GE Transportation today announced the success of a technology that changes the rail industry by calculating the optimal locomotive speed for minimal fuel consumption, resulting in 3.3 million gallons of fuel savings on the first five million miles of track run using the technology. It is the latest example of how GE’s $4 billion-a-year software and solutions services are helping customers improve productivity and efficiency worldwide.
GE’s Trip Optimizer, an ecomagination product, is breakthrough software which functions much like a car’s cruise control. Trip Optimizer calculates the optimal speed profile for a trip based on a specific train’s makeup and route and then automatically controls the throttle to maintain that planned speed and save fuel. Trip Optimizer operates in two ways: automatic control or advisement mode. Automatic control maintains the planned speed automatically while advisement mode informs the operator which throttle and dynamic braking levels to use to optimize fuel efficiency and speed.
Four major North American Class 1 railroads have outfitted their locomotives with GE Transportation’s Trip Optimizer and have accumulated more than five million service miles run in advisement and automatic control. Trip Optimizer generated a fuel savings of approximately 7% and a corresponding reduction of more than 37,000 tons of CO2, or the same impact as taking more than 7,000 passenger cars off of the road or planting more than 10,000 acres of forest.
Pierre Comte, president GE Transportation Intelligent Control Systems said, “After years of research and a considerable investment, we’re proud to reach this milestone. Trip Optimizer generates fuel savings ranging from 3% to 15% per locomotive depending on territory as measured by North American train operators. It is a significant element in the future of fuel conservation with the added benefit of reducing emissions for railroads around the world.”
Trip Optimizer is the third in a series of transportation software advances from GE. It joins GE’s LOCOTROL Distributed Power product that increases hauling capacity and reduces operating costs and GE’s RailEdge Movement Planner that enables railroads to move more freight faster on their existing networks.
To learn more about Trip Optimizer click here.