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BNSF to test Progress Rail battery-electric locomotives in Southern California

By | September 23, 2022

Grants to support demonstration of up to four SD70J units

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Progress Rail logoBERLIN — Progress Rail will provide up to four EMD Joule battery-electric locomotives to BNSF for testing in Southern California, the company has announced today at InnoTrans.

The trial, to be supported in part by government grants, will also see Progress provide two charging stations for the locomotives. The SD70J units will have 8 Megawatt-hours of storage capacity, which Progress says will make them the largest battery-electric locomtives in North America. They will operate in yards and on routes in Southern California.

“Progress Rail is excited to provide this groundbreaking zero exhaust emission technology to BNSF,” Progres Rail CEO Marty Haycraft said in a press relesae “We are committed to helping our customers meet their emissions reduction goals.”

The locomotives are scheduled for delivery in 2024.

John Lovenburg, BNSF vice president of environment and sustainability, called the Joule locomotive “an exciting advancement in battery-electric locomotive technology,” and said the project “is well aligned with BNSF’s commitment to innovation and leadership in sustainable freight,” We are focused on continuing to reduce the environmental impact in the communities where we operate and proud to do our part to assess the commercial and operational viability of emerging technologies that reduce emissions.”

9 thoughts on “BNSF to test Progress Rail battery-electric locomotives in Southern California

  1. but what about diesel locomotives along with the ones that are low emission running on bio fuels that won’t cause polluting

  2. Does UP have an emissions free source of power to charge the batteries? California’s electrical grid is already under pressure which will increase as they add more electric vehicles and shut down emission producing power plants.

  3. Will California ask them to not charge these like they did e-car owners when
    power demand is high ? People this stuff still is not ready or practical for every day
    real world use.

  4. They don’t have enough crews to run the trains but have room on the payroll for a “vice president of environment and sustainability”. Large corporations are becoming as institutionally stupid as the government and academia.

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