GE Evolution Series
The Evolution Series is a line of diesel locomotives built by GE Transportation Systems, initially designed to meet the U.S. EPA's Tier 2 locomotive emissions standards that took effect in 2005. The first pre-production units were built in 2004. Evolution Series locomotives are equipped with either AC or DC traction motors, depending on the customer's preference. All are powered by the GE GEVO engine.
|GE Evolution Series|
Three of Union Pacific Railroad's Evolution Series locomotives leaving Hutchinson, Kansas with AC45CCTE #5304 in the lead.
The Evolution Series was named as one of the "10 Locomotives That Changed Railroading" in the January 2009 issue of Trains Magazine. It was the only locomotive introduced after 1972 to be included in that list.
The Evolution Series, mainly the ES44DC, ES44AC, and ET44AC, are some of the best-selling and most successful freight locomotives in United States history.
Currently, six different Evolution Series models have been produced for the North American market. They are all six axle locomotives and have the wheel arrangement C-C (AAR classification) or Co'Co' (UIC classification), except for the ES44C4 which has an A1A-A1A wheel arrangement and the metric-gauge version developed for the Brazilian network ES43BBi which is B-B-B-B. All North American Evolution Series locomotives are equipped from the factory with a Nathan-Airchime K5HL-R2 "Evolution" airhorn, and most later models are equipped with a Graham-White 373 electronic bell.
The ES40DC (Evolution Series, 4000 HP, DC traction) replaced the Dash 9-40CW model in the General Electric catalogue and, like the former model, was delivered exclusively to Norfolk Southern Railway. ES44DCs owned by CSX Transportation were also given this designation in 2009 after being de-rated to 4,000 hp (3,000 kW).
The ES44DC (Evolution Series, 4400 HP, DC traction) replaced the Dash 9-44CW model in the General Electric catalogue. Primary users are BNSF Railway, CSX Transportation, and Canadian National Railway. Pilbara Iron in Australia ordered a lengthened, international version designated ES44DCi. The extra length is used for a larger radiator to increase cooling capacity in the Australian outback.
The ES44AC (Evolution Series, 4400 HP, AC traction) replaced the AC4400CW model in the General Electric catalogue. These locomotives have been ordered by every Class I railroad in North America: Union Pacific Railroad (who refers to these locomotives as the C45ACCTE), BNSF Railway, CSX Transportation, Norfolk Southern Railway, Kansas City Southern Railway, Kansas City Southern de Mexico, Ferromex, Canadian Pacific Railway, and Canadian National Railway.
The Class II Iowa Interstate Railroad ordered 14 ES44ACs (IAIS 500-513) in 2008 to handle an expected traffic growth resulting from new ethanol plants coming on line. An additional 3 locomotives (IAIS 514-516) were delivered in 2016 and three more (IAIS 517-519) are scheduled for delivery in 2019. As a result of the delivery of the final six locomotives, the Iowa Interstate will retire its SD-38 fleet. The IAIS 513 is painted in a Rock Island, Route of the Rockets heritage paint scheme, and the IAIS 516 is painted in a Rock Island inspired scheme celebrating the 30th anniversary of the start-up of the railroad.
CSX began receiving an order of 200 ES44ACs (referred to by CSX as the ES44AH) in December 2007. The "H" in ES44AH stands for "heavy", which is in reference to a combination of subsystems that produce high levels of tractive effort at low speeds. In order to be classified as an "AH" by CSX, a locomotive has to have not only an increased nominal weight (currently to 432,000 pounds or 196 tonnes), but also (1) steerable trucks, (2) TM3 adhesion control software, (3) software that extends to 33,000 pounds-force (150 kN) from 30,000 pounds-force (130 kN) the maximum amount of tractive effort that each traction motor is permitted to produce, and (4) GE's Rail Cleaner, which directs high-pressure air onto the rails in front of the sand nozzles forward of axle number one.
In September 2008, Norfolk Southern purchased 24 ES44ACs numbered 8000-8023, and began receiving the first of these units in October 2008. Ordered to be used on long haul coal trains, they were the first new AC locomotives ever purchased by NS. An additional 65 units were ordered in 2011, numbered 8025-8090. 24 more units, numbered 8091-8115, were ordered at the beginning of 2012. 10 of these units: 8025, 8098-8105 & 8114 were painted in predecessor company "heritage" paint schemes for NS's 30th anniversary. All NS ES44ACs are built to CSX specifications, with the exception of the Hi-Ad trucks & headlight placement.
