Image Credit: Richard Leonard
Clayton Equipment has been awarded the contract to supply two battery-diesel locomotives to Snowdon Mountain Railway. The batteries which will be supported by the diesel generators, which will drive high-torque electric motors.
Snowdon Mountain Railway uses steam and diesel vehicles. These serve the highest mountain in Wales, which is visited by thousands of visitors every week. As per the current emissions regulations, the engines attached to the diesel generators will be Stage 5 compliant, meaning they will be some of the cleanest units in the country when they come into service. Currently most units in server are aligned to the older Stage 3B emissions standards.
While Stage 5 engines output significantly reduced tailpipe emissions in terms of particulates and nitrogen oxides, they are less fuel efficient than the fuel optimised models. The new locomotive will use regenerative breaking on the way down to recharge the batteries, meaning that the generators will not need to run as much and should save a significant amount fuel compared to the current diesel locomotives, despite carrying more passengers. Up to 12 additional people can be carried on each trip, meaning more savings per passenger and also higher revenue for the railway.