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Old October 14th, 2012, 09:56 PM   #1141
Equario
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It's imperial train, isn't it?
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Old October 14th, 2012, 10:11 PM   #1142
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Yes, it is.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 10:19 PM   #1143
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Thailand, Japan agree to cooperate on high-speed rail
http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nb20121011b4.html

Quote:
BANGKOK — Transport minister Yuichiro Hata said Tuesday in Bangkok that he has signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in railroad services with the Thai government.

Speaking to reporters, Hata said he was told that Thailand wants to start a high-speed rail project sometime next year and he expressed his wish to extend as much cooperation as possible from Japan.

The document concerns sharing of railway knowhow and cosponsorship of seminars, and the two countries will set up a working group for exchanging information, according to the minister.

In a meeting Monday with Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, Hata made pitches for Japan's rail and irrigation technologies.

Having experienced devastating floods last year, Thailand is planning to solicit bids for an international tender on flood mitigation measures.

Hata said he pledged to Yingluck that the Japanese government will provide sustained cooperation if a Japanese-led consortium is selected.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 10:21 PM   #1144
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Sumitomo, Nippon Sharyō tapped for Amtrak bilevel car order
http://www.railwayage.com/index.php/...l#.UHxbYnnwSIk

Quote:
The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) on Thursday said that, on behalf of the departments of transportation from Illinois, Michigan, and Missouri, it has issued a Notice of Intent to Award to Sumitomo Corp. of America to design, build, and deliver 130 bilevel passenger railcars for use in regional intercity rail corridors in California and the Midwest.

The Notice of Intent to Award does not signify that a contract has been awarded, but that a potential vendor has been identified, Caltrans stressed. However, a fully executed agreement is expected to be in place by mid-November.

New York-based Sumitomo Corp. of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sumitomo Corp., submitted a bid of $352.3 million. It has provided bilevel cars to U.S. regional passenger operators, including Virginia Railway Express (photo above) and Chicago-based Metra, as well as single-level passenger equipment to various North American regional passenger railroads.

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Old October 15th, 2012, 10:25 PM   #1145
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Hitachi Europe launches European Rail Research Centre
http://www.hitachi.com/New/cnews/121010b.html

Quote:
Research Centre underpins growing importance of Hitachi's rail business in the UK

LONDON, October 10, 2012 - Hitachi Europe Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE:6501), today announced that it has launched a European Rail Research Centre to support the global growth of Social Innovation Business. The European Rail Research Centre will be located within the Hitachi Rail Europe Ltd. office in central London and will be part of Hitachi Europe's Transportation Energy & Environment Research Laboratory, European Research Division.

The newly established European Rail Research Centre will focus on a broad range of areas, including rolling stock design (interior and exterior), manufacturing practices, maintenance and Traffic Management Systems.

Hitachi is enhancing its global research bases to promote localized research and development. Hitachi Europe already has a network of research facilities throughout Europe, consisting of the Hitachi Cambridge Laboratory, the Hitachi Design Centre Europe, the Information and Communication Technology Laboratory, and the Automotive R&D Laboratory. In April 2011, Hitachi Europe newly established the Transportation Energy & Environment Research Laboratory, expanding its European R&D activities to cover its railway, coal-fired thermal power, power electronics and automotive businesses.

Railway Systems is one Hitachi's core business areas in Europe, with Hitachi Rail Europe recently agreeing to supply, service and maintain the next fleet of rail carriages for the UK's Intercity Express Programme. Hitachi Rail Europe has also received an order from Network Rail Infrastructure Limited ("Network Rail") in the UK for a prototype Traffic Management System. The European Rail Research Centre will support Hitachi's expanding rail business and improve the Hitachi Group's presence in Europe.

Shigeru Azuhata, Executive Vice President and Executive Officer, Hitachi Group Chief Technology Officer, commented: "At Hitachi, we place huge importance on research and development, as demonstrated by our extensive laboratories around the world. With the growth of our rail business in Europe and the UK, we felt that it was paramount to establish a dedicated research facility directly where key issues in areas such as maintenance, manufacture and Traffic Management Systems will present themselves. This growth in our local capabilities will enable us to better pursue our company's global growth strategy for our Social Innovation Business."

Kiyoshi Yamamoto, Managing Director of Hitachi Europe, commented: "We expect the European Rail Research Centre to support Hitachi's railway business in Europe and contribute to the development of the region's railway infrastructure. The Research Centre will provide safe and high quality solutions by applying Hitachi's leading technologies. In the future, we'd like to expand the research centre with a local office to directly support Hitachi Rail Europe's planned manufacturing and assembly plant in the UK."