Canadian National's first order of ES44ACs was in January 2012, and as of 2018 they roster about 236 units, numbered in the 2800-2999 and 3800-3835 series. With the introduction of the United States Environmental Protection Agency's Tier 4 locomotive emission regulations, CN's newest Tier 3 GE ES44AC's are restricted to Canadian use only.
Citirail/CREX acquired 100 ES44ACs for lease service. They are painted silver with blue & yellow nose striping and blue numbers. Most, if not all of these units,[weasel words] are leased to BNSF Railway.
In 2013, General Electric built one ES44AC, GECX 3000, as a test bed for their NextFuel natural gas power kit. The engine runs on liquefied natural gas from a fuel tender. The unit is currently part of BNSF's GE LNG test set, partnered with BNSF ES44AC no. 5815.
The ES44C4 (Evolution Series, 4400 HP, AC traction, 4 powered axles) was introduced in 2009. While similar to the ES44AC, the ES44C4 has two traction motors per truck, instead of the conventional three such as on the ES44AC. No ES44C4s with DC traction were built. The center axle of each truck is unpowered, giving an A1A-A1A wheel arrangement. BNSF Railway is the launch customer for this model, ordering an initial batch of 25 units numbered 6600-6624. As of 2015, BNSF Railway currently rosters over 900 ES44C4 units. The 4200's and units 7921-7999 are certified as Tier 4 Credit units, while the others are Tier 2 or Tier 3. On January 30, 2014 Florida East Coast Railway announced that they would buy 24 ES44C4s, to be numbered 800-823, for heavy haul service and intermodal traffic. All were delivered by the end of 2014, in order to beat the EPA's deadline on exhaust-emissions standards for new-built Tier 3 locomotives.
A unique feature of these units is that there is a variable traction control system in their computer systems. One of the differences between an ES44AC and an ES44C4 are the air cylinders and linkages on the truck sideframes of the ES44C4; these are part of the traction control system. Every time a variation in grade, traction, or wheel slip occurs, the computer will adjust the pressure in these cylinders to maintain sufficient adhesion, by varying the weight on the drive axles.
The ES44ACi/DCi is essentially an ES44AC/DC in a GE AC6000CW's body, with the radiator at the end protruding out over the rear deck in the same way the AC6000CW does. The locomotive's large radiator allows it to handle the Australian outback's extreme temperatures.
Roy Hill has ordered 21 ES44ACi locomotives, and is currently in possession of all 21 locomotives (numbered 1001 "Ginny"-1021). Rio Tinto ordered 100 ES44DCi locomotives and has all 100 (numbered 8100-8199) and 21 ES44ACi locomotives (numbered 9100-9120) and more are on order.
Ferromex also acquired 50 ES44ACi. As the construction of these locomotives was subsequent to the new environmental laws of the USA, GE cataloged them only as ES44ACi, although in the external technical specifications of the locomotives say ES44AC). These locomotives can no longer reenter the US operating.
The ET44AC (Evolution Series Tier 4, 4400 HP, AC traction) replaces the ES44AC model. These locomotives have been ordered by most of the Class I railroads in North America, including Union Pacific, CSX Transportation, Norfolk Southern and Canadian National Railway. BNSF Railway will be receiving similar ET44C4 locomotives, which have no traction motor on the middle axle of each truck.
In the summer of 2012, GE unveiled its first Tier 4 emissions-compliant locomotive, now officially named the ET44AC. The prototype demonstrators, as well as current production units, are visually quite different from previous models. First, the "ET" is 74 feet 6 inches (22.71 m) long - an increase of 16 inches (0.41 m) from the 73-foot-2-inch (22.30 m) length of all previous GE 6-axle models beginning with the "DASH 9" series in 1993. While the front third of the locomotive, including the control cab, is basically unchanged, the rear two-thirds is noticeably different. On Tier 4 demonstrator units the entire midsection above the prime mover is raised to accommodate an advanced exhaust treatment system; it is seen as a "hump" that rises above the rest of the locomotive considerably. Production units have this hump only over the exhaust manifold directly ahead of the radiator, rather than encompassing the entire midsection. In addition, the radiator section is much larger than that of earlier "ES" units, featuring a two-fan split-cooling system located inside a very large, angular compartment. Grilles under the radiator section have been smoothed out, and there are two extra air intakes on the rear of the locomotive hood. ET44ACs are all equipped with Graham-White electronic bells (E-bells). Tier 4 demonstrator units are equipped with two airhorns: a three-chime horn – facing forward – located behind the cab and a rear-facing two-chime horn protruding from the back of the radiator. Production units feature the now-standard Nathan-Airchime model K5HL-R2 "Evolution" airhorn mounted on the hood slightly forward of the placement location used on previous models.
