Mandrake wrote: ↑
06 Feb 2017, 18:03
As someone who gets a train into Glasgow Central station every day, I'm amazed at the amount of pollution that the Diesel-Electric trains are still allowed to belch out!
It really is horrible. Fortunately the line I am on was electrified about a year ago.
Are there no Euro regulations for smoke from Diesel busses and locomotives like there are for cars ??!
Yes, emissions regulations apply in the same way (new build, not backward applicable) and IIRC, use the same 'Euro' class for emissions, albeit the implementation timescales have differed.
Different timescales is for a number of good reasons, e.g. design timescales for rail vehicles are much longer, they have to comply with a whole host of extra safety regulations and getting products and design changes through those as well isn't an overnight activity, the volumes are significantly lower so the supply chain is not going to be as responsive and things tend to be made in batches and stockpiled for future use rather than being able to switch/change as needed etc.
Rail vehicles and the components in them have a much, much harder life than automotive and therefore they need to have a longer life-cycle and different design.
Automotive engines have been tried in rail vehicles in the past, with appalling results.
e.g. a diesel railcar might typically cover 80-100,000 miles a year and have a 35 year life (loco's can be far higher on both counts). The engine duty cycle is generally idle for a reasonable period of time, then straight to flat out load for long periods of time, not held at part throttle for the majority of its operation. Space to mount equipment is at a premium and cooling isn't necessarily efficient (you can't front mount a radiator, for a start!) and access to maintain and service isn't easy either. This drives the need for a different product.
Typical overhaul cycles for a railcar engine might be 250,000 miles for a top end overhaul, 500,000 miles for full overhaul - so you can see that over the life of a rail vehicle, the engine will actually be used 7 times over (which in itself is far more efficient/environmentally friendly than an automotive application) and in fact, the engine will probably be used even longer than that, as a common engine gets shared round the whole national pool (that's how it worked in BR days, less so these days tending only to be shared across the same leasing company at best).
Particularly with locomotives, the 'bespoke' nature of the engines and the sheer value of them, can drive faults that would write an engine off in automotive world to still be repaired (massive gaping holes in the side of blocks where they've put a leg out of bed etc.). I expect in that particular regard, it's similar to other industries such as shipping (although that has nothing like the same level of safety regulation that causes extra constraints I mentioned earlier).
FWIW, the newest diesel trains being procured for Greater Anglia are (IIRC) Euro IIIb compliant, which means they have all sorts of gubbins you'd find on more modern road vehicles, including using AdBlue...