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TheStreet Open House

Trip Optimizer Is A Cruise Control System For Trains That Automatically Regulates Speed According To A Fuel Optimum Plan. (Photo: GE)

GE Transportation, a unit of GE (NYSE:GE), announces that its Trip Optimizer Energy Management system has recently achieved 100,000,000 miles in revenue service, which has resulted in approximately 25 million gallons of diesel fuel saved.

Trip Optimizer is a cruise control system for trains that automatically regulates speed according to ...

Trip Optimizer is a cruise control system for trains that automatically regulates speed according to a fuel optimum plan. (Photo: GE)

Trip Optimizer is a cruise control system for trains that automatically regulates speed according to a fuel optimum plan. It is able to do this using data from various sources: on-board track topography map, GPS signals, train weight, length and configuration, and complex train handling algorithms. Customers have seen fuel savings of 3 to 17% depending on the type of train service and rail topography.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has approved Trip Optimizer as an energy saving design feature under provisions in 40CFR Part 1033. The fuel savings resulting from its use provide for a corresponding reduction in regulated emissions and greenhouse gases. Each locomotive operating with Trip Optimizer reduces emissions equivalent to 75 automobiles for a year.

The system launched in 2009 and has since been adopted by eight different railroad customers on over 2,500 locomotives in North America, Australia, and Brazil. An additional 2,000 systems are committed and pending installation. Today, the Trip Optimizer system can be installed on any GE locomotive. GE plans to develop versions of the Trip Optimizer system that can be installed on diesel and electric locomotives made by other manufacturers in 2014.

Trip Optimizer customers enjoy benefits of fuel savings and associated emission reductions, consistent train handling while in automatic cruise control mode, and additional productivity benefits of integration with other on-board systems such as:

  • Automatic control of the Locotrol Distributed Power system “Independent Mode” to enable operation of even longer, heavier trains
  • Execution of pacing commands from GEs Movement Planner day-of-operation real-time optimizing planning system
  • Interfacing with on-board Automatic Train Protection (ATP) systems, such as the North American Positive Train Control (PTC) system, to extend the amount of time the train can remain in automatic cruise control mode while regulating speed below the ATP braking curve.

Rob McKeel, General Manager of GE Transportation Intelligent Transportation Solutions, said: “We are proud of this milestone that we have reached with our customers who have realized the benefits from the use of the Trip Optimizer system. Trip Optimizer is a great example of how GE harnesses Big Data and the Industrial Internet to provide fuel savings, reduction in emissions while providing an additional layer of safe locomotive operation to our customers.”

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