A DC variant of the ET44AC has not been cataloged by General Electric.
The TE33A is a 1520 mm gauge locomotive in the GE Evolution Series.
The Evolution Series locomotives are visually similar to the AC4400CW, although small differences are evident. The most noticeable difference is the radiator section at the rear of the locomotive is larger to accommodate the GEVO's Air to air intercoolers. As with the AC6000CW, the radiators project beyond the end of the hood, though not to the same extent. The Evolution Series radiator does not protrude completely over the rear deck, but rather sits nearly flush with the rear of the engine hood. The ES44ACi and ES44DCi, however, do have radiators that extend in the same way as the AC6000CW, protruding out over the rear deck. Also, unlike previous GE locomotives, the grills under the radiator are at two different angles. The increase in radiator size is due to the necessity for greater cooling capacity in the locomotive in order to reduce emissions. The other major difference between the Evolution Series and earlier models are the vents below the radiators, which are larger than those on previous GE locomotives. In addition, most, if not all, Evolution Series units have air conditioners mounted below the cab on the conductor's side.
- ArcelorMittal, operated by Cartier Railway:
- 2 ES44AC units, numbered 301 and 302, built in summer 2010
- BNSF Railway:
- 30 pre-production ES44AC units, numbered 5718-5747, were built between October 2003 and April 2004.
- 685 production ES44AC units, numbered 5748–5837 (built 2005) and 5844-6438 (built between 2005 and 2009). BNSF 5958 was wrecked and retired in December 2013.
- 1,257 ES44C4 units, numbered 4200-4299, 5533-5546, 6500-7199 (built 2009 through 2014), 7921-8291 (built 2014-2015) and 8318-8399 (built 2015).
- 275 ET44C4 units (as of September 2018), numbered 3725-3999 (built 2015 onward).
- 721 ES44DC units, numbered 7200-7920 (built 2005 through 2010). Number 7695 wears the "golden" swoosh rather than the black swoosh.
- Canadian National Railway:
- 125 ES44DC units, numbered 2220-2344. All are equipped with microwave ovens.
- 276 ES44AC units, numbered 2800-2999, and 3800-3875. 2800-2975 were built 2012 through 2015. The first 2015 order (2951–2975) was built to Tier 3 standards but after the Tier 4 cutoff date and therefore are restricted to operation in Canada only. More Tier 4-compliant ET44AC's were on order for 2015 delivery, with the first two, CN 3002 and 3004, entering service on August 6, 2015. 8 additional Tier 4 units (2976-2983) were built in 2016- 2017. 2984-2999 and 3800-3805 built in late 2017. 3806-3835 built in 2018 and 3836-3875 built in 2018-2019.
- 121 ET44AC units, numbered 3000-3120.
- Canadian Pacific Railway:
- 291 ES44AC units, numbered 8700–8960 and 9350-9379
- 8700–8759 were built with GE self-steering trucks. Later orders specified the standard Hi-Adhesion trucks due to the higher maintenance costs of the steerable design.
- 8858–8877 were painted to promote the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Effective March 4, 2010, all 20 Olympic units have been earmarked to be sent to Progress Rail in Winnipeg for removal of Olympic logos and repainting of the logo area to the original red and white scheme. As of 2018, 8876 still wears the Olympics paint however all Olympics logos have been removed.
- 8890–8899 are fully equipped with ECP braking technology, which CP had been testing on its coal fleet.
- 8700–8960 and 9350–9379 are equipped with FTO. 8939 wears stickers on the front of either side promoting Lord Strathcona's Horse.
