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Old February 29th, 2012, 02:28 PM   #1061
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The Tohoku Shinkansen runs on the east side of Japan, which gets relatively less snow than the west Japan sea side(otoh the Joetsu Shinkansen runs through heavy snowfall territory). Iwate and Aomori are snowy however. Nevertheless, both trains and track are built for running in snow, so there may be relatively more countermeasures used by JR East than JR Tokai. As for delays, passengers are entitled to refund of limited express charges in cases of delay greater than 2 hours, a very rare case for shinkansen.

Last edited by k.k.jetcar; February 29th, 2012 at 02:53 PM.
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Old February 29th, 2012, 08:39 PM   #1062
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The Tōkaidō Shinkansen is older... The Tōhoku Shinkansen benefitted from the Tōkaidō Shinkansen's experience with snow, so it's designed to better handle snowy conditions.

The affection section of the Tōkaidō Shinkansen through the Sekigahara area is built on embankment, and I believe they can't put sprinkle too much water (used to melt the snow and keep it from flying up and attaching to the train underside) or it may cause the ballast to fall out of place or seep into the soil base and potentially cause embankment failure. The Tōhoku Shinkansen and later Shinkansen learned from these mistakes and were all built on viaduct with concrete beds and proper drainage and snow storage facilities.
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Old February 29th, 2012, 11:46 PM   #1063
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Thanks k.k and quashlo!
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Old March 4th, 2012, 08:35 AM   #1064
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Invitation-only test ride with new JR East E657 series limited express

These are the new sets to be introduced onto Jōban Line limited expresses (Super Hitachi and Fresh Hitachi) with the upcoming schedule changes in two weeks (2012.03.17). When the schedule changes enter effect, about 40 percent of these limited express runs (20 of 30 Super Hitachi runs and 9 of 41 Fresh Hitachi runs) will be operated with the E657 series, replacing some runs currently operated by 651 series and E653 series units.

A few pics from the invitation-only test ride on 2012.02.10 between Sanuki and Mito.
Source: http://rail.hobidas.com/blog/natori/

The test ride was operated with Unit K6, which departed Hitachi’s plant in Kudamatsu, Yamaguchi (southern Japan) on 2012.01.21 and arrived in Katsuta Rolling Stock Center on 2012.01.23. This is at Sanuki.



The test ride certificates issued by JR East to participants. The trains was signed as 臨時 “Extra”.



Pamphlet advertising the new E657, distributed by JR East’s Mito Office.



LED scrolls inside the train… Looks like these are full-color. They specially programmed text just for the test ride.



Car 6



Car 5 (green car)



Green car restroom. One of the better-looking restrooms among newer rolling stock… I think the wood (laminate?) paneling really helps.





Testing the WiMAX wireless broadband inside the train



Arrival at Mito. This photo might show it best, but the livery isn’t actually white—it’s a very light pink.



Videos:

Test ride scenes at Mito (2012.02.10):



Regular revenue service only begins with the schedule changes on 2012.03.17, but the series actually began carrying revenue passengers a little earlier as part of a special run 復興フラガール号 (“Revival Hula Girl”) yesterday (2012.03.03). Scenes at Ueno:

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Old March 5th, 2012, 11:24 AM   #1065
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great update as usual
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Old March 17th, 2012, 02:53 AM   #1066
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New JR East CMs:



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Old March 17th, 2012, 09:28 AM   #1067
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quashlo View Post
New JR East CMs:


They do know how to pull on your heartstrings!
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Old March 17th, 2012, 07:38 PM   #1068
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Some video's of the last day in service of the Shinkansen 100 & 300 series.









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Old March 22nd, 2012, 08:17 AM   #1069
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Thanks! Saw it on the news as well.



Apparently more than 1000 people went to say farewell at Tokyo station. They also mention that during a certain timetable some Nozomi-trains passed Nagoya station! I wonder how much faster a N700 could make the run with no stops at all between Tokyo and Shin-osaka.


