The GT46C-ACe is a standard gauge diesel locomotive manufactured in Australia by Downer (Now Progress Rail) specifically for the Australia freight market. Used for intermodal freight and bulk freight including coal, these locomotives operate over long distances in some of the harshest high ambient temperature environments in the world.
Routes operated by these locomotives includes the Adelaide-Darwin rail corridor which runs from the bottom to the top of Australia and the Trans-Australian Railway which runs from Port Augusta to Perth across the Nullarbor desert and features the longest stretch of straight track in the world, 487km without a single curve.
The main challenge when approaching the HVAC design for this locomotive was how to ensure reliability of the power conversion electronics under these extremely arduous conditions, especially as the driver’s cab HVAC units are required to operate far from any base or depot for several days without fail.
One of the features pioneered by Noske-Kaeser Rail & Vehicle for this locomotive was the remote location of converter & inverter modules within the vestibule of the cab, protecting them from the extreme temperatures experienced by roof mounted equipment.
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