Alistair Dormer, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Hitachi Rail Europe, commented: "Having the new European Rail Research Centre located in our European headquarters is a great asset and shows the level of long-term thinking and investment by Hitachi's Research & Development Division. While Hitachi Rail Europe builds up its manufacturing facility in the UK, the findings of the Research Centre will feed into how we best establish the processes in the plant. Our recent contract win for a prototype for a UK Traffic Management System will be supported by local research. The European Rail Research Centre's work on maintenance practices as carried out by our facility for the Class 395 train in Ashford, Kent, will help us hone our capabilities for maintaining the Super Express Trains for the Intercity Express Programme, showcasing how we are working locally in the UK and Europe on local research topics."

Overview of European Rail Research Centre
Name: European Rail Research Centre, European R&D Centre, Hitachi Europe Ltd.
Research Content: R&D areas including rolling stock design (interior and exterior), manufacturing practices, maintenance and Traffic Management Systems
Launch date: October 10, 2012
Place: 7th Floor, 40 Holborn Viaduct, London EC1N 2PB, United Kingdom (Located within Hitachi Rail Europe Ltd.)
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Old October 15th, 2012, 10:26 PM   #1146
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Kinki Sharyō develops battery-powered train
http://www.kinkisharyo.co.jp/ja/news/news121010-1.htm

Quote:
当社は、非電化路線向けの充電型バッテリー電車「Smart BEST」を開発、製作しました。

 当社は開発コンセプト「環境に優しい」「人に優しい」を基に2010年に『架線があってもなくても走行可能なリチウムイオン蓄電池駆動100%低床LRV「ameri TRAM」』を発表し、米国各地でデモンストレーション走行を行いました。その際、国内外から、非電化区間において外部からの充電をすることなく長距離に渡って走行することができる車両を強く要望され、今回、発電装置を搭載し、自車内で充電する自己完結型の充電型バッテリー電車のプロトタイプを開発しました。

この充電型バッテリー電車の概要は以下の通りです。

「Smart BEST」は大容量のバッテリー電源で駆動走行します。バッテリーが放電した分だけを小型のエンジン発電機により効率よく充電します。そのため、1両あたりのエンジン出力は従来の気動車の1/3から1/4程度の大きさにすることが可能です。このことにより、エンジンの騒音・振動や排気ガスが軽減され、燃費も大幅に向上します。充電はバッテリーの残量を常時モニタリングしながら、走行状況に応じて最適に行います。

従来の電車は回生電力を架線等に戻しながら活用する省エネルギーシステムを有していますが、本車両は自ら発電し、かつ回生時の電力を自らのバッテリーに回収し、走行および補助機器(空調機、照明等)に使用する「エネルギーの地産地消」を実現しています。

本車両は発電のためのエンジンを搭載していますが、駆動は気動車と違い、モーターで行うため、電車と同等の加速・減速性能を出す事ができます。また、乗務員が操作する機器や配置も電車と同じにできるため、取扱い・操作や保守作業が電車と共通化できます。

 「ameri TRAM」と「Smart BEST」の開発を通して、低床路面電車と高床近郊形車両、両タイプの架線レス区間を走行する基本技術を開発いたしました。架線レス区間を電車並みに走行することが可能になれば、変電設備や架線が不要になり鉄道設備のコスト低減や、省エネルギーに貢献できます。

 また、電化・非電化区内の相互乗り入れ等が可能になり、乗客の利便性が上がると共に円滑な車両運行ができます。更に、地上設備がシンプルになり、自然災害への対応能力が高くなります。今後、新線建設が予定されている新興国への展開を考え、本線走行試験に臨み、更なる開発を続けてまいります。



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Old October 16th, 2012, 08:34 AM   #1147
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Video of above [Smart BEST] train demo'ing at the Kinki Sharyo Plant in Higashi Osaka last Thursday:
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Old October 29th, 2012, 02:49 PM   #1148
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Train speed under bad visibility?

When my sources are correct on a large part of the normal speed Japanese railways speed is controlled by the aspect of the signals. The aspect of the signal you are passing indicates the speed you're allowed to go in that block. If you exceed the speed at the signal the ATS system will bring you to a halt. Also you're only allowed to approach a level crossing at a speed at which you can stop before crossing it, should it be blocked.

