Japan’s first hybrid locomotive

Japan’s first hybrid locomotive is here.

Japan Freight Railway Co.’s HD-300 engine will be powered by a diesel power generator lithium-ion batteries, and is designed to reduce exhaust emissions by at least 30% to 40% and noise levels by at least 10 dB compared with existing Class DE10 diesel locomotives. Externally, the locomotive is finished in a bright red livery to aid visibility, with yellow and black diagonal warning stripes at the ends.

The prototype locomotive was scheduled to be delivered to Tokyo Freight Terminal on 30 March 2010 for approximately six months of trials before being moved to Matsumoto in Nagano Prefecture later this year to assess performance at higher altitudes. The locomotive will also be tested in Hokkaido to assess performance in cold winter conditions. Construction of full-production locomotives is scheduled from fiscal 2011 onward.

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