Information published on 13 March 2012 in the UIC electronic newsletter "UIC eNews" Nr 282.

Switzerland: SBB Cargo commissions first hybrid locomotive

  • Freight
  • Sustainable development

On 9 March, SBB Cargo put the first of its 30 hybrid locomotives into operation. This will provide a more economical and ecological wagonload service. As the most modern locomotive on the market, it will be deployed on main-line duties and in shunting operations.
The second locomotive will be delivered in May while the remaining 28 vehicles ordered will be supplied at a rate of one every three weeks until the end of 2013.

The new Eem 923 hybrid locomotive is ideally suited to the future needs of Swiss wagonload service customers, as it combines efficiency and sustainability with cost-effectiveness.
Thanks to this new acquisition, SBB Cargo can further reduce the diversity of its vehicles, which makes the operation and maintenance of the entire fleet more cost-effective.

The new hybrid locomotive will also meet SBB Cargo’s high environmental standards. Thanks to its high power rating of 1500 kilowatts, it is suitable for both main-line duties and shunting operations. This gives SBB Cargo greater flexibility in the provision of its services. Locomotive drivers can rapidly switch between an electric drive system and auxiliary diesel power. This saves time and money, as it is no longer necessary to make a time-consuming and costly locomotive change for the final leg on non-electrified sidings. The operating and maintenance costs of the hybrid locomotives are also significantly lower than those of the old shunting fleet, and at the same time SBB Cargo anticipates a considerably higher degree of vehicle availability.

The Eem 923 hybrid locomotives are likely to be powered over 90% by electricity. The auxiliary diesel power will only be used on sidings without overhead power lines. As a result, SBB can achieve an annual reduction in CO2 emissions of more than 4000 tonnes per annum compared with today.

(Source: SBB)