I have been watching some old commercial of JR Tokai recently. I particular like this one:



I think it's really cool how the 300-series stands out along all the 0- and 100-series. It looks really modern.


This is also cute:

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Old March 23rd, 2012, 02:34 PM   #1070
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Just travelled the entirety of the route from Kagoshima-Chuo to Nagoya and on Sunday will be continuing to Tokyo, thanks to some 1 year anniversary deals on the Kyushu shinkansen! More to come when I have time to post more.
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Old March 30th, 2012, 11:01 AM   #1071
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Tsugaru Tetsudo - It's a Party Train from the 40's
http://intotheringoffire.blogspot.jp...-from-40s.html


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Old March 30th, 2012, 11:16 AM   #1072
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some Karaoke party train




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Old April 1st, 2012, 06:51 AM   #1073
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Toshiba wins major new order from Hyundai Rotem to supply key electrical parts for Korail locomotives
http://www.toshiba.co.jp/about/press/2012_03/pr0702.htm

Quote:
7 Mar, 2012

TOKYO—Toshiba Corporation (TOKYO: 6502) today announced that it has won a second major contract from South Korea's Hyundai Rotem Company for the supply of key electrical parts for 8500 series electric locomotives for Korean Railroad Corporation (Korail). The contract covers traction drive systems and auxiliary power supply systems for 31 6,600kW electric freight locomotives in the 8500 series, with delivery scheduled for April 2012 through to March 2013, and has a value of more than 3 billion yen.

Toshiba is currently delivering to Hyundai Rotem of traction drive and auxiliary power supply systems for 56 8500 series locomotives under a March 2010 contract and a related technology transfer agreement in 2011. Under the latter agreement, Hyundai Rotem is conducting procurement of parts for Power Converter Cubicle and Traction Motor and assembly and test of Power Converter Cubicle and Traction Motor.

Toshiba has been active in the South Korean rolling stock market since 1990s, and has supplied electrical equipment for more than 1,000 units of rolling stock, including cars and locomotives. Toshiba is responding to current replacement of rolling stock by South Korean railroad operators by positioning South Korea as a key overseas market, and will seek to secure further contracts in continuing cooperation with Hyundai Rotem Company.

Outline of the order
Purchaser: Hyundai Rotem Company
Items supplied: Electrical parts for six-axle, 6,600kW electric locomotives (8500 series) for freight train
Shipment term: April 2012 to March 2013
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Old April 1st, 2012, 06:51 AM   #1074
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Hitachi approaches Finmeccanica over rail business
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8ER25Y20120327

Quote:
MILAN/ROME, March 27 (Reuters) - Japanese group Hitachi has approached Finmeccanica about buying some of the rail operations the Italian defence firm wants to sell, a union official said on Tuesday, raising hopes the seller's turnaround plan could gain traction.

Finmeccanica, which on Tuesday announced a 2.3 billion euro ($3.06 billion) net loss for 2011, singled out last year its loss-making train-making unit AnsaldoBreda, its rail signalling-systems affiliate Ansaldo STS, and power engineering firm AnsaldoEnergia as non-strategic.

"Hitachi is interested (in AnsaldoBreda and Ansaldo STS). But any marriage would need time and I don't think it's around the corner," Giovanni Contento, national secretary at Italian union UILM, told Reuters.

He said AnsaldoBreda and unions had reached a deal on Monday over the restructuring, a step which analysts say could be crucial for any bidder to enter final talks.

The agreement document, seen by Reuters, sees breakeven being reached in 2014 and cost savings for 280 million euros in three years, of which 45 million euros this year.

A source close to the talks told Reuters that discussions with Hitachi over a stake sale in AnsaldoBreda had intensified in recent months after interest from U.S. General Electric had cooled.

Ansaldo STS, which alone has a market capitalisation of about 1 billion euros, is the most attractive of the transportation assets earmarked for a possible sale.

