Classic Streamliners - TRAINCYCLOPEDIA
Amtrak California Capitol Corridor train no. 534 led by an EMD F59PHI at Pinole, CA. This is a mixed consist with both "California Cars" (the first two) and older Superliner cars (the rear two). By Jerry Huddleston - Flickr: Capitol Corridor, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=20546301
EMD F59PHI Diesel Electric Passenger Locomotive
The EMD F59PH series of locomotives comprises two variants of locomotives built by EMD, the original F59PH and the newer F59PHI. These modern Diesel-electric locomotives are popular among North American commuter rail services.
The EMD F59PHI is a common diesel-electric locomotive on passenger trains in North America, built originally by General Motors Electro-Motive Division (EMD), now built by the successor company, Electro-Motive Diesel, which is owned by Progress Rail Services, itself a division of Caterpillar.
First built in 1994, the locomotive is a 3,200 hp (2.4 MW) B-B diesel-electric locomotive intended for service on North American mainlines. This locomotive is equipped with a turbocharged EMD 12-710G3C-EC, a 12-cylinder, 2 stroke diesel engine (prime mover). The main (traction) alternator converts mechanical energy from the prime mover into electrical energy that is distributed through a high voltage cabinet to direct current traction motors. Each of the four traction motors is directly geared to a pair of driving wheels. The gear ratio of the traction motors (model D87BTR) to wheel axle determines the maximum operating speed of the locomotive; a standard F59PHI has a gear ratio of 56:21 which provides a top speed of 110 miles per hour (180 km/h).
The F59PHI has a fully enclosed monococque carbody which provides protected walkways for easy access to the engine room and trailing units. This arrangement allows routine maintenance while the locomotive is in service. The noteworthy aspect of this locomotive's exterior is the use of composites to present a streamlined appearance.
To supply electrical power for passenger service, the F59PHI is equipped with a secondary electrical generator referred to as the Head End Power (HEP) unit. The head-end generator generates AC power at 480 V, 60 Hz AC, and can be rated between 500 and 750 kW (670 and 1,010 hp) to provide power to the passenger carriages for lighting, electric heating, and air conditioning. The head-end generator is powered by a second diesel engine dedicated to it. With this arrangement, the prime mover is not burdened by head-end power generation and consequently is used solely for supplying tractive effort.
When it debuted for Caltrans in late 1994, the F59PHI was the first locomotive in the United States which met California's stringent emission standards.
Examples of the F59PHI are currently operated by these companies:
Amtrak (Amtrak Cascades, all Amtrak California routes and Piedmont)
North County Transit District (Coaster)
Sound Transit (Sounder Commuter Rail)
Trinity Railway Express
West Coast Express
Accidents and incidents
On February 24, 2015, Metrolink locomotive No. 870 was pushing (the locomotive was located at the rear) a passenger train that struck a vehicle obstructing the line at Oxnard, California and was derailed. Sadly, one person was killed and 29 were injured.
EMD F59PHI Overview
Type and origin
Power type: Diesel-electric
Builder: GM Electro-Motive Division (EMD), General Motors Diesel (GMD)
Build date September: 1994 to 2001
AAR wheel arrangement: B-B
Gauge: 4 ft 8 1⁄2 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Length: 58 ft 7 in (17.86 m)
Prime mover: EMD 12-710G3C-EC
Engine type: V12 diesel
Maximum speed: 110 mph (177 km/h)
Power output: 3,200 hp (2.4 MW)
Tractive Effort Starting: 290 kN (65,195 lbf),
Tractive Effort Continuous: 170 kN (38,218 lbf) @ 16 mph (25.7 km/h)
Locale: North America
SDRX 908, a Sound Transit EMD F59PHI at Milepost 18 on the BNSF Scenic Subdivision in Edmonds, WA. Photo by Stephen De Vight.
By Rebelcommander at English Wikipedia, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10083707
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Text: wikipedia.org. Images: Public Domain; http://www.commons.wikimedia.org (unless otherwise specified) and 17 U.S. Code § 107 fair use. References: Lewis, Robert G. The Handbook of American Railroads. New York: Simmons-Boardman Publishing Corporation, 1951, 2nd Edition 1956. Site Map Contact webmaster HERE.