. On an increasing number of services there is no other staff on board besides the driver, so there's nothing to prevent other people from doing the same. That could cause dangerous situations.
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Old November 25th, 2014, 07:55 PM   #2460
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexNL View Post
Passing a red light was deemed confusing for drivers and was not compliant with the rule book, so a different signalling aspect was created: blinking yellow. This means "Proceed with caution, you are entering an occupied section of track", but does allow the driver to continue towards a platform where a train is already standing.
As far as I know blinking yellow is the only not fail safe signal aspect in the Dutch signalling system. If the blinking fails and the signal would display a yellow, that's a less restricting aspect.

Passing a red signal in Germany is much more common. Apart from the occasional malfunction, there is also the issue that in Germany only the designed routes can be used by the interlockings. For every other route it will not be possible to clear the red signal. That can be very inconvenient in case of track maintenance for instance. For this purpose the Germans have an alternate clearance signal ('Ersatzsignal'). However, usage of this signal is the sole responsibility of the signaler because you are overriding parts of the safety provided by the interlocking.

I also wonder how they are going to perform coupling with ETCS in the future. My guess would be to stop at the previous signal, switch to shunting mode, wait for clearance, drive up to the other train and then resume normal operations. However in the various countries using ETCS this could be different, because despite sharing the same signalling systems, the operating procedures may still be entirely different.
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