Normally that's fine, because you can see a signal and crossings well in advance. But what happens when fog or some other condition impairs visibility? Most signals do not have repeater signals in front. Are speeds limited to the distance you can actually see? Doesn't that have severe impacts on the time table?
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Old October 29th, 2012, 03:58 PM   #1149
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ATS-P has overspeed protection so yes, going past the speed limit will stop the train. As far as crossings, there is a an obstruction indicator that flashes if the crossing is obstructed, I assume this provides adequate warning in low-vis situations (though not always enough-see below). Apparently in low visibility conditions, it is practice on faster trains to have an extra crewperson in the cab to aid the driver with calling the signals. As far as repeater signals, they are used on curves, low clearance areas, etc. where line of sight is obstructed.

Apparently not slowing down (ltd. express Hakutaka):


Aftermath of grade crossing accident involving ltd. express train and dumptruck in Hokkaido in blizzard (no fatalities):
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Old October 29th, 2012, 08:14 PM   #1150
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You have pretty much confirmed my suspicions. When you run a train at 130 km/h in 200m visibility you can have all the assistance in the world, but you're not going to come to a halt within that distance.

For the signalling: The lack of a distant signal under normal circumstances surprises me. I can't imagine Japan doesn't have it's share of fog, blizzards and other visibility limiting weather. It does explain why changing from ATS to ATC can bring big improvements. ATC can provide the advance viewing ATS can't.
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Old October 30th, 2012, 08:06 AM   #1151
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It's not unusual if you take into account block lengths, speed, and frequency of trains. On busy and/or high speed lengths of track, you can break the blocks into smaller sections and increase the number of signal indications, such as this five lens arrangement. As for missed signals the ATS system will take care of that by applying the brakes.

Another thing to consider is that during low visibility conditions, the train (either the driver and/or the guard) will likely be in radio communication with preceding and following trains, should slowdowns occur. Also, all drivers are required to know the working timetable of the line they are on, so they are aware of the other trains on the line and their plotted positions, and will take that into account in their driving. Likewise with signals, they will be familiar enough with the line that they would know where the signals are located physically and spatially even under low-vis conditions- this is called route familiarization and is a traditional railway practice from steam days, when visibility was often haphazard even in the best of conditions.

Last edited by k.k.jetcar; October 30th, 2012 at 09:01 AM.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 09:40 AM   #1152
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I'm trying to understand the Japanese safety filosophy here:
Is a signal protecting a slow speed switch sufficiently far in front of it so that ATS can reduce the train speed enough for the train not to derail if it was to fast?

Does ATS only check speed at the transponder (like German PZB) or does the train continuously protect the speed against the speed provided by the last transponder it passed (kind of like Dutch ATB-NG)?
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Old November 1st, 2012, 08:52 PM   #1153
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Japan looks to establish new Japan-based railway standards with ISO
http://www.nikkei.com/article/DGXNAS...01C12A1EB1000/

Quote:
 経済産業省と国土交通省は鉄道分野で日本主導の国際規格づくりに乗り出す。国際標準化機構(ISO)に新設した鉄道に関する専門委員会の議長に日本人を送り込み、車両の設計や騒音対策などで日本の事情に沿った提案につなげる。新興国を中心に鉄道需要は堅調な伸びが見込まれ、日本企業の商機が増える規格づくりをめざす。

 10月30~31日に鉄道の専門家会合がドイツ・ベルリンで開催され、鉄道の専門委員会がISO内に正式に発足。この議長に鉄道総合技術研究所の西江勇二氏が就くことが決まった。

 専門委はフランスやドイツ、中国など16カ国が参加するほか、米国など9カ国がオブザーバーになっている。鉄道分野での国際標準化は遅れており、今後、定期的に会合を開き、国を超えて輸出する鉄道のシステムに必要な基準を決める。

 鉄道は航空機やバスと比べて二酸化炭素(CO2)排出量が少なく、エネルギー効率の高い輸送機関。日本の輸出用鉄道車両・同部品の生産額は毎年、1000億円前後で推移している。

 人口が増える新興国では都市をつなぐ高速鉄道だけでなく、地下鉄などの都市鉄道の需要が高まっている。今後は新興国で独仏や韓国などとの受注競争が激しくなるのは確実。経産・国交両省は国際規格づくりをテコに鉄道車両・部品の輸出に弾みをつけたい考えだ。

鉄道システム全体のうち、すでに信号システムだけは先行して国際規格が決まっている。独立行政法人の「交通安全環境研究所」で安全性が認証されれば、海外の認証機関を使わずに輸出しやすくなる。コスト削減や技術の海外流出の防止につながるという。
The full article that ukiyo posted.
Overall, good news… This is being spurred by the selection of Nishie Yūji of the RTRI as the chairperson of ISO Technical Committee 269 (Railway Applications).
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Old November 5th, 2012, 08:28 PM   #1154
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JICA holds railway management workshop with Ghana Railways
http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePag....php?ID=255380

Quote:
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in collaboration with Ghana Railways Development Authority (GRDA) has organised a workshop on the Study for Safety Operation and Management of Railway System in the country.