AnsaldoBreda, which employs about 3,000 people partly in unemployment-plagued cities of Naples and Reggio Calabria, is loss making and has a debt of around 500 million euros.

Clean-up
Finmeccanica unveiled on Tuesday a 2011 net loss of 2.3 billion euros, after booking one-off charges of 3 billion euros to clean up its balance sheet under a new management.

The company, Italy's second biggest industrial employer with some 75,000 staff, underwent a management shake-up in December in the wake of an ongoing corruption probe in Italy that forced out previous boss Pier Francesco Guarguaglini.

The appointment of insider Giuseppe Orsi, who took over Guarguaglini's powers as chairman, was a test for the new Italian government of Mario Monti and reflects in part a change in tone compared to the previous government of Silvio Berlusconi.

"2011 results remove uncertainty and lay solid foundations for our future which will mark a break with the past from the industrial, strategic, management and ethical point of view," Orsi said at a press conference.

Orsi, an aeronautical engineer who started his career 39 years ago in a firm now part of the conglomerate, announced last year plans to sell 1 billion euros of assets by end-20 12 to avoid the group's credit rating being cut to junk.

He is pressing ahead with rebuilding the group's reputation and turning its business round by focusing on core defence and aerospace operations.

Guarguaglini is under investigation as part of the probe focusing on accusations of false invoices and slush funds to pay bribes. He has denied wrongdoing.

Foreign interest
The source close to the talks said several foreign groups, including Hitachi, had expressed interest for Finmeccanica's Ansaldo STS. The source mentioned Bombardier Inc, Alstom SA, Siemens AG and Mitsubishi.

Finmeccanica and Alstom declined to comment. The other companies were not immediately available for comment.

In March, Vinhod Sahai, a Milan-based Indian businessmen, told Reuters he had made an expression of interest for AnsaldoBreda on behalf of an Indian investor.

Earlier on Tuesday, Italian newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore said in an unsourced report Hitachi could be close to buying a 50 percent stake in AnsaldoBreda and 29 percent of Ansaldo STS.

An Hitachi spokesman in Tokyo said the company's policy was not to comment on rumours.

Contento, the union leader, said a U.S. or a Japanese partner could make a better fit for AnsaldoBreda because he expected partnership with larger European rivals such as Alstom or Siemens to lead to job losses.

Approval from trade unions would make it easier for Finmeccanica to finalise any deal.

Finmeccanica shares hit a 9-day high on Tuesday before closing almost 11 percent higher at 3.852 euros. The stock has lost 60 percent over the last year as the corruption probe and expected losses took their toll.
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Old April 1st, 2012, 03:26 PM   #1075
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quashlo View Post
Hitachi approaches Finmeccanica over rail business
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8ER25Y20120327
Very interesting, I wonder if Hitachi can turn around the awful mess that is Ansaldo Breda
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Old April 2nd, 2012, 10:01 AM   #1076
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JR East begins final testing of lithium ion battery train
http://www.jreast.co.jp/press/2011/20120204.pdf

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JR東日本では、非電化区間の新たな環境負荷の低減方策として「蓄電池駆動電車システム」の開発をすすめております。2008 年度から車両センター構内や電化区間で「NE Train スマート電池くん」を使用して走行試験を実施し、性能評価や技術的検証を重ねてきました。今年度は試作した充電設備による急速充放電試験や、蓄電池を座席下に収納した走行試験を行っています。

このたび、試験の最終段階として非電化区間である烏山線での充放電試験、走行試験を実施し、システムとしての実用性を確認します。

システム概要(別紙1、別紙2)
蓄電池駆動電車システムは車両に大容量の蓄電池を搭載して非電化区間の走行を可能にするもので、気動車のエンジンから発生する排気ガスの解消や、二酸化炭素・騒音低減の実現を目指しています。