- 291 ES44AC units, numbered 8700–8960 and 9350-9379
- 4 ES44AC units, numbered 10015–10018
- Citicorp Railmark Inc. (Citirail) CREX:
- 15 ES44AC units, numbered 1201–1215, delivered in December 2012.
- 50 ES44AC units, numbered 1301–1350, delivered in late 2013.
- 35 ES44AC units, numbered 1401–1435, delivered during summer 2014.
- 25 ES44AC units, numbered 1501-1525, delivered in December 2015, units are T4CU (Tier 4 Credit Units).
- CSX Transportation:
- 100 ES44AC units, numbered 4600–4699.
- 50 ES44AC units, numbered 4800-4849. Delivery started on June 2016. Units numbered 4800-4818 where built at the GE plant in Erie, PA. Units numbered 4819-4849 where built at the GE plant in Fort Worth, Texas.
- 23 ES44AC units, numbered 4700-4722. Painted in Ferromex colors.
- Florida East Coast Railway:
- 24 ES44C4 units, numbered 800-823, built in November–December 2014.
- Iowa Interstate Railroad:
- 12 ES44AC units were delivered from 2008 to 2009, numbered 500–511. These are the first new units purchased by this railroad.
- 2 ES44AC units were delivered in early 2010, numbered 512 and 513. 513 is painted in a Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad heritage scheme in honor of this Iowa Interstate predecessor.
- 3 ES44AC units were delivered in 2015, numbered 514–516. 516 is painted in a Rock Island inspired 30th anniversary paint scheme.
- 12 ES44AC units were delivered from 2008 to 2009, numbered 500–511. These are the first new units purchased by this railroad.
- Kansas City Southern Railway:
- 135 ES44AC units, numbered 4680-4709 and 4765–4869
- 25 ET44AC units, numbered 5000-5024
- Kansas City Southern de México:
- 85 ES44AC units, numbered 4650–4679 and 4710–4764
- 25 ES44AC units, numbered 4870-4894 (Built 2015).
- 25 ES44AC units, numbered 4895-4919, units are equipped with steerable trucks (Built 2019).
- Norfolk Southern Railway:
- 220 ES44DC units, numbered 7500–7719. Units were uprated from 4,000 to 4,400 HP in 2014.
- 166 ES44AC units, numbered 8000–8165.
- 3 ES44AC units, numbered 8166–8168 Tier 4 credit units, built concurrently with ET44AC's 3600-3646.
- 16 ES44AC units, numbered 8169-8184, tier 4 credit units.
- 47 ET44AC units, numbered 3600–3646
- 34 ET44AC units, numbered 3647-3680.
- Sava Transportation (Savatran) SVTX:
- 3 ES44AC units, numbered 1912, 1982, and 1986, delivered February 2012. Units are numbered for the years that Penn State University won national college football championships.
- Union Pacific Railroad:
- Five pre-production ES44AC (AC45CCTE) units, numbered 5695–5699 (renumbered 5348–5352), were built between January and February 2003.
- 938 production ES44AC (AC45CCTE) units, numbered 5248–5347, 5353-5553, 7345-7529, and 7600-8051.
- 216 ES44AH (C45AH) heavy units, numbered 8052-8267. These units are 432,000 lb (196,000 kg) compared to the ES-series standard 416,000 lb (189,000 kg), and are supplied with all required equipment and computer software to be classified as "AH" heavy units. UP's "AH" types are similar to CSXT's, except for their Hi-Ad trucks, and are designated C45AH's by U.P.
- 200 ET44AH (C45AH) units, numbered 2570-2769.
- UP 7605 was delivered in GE Demonstrator colors, but has been repainted into the standard Building America scheme as of 01/05[clarification needed] 2008.
- UP 2010, an ES44AC Boy Scouts of America tribute unit, was unveiled on March 31, 2010, in Houston, Texas to commemorate 100 years of Boy Scouts. The unit was renumbered from 7469.
- In September 2010, UP 7400 was unveiled, featuring a pink ribbon on the side as a tribute to Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
- UP 7964 is the 5,000th Evolution Series locomotive to be built, and it had decals on both sides. As of August 30, 2016, it had the decals removed and was repainted.
In October 2005 China Railway ordered 700 Evolution Series locomotives, ES59ACi, from GE Transportation Systems and Qishuyan Locomotive and Rolling Stock Works for delivery in 2008–2009. Two have been built at Erie, Pennsylvania, the rest will be assembled by Qishuyan at Changzhou.