The workshop was held at the JICA Ghana Office in Accra and was attended by officials of Ministry of Finance & Economic Planning, Ministry of Transportation, The Ghana Railways Company Limited (GRCL), and various stakeholders from private companies.

Representatives of RITES Limited, an Indian national engineering consultancy company specializing in railway systems, were also invited as special guests to share their expertise in railway development.

The objective of the workshop was to discuss the current situation and issues facing the Western Line (Takoradi-Tarkwa-Dunkwa-Awaso) and to come up with realistic goals for improvement. There were presentations on Japanese and Indian railway systems for safety operation, and recommendations on how to deliver appropriate maintenance for the railway system in order to reduce cases of accident and delay.

The importance of maintenance for safety was emphasised and the need to secure sufficient budget for maintenance was made clear.

The Ministries, GRDA and GRCL agreed to cooperate and work toward creating a new maintenance budget, which will be based on the Action Plan due to be proposed by GRCL soon.

The 22-month Study for Safety Operation and Management of Railway System in the Republic of Ghana will be concluded in November 2013, with a final report reflecting the current situation, improvement goals for effective and efficient maintenance of the railway system in Ghana, while ensuring its modernization and expansion.
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Old November 6th, 2012, 08:01 AM   #1155
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Good moves. Before you start running the shiny trains, you need the safety systems and the maintenance regime in place to make sure the trains run reliably and safely. This also ties in to efforts by Japanese firms to promote systems rather than individual products.
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Old November 6th, 2012, 08:05 PM   #1156
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JR East will introduce new battery-powered trainsets onto the Karasuyama Line in spring 2014
http://mainichi.jp/select/news/20121...40103000c.html

Quote:
 蓄電池駆動電車の実用化に取り組んできたJR東日本は6日、14年春から栃木県の烏山(からすやま)線宝積寺(ほうしゃくじ)−烏山間と東北線宇都宮−宝積寺間の計34.1キロで営業運転を開始すると発表した。現行の車両と比べ二酸化炭素(CO2)を60%削減し、騒音も出ないことから環境に優しい電車として注目されてきた。

 最高速度は100キロで定員は131〜134人。電化されている東北線区間11.7キロは通常の電車と同じように架線からの電力で走行し、非電化の烏山線区間22.4キロは車両の下に搭載したリチウムイオン蓄電池に蓄えた電力で走る。終点の烏山駅に充電設備を整備する。

当初は1編成2両で運行を開始し、最終的に4編成を投入する。【斎藤正利】
Official JR East press release:
http://www.jreast.co.jp/press/2012/20121104.pdf

The new EV-E310 series trains will cut carbon dioxide emissions by 60% compared to the existing Kiha 200 stock on the line, and will do a better job of taking advantage of the already-electrified segment of the Tōhoku Main Line between Utsunomiya and Hōshakuji. Top speed will be 100 km/h and weight is 40 t, same as the existing stock, but the EV-E310 sets will also feature other general improvements over the Kiha 200s, including three doors per side (instead of two), more passenger capacity (134 total, 51 seated vs. 117 total, 46 seated). Base formation is two cars (Mc + Mc’).

Render:

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Last edited by quashlo; November 7th, 2012 at 06:13 AM.
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Old November 19th, 2012, 05:30 AM   #1157
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JICA offers ₨ 200 billion loan for Delhi–Mumbai freight line
http://news.nna.jp/free/news/20121119inr002A.html

Quote:
国際協力機構(JICA)は、デリーと西部マハラシュトラ州ムンバイを結ぶ高速貨物専用鉄道(DFC)の建設事業で、約2,000億ルピー(約2,970億円)相当の円借款貸付契約を、本年度内に鉄道省と締結する。DFCは両国が共同で開発するデリー・ムンバイ産業大動脈(DMIC)構想の中心となる事業。

同事業で建設する約1,500キロメートルのうち、第2期となる約550キロ分の敷設に対して供与する。対象区間は▽西部グジャラート州バドダラ~西部マハラシュトラ州のJNPT(ジャワハルラル・ネルー・ポート・トラスト)港▽北部ハリヤナ州レワリ~北部ウッタルプラデシュ州ダドリ――の2区間。