この電車は、電化区間では通常の電車と同様に架線からの電力により走行すると同時に蓄電池を充電します。非電化区間では蓄電池の電力で走行し、一部の駅に設置する専用の充電設備において走行に必要な充電を行います。

試験スケジュール
烏山駅に仮設した試験用充電設備を使用し、非電化区間での走行と急速充電を組み合わせた最終的な性能・機能確認試験を行います。

実施時期
2 月および3 月

走行区間
烏山線 宝積寺駅~烏山駅間(非電化区間)(試験は、烏山線の営業時間外に行います)
東北本線 小金井駅~宝積寺駅間(電化区間)

開発経緯(別紙3)
2008 年度より車両の開発に着手しました。その後、2009 年度に走行試験および地上充電設備の開発を開始し、現在にいたっています。

スマート電池くんの概要〔主要諸元〕
車両形式:クモヤE995形
車両寸法(長さ×幅×高さ):19500mm×2800mm×4052mm
車両重量:39.9t
最高速度:100km/h
充電方法:パンタグラフを使用して充電
電力変換装置:架線の直流1500V と蓄電池用600Vを双方向に変換
主回路用蓄電地:リチウムイオン蓄電池: 600V-72kWh
モータ制御装置:VVVFインバータ方式入力電圧600V
モータ方式・出力:誘導電動機95kW×2台
This is the final series of JR East’s R&D trials with lithium ion battery trains. They’ve been testing the “Smart Denchi-kun” set inside their rolling stock R&D center and on electrified sections of track since FY2008, and will now do final testing of the technology’s performance and functionality in conditions very close to actual revenue service, including rapid charging and discharging of the battery and a practical design that puts the batteries beneath the train seats. The train will be tested on the Koganei – Hōshakuji section of the Tōhoku Main Line (an electrified section) and the entire length of the unelectrified Karasuyama Line. Testing on the latter will only take place outside of regular service hours.

ANN news report (2012.02.21).
Approx. 30% of JR East’s zairaisen network is unelectrified. The train will be able to travel 20 km on a single charge.

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Old April 4th, 2012, 07:55 PM   #1077
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just some news out of the Philippines...
they've begun testing the EMUs donated by Japan last year... lines are not electrified in the Philippines so they're using a locomotive to haul the trains...

also notice the window screens...

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Old April 4th, 2012, 09:58 PM   #1078
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Just a few questions:

Why were the pantos retained? They just didn't bother to remove them?

Why are some of the doors sealed?

I'm assuming the interior seating arrangement (all longtigunal) has been retained, correct? How frequent are these particular services?
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Old April 5th, 2012, 11:34 AM   #1079
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quashlo View Post
Just a few questions:

Why were the pantos retained? They just didn't bother to remove them?

Why are some of the doors sealed?

I'm assuming the interior seating arrangement (all longtigunal) has been retained, correct? How frequent are these particular services?
yeah, probably just didn't bother... not sure about the doors though... i'm guessing they're limited with the gensets and as to how much power they can supply; remember that they're basically just improvising with the power since lines aren't electrified...

yes seating looks like it hasn't changed... they'll be used for commuter services probably around 30-min intervals together with the Kiha trains and DMUs from Hyundai...

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Old April 11th, 2012, 07:59 AM   #1080
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JR Kyūshū to aim for stock listing in FY2016
http://www.nikkei.com/news/local/art...E2E2EBE0E0E5E2

Quote:
 九州旅客鉄道(JR九州)は5日、2012年度からの5カ年の中期経営計画を発表、最終年度となる16年度までに株式上場を実現させる目標を掲げた。博多駅の新駅ビルの開業などで稼ぐ力は高まっている。ただ、本業の鉄道事業で公共交通機関の役割を担う同社が不採算路線から次々と撤退するのは難しい。赤字続きの同事業は14年度以降に黒字転換を見込むが、国が支出した経営安定基金の運用益頼みの経営は今後も続きそうだ。