On September 28, 2006 national railway Kazakhstan Temir Zholy signed an agreement with GE Transportation Systems ordering 310 Evolution Series locomotives designated as the TE33A. The first ten of these were built in GE's Erie, Pennsylvania, plant while the remaining 300 will be assembled at a new plant in Astana, Kazakhstan which was opened by President Nursultan Nazarbayev on 3 July 2009 Delivery is expected between 2009 and 2012. The locomotives are built with dual cabs and are among the first diesel-electric locomotives with AC traction motors to operate in the Commonwealth of Independent States and Ukraine (besides the 2TE25A built by Bryansk Engineering Works, Transmashholding, Russia).
Rio Tinto Group has ordered 100 ES44DCi locomotives for operation on their privately owned rail line, operated by Pilbara Iron. The ES44DCi uses the AC6000CW's longer frame to allow space for a heavy duty cooling system to cope with the hot desert environment that the locomotives operate in. Units 8100-8118 were delivered in a predominantly grey paint scheme, while units 8119-8199 feature additional red lettering and striping.
Rio Tinto Group has ordered 21 ES44ACi of 'EVO' units, an AC version of the ES44DCi. These units are numbered from 9100 onwards and more are on order. They are in the Rio Tinto silver with red stripes and numerals.
Carajás Railroad, a subsidiary of Brazilian mining company Vale, ordered 70 5800 hp ES58ACi locomotives. The units were built at GE's Erie plant and delivered in 2009. The prime mover is a GEVO-16. Gauge is 1,600 mm (5 ft 3 in)
- South Africa
Transnet Engineering in South Africa has a license to manufacture 233 4,200 hp (3,100 kW) 3 ft 6 in (1,067 mm) Cape gauge ES40ACi locomotives for Transnet Freight Rail, with core components including GEVO-12 engines supplied from the United States.
The first six of these Class 44-000 locomotives were built in Erie, Pennsylvania in April and July 2015. In October 2015, the first of the 227 South African-built locomotives was nearing completion at Transnet Engineering's Koedoespoort shops in Pretoria.
In November 2015, it was announced Indian Railways and GE would engage in an 11-year joint venture in which GE would hold a majority stake of 74%, to provide a mix of 1,000 diesel locomotives of 4,500 and 6,000 horsepower each. General Electric has invested ₹2,052 crore (US$305 million) for its construction. In the $2.6 Billion deal, Indian Railways would purchase 100 goods locomotives a year for 10 years beginning in 2017; the locomotives would be modified versions of the GE Evolution series. The diesel locomotive works will be built by 2018; GE will import the first 100 locomotives and manufacture the remaining 900 in India from 2019, also assuming responsibility for their maintenance over a 13-year period.
- ES44DC Datasheet, The Diesel Shop
- ES44AC Datasheet, The Diesel Shop
- ES44C4 Datasheet, The Diesel Shop
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- Solomon 2011, p. 64
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- Diesel Era Magazine, March/April 2012, pg. 8.
- Diesel Era Magazine, July/August 2013, pg. 2
- UP 7605
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- "GE ships first CML diesel locomotive to China". Railway Gazette International. 2008-08-21. Archived from the original on September 13, 2009. Retrieved 2008-08-21.
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- "Photo of the ТЭ33А-0007 in Almaty". Archived from the original on 2012-09-11. Retrieved 2015-08-04.
- "Rail". Rio Tinto Iron Ore. Archived from the original on 1 July 2013. Retrieved 31 March 2010.
- Closeup of the radiator on Rio Tinto 8110
- Rio Tinto 8118 prior to delivery
- Rio Tinto 8120 prior to delivery
- Issue 01.02 Western Australian Rail January 2015
- GE Transportation and Egyptian National Railways Announce the Completion of Commissioning of 80 Evolution Series Locomotives Archived 2013-08-17 at the Wayback Machine (2009-07-13)
- Photos of ES40ACi for Egypt at delivery
- "Transnet: 1,064 locomotives, $5 billion". Railway Age. March 17, 2014. Archived from the original on 2015-06-15.
- Railways Africa, 11 Feb 2015: New Transnet Diesel-Electric Locomotives (Accessed 22 Nov 2015)
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