JICAの担当者によると、15日から予定されていたシン首相の訪日時に決める予定だったが、首相の訪日延期によって正式表明が遅れている。

途上国への政府開発援助(ODA)に日本企業の技術を活用する本邦技術活用条件(STEP)をインドに適用する初めての事業として、JICAが2009年に第1期の円借款を決めている。

北部の内陸部と西部の港を結ぶことで、製品の輸送コストを削減する。現在レワリ~バドダラを結ぶ第1期の入札を実施しているほか、2期までの土地収用を進めている。運行開始は2018年の予定。JICAは10年に第2期のエンジニアリングに16億1,600万円の融資契約を締結していた。

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Old November 19th, 2012, 07:57 PM   #1158
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Construction begins on temporary conversion of Ōfunato Line to BRT
http://www.nikkei.com/article/DGXNAS...11C12A1L01000/

Quote:
 東日本旅客鉄道(JR東日本)は19日、東日本大震災で不通となっている大船渡線気仙沼―盛間(43.7キロ)について、バス高速輸送システム(BRT)による仮復旧のための専用道工事に着手した=写真。バスが通行できるよう一部区間のレールや枕木を撤去して舗装する。同社は来春からバスでの運行を始めることを目指している。

 工事は岩手県大船渡市内の大船渡―盛間のうち、大船渡駅と田茂山踏切間1.9キロの区間で始めた。レールを約5メートルの長さに切断し、枕木を含め撤去する。その後路盤をならしアスファルトで舗装する。バスの乗降場を整備し、橋や踏切を改修する。同区間は来春の完成を見込んでいる。

 JRは大船渡線不通区間の約6割を専用道にすることを提案。地元からは利便性向上のため一部鉄道とは違うルートを通るよう求めており、協議が進められている。



JR東日本は19日、震災で不通となっている気仙沼線柳津―気仙沼間について、12月22日からBRTで本格運行を始めると発表した。運行開始に合わせて、一部区間で現在の暫定運行より増発する。運賃についてはBRT区間内は基本的に鉄道運賃と同額にする。鉄道に乗り継いで仙台など一部区間で乗降する場合、鉄道運賃から100円を割り引く。
Haven’t really been following this very closely, but there’s been a lot of progress lately, and there’s already a BRT service up and running on the former Kesennuma Line alignment.
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Old November 21st, 2012, 07:46 PM   #1159
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Russian Railways purchases Nippon Steel rail
http://japanese.ruvr.ru/2012_11_21/95409241/

Quote:
「ロシア鉄道」は2012年、ロシアの冶金業界が製品を供給できなかったため、日本製のレールを購入する必要に迫られた。リア・ノーヴォスチ通信が、「ロシア鉄道」のヤクーニン社長の発言を引用して伝えた。

ヤクーニン社長によると、「ロシア鉄道」は2012年、高速および超高速列車用の新基準のレールを発注したが、ロシアの製造業者は、注文をこなすことができなかった、

「ロシア鉄道」の文書では、2008-2011年、ロシアの鉄道に新日本製鐵のレールが敷設されたと述べられている。2012年も日本製のレールが購入された模様。

「ロシア鉄道」は、日本で100メートルのレールを購入した。ロシアでは最近まで100メートルのレールは製造されておらず、ロシアの冶金業界は、25メートルのレールのみを製造していた。
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Old November 21st, 2012, 08:00 PM   #1160
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JR East’s Railway Museum, UK’s National Railway Museum sign sister-museum agreement
http://sankei.jp.msn.com/region/news...3210012-n1.htm

Quote:
 鉄道博物館(さいたま市大宮区)は21日、英国国立鉄道博物館(イギリス・ヨーク)と来月19日から姉妹館提携することを明らかにした。

 英国国立鉄道博物館は、鉄道発祥の地として知られるイギリスの鉄道博物館として、世界最大級の収蔵品をそろえる。大ホールでは蒸気機関車や日本の「0系」新幹線など歴史的名車が集結。「走る宮殿」と呼ばれる「ロイヤルトレイン」も展示されている。

 日本は140年前の鉄道開業時、イギリスから技術を輸入していた。担当者は「歴史的に関係の深いイギリスと協力して、来館者に有意義な内容を提供できる」と話した。
Good to see museums from two countries with some of the richest railway histories joining hands. I wouldn’t mind seeing some British stock at the JR East museum…
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