 中期経営計画では、16年度の連結売上高は11年度見込み比12%増の3700億円、営業利益は約2.5倍の250億円を目標に据えた。鉄道事業の売り上げは伸び悩むものの、駅ビル開発など非鉄道事業は20%増の2200億円以上を見込んでおり、全売上高の6割以上を占めるとみている。

 鉄道事業は旧国鉄が分割・民営化され、JR九州が株式会社となった後、営業黒字になったことは一度もない。5日、記者会見した唐池恒二社長は「3年、ないしは5年後には黒字化させたい」と収益改善に自信を示した。11年度にピークを迎えた新幹線車両などの減価償却費が年々負担が軽くなるほか、定年退職者の増加で人件費も減る。

 一方で、公共交通を手掛ける同社が不採算路線から相次ぎ撤退するのは難しいという事情もあり「鉄道事業の黒字はぎりぎり(の水面上)で、きわどい」(唐池社長)。そのため、国の経営安定基金3877億円の運用益を上乗せして一定の経常利益を確保する経営が続くのは必至だ。

 安定基金と運用益について唐池社長は「上場後も当然必要」と語る一方、「上場後、基金に甘えて収支改善を怠ることはない」と強調した。

 鉄道事業の伸び悩みを補うため、JR新大分駅の新駅ビル建設など沿線の都市開発を強化する。

 多角化の一環として大規模太陽光発電所(メガソーラー)事業に参入する方針も明らかにした。九州南部に出力2000キロワット規模で建設する計画で、早ければ今年度内にも発電する。

 今後も新規事業への進出を検討するほか、ドラッグストア事業などでのM&A(合併・買収)も積極的に進め、事業の裾野を広げる考えだ。
According to JR Kyūshū’s latest five-year business plan published on 2012.04.05, the railway will aim for a stock listing by FY2016. With the opening of the full route of the Kyūshū Shinkansen and the new station building at Hakata Station (JR Hakata Station), JR Kyūshū has built a strong financial foundation, and its railway business as a whole is expected to turn profitable starting in FY2014—an amazing feat for one of the three “island” JR companies (Kyūshū, Shikoku, and Hokkaidō), which carry a lot of dead weight with them (i.e., non-profitable local lines). If realized, JR Kyūshū will become the first of the island JRs to be listed on the stock exchange.

Since becoming privatized after the dismantling of JNR, JR Kyūshū has yet to post an operating profit for its railway business, but with dropping depreciation costs for Shinkasen rolling stock (peak was FY2011) and declining personnel costs with more employees reaching retirement age, the railway hopes to post an operating profit in 3 to 5 years. The business will only barely make a profit, and since it’s extremely difficult for them to drop money-losing lines, they will still be receiving ¥387.7 billion in stabilization funds from the national government.

By FY2016, the railway aims to increase consolidated revenues 12% from FY2011 to ¥370 billion, and operating profit 150% to ¥25 billion. While revenues in the railway business will struggle, JR Kyūshū expects to increase non-railway business revenues (e.g., station tenant building development) by 20% to over ¥220 billion, or over 60% of total revenues. Included among these trackside urban development projects is the new station building for JR Ōita Station, which was recently fully elevated. Other diversication efforts include entry into the solar power industry—revolving around construction of a 2,000 kW megasolar plant in southern Kyūshū which will open as early as this fiscal year—as well as mergers and acquisitions in the drugstore industry and expansion of their distribution, restaurant, hotel, and real estate businesses. In particular, the railway will include a condominium development as part of the new the new Ōita Station building, although the scale of the development has yet to be fleshed out.
__________________
San Francisco
Japan 2013; Japan 2011
: Tōkyō I, II, III (Kamakura), IV (Yokohama), V; Ōsaka I (+Kyōto +Kōbe), II (Kyōto), III (Nara); Hiroshima; Fukuoka; Nagasaki; Kita-Kyushu + Shimonoseki; Nikkō
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