mtu presents new Euro 3 PowerPack for railcars

Posted on September 24, 2002

At the Berlin rail fair InnoTrans 2002, MTU Friedrichshafen is presenting its new Euro 3 PowerPack, a compact drive unit for railcars.
  • World's lowest-pollution drive unit for railcars
  • Increase in power output to 350 kW
  • Modular construction permits integration into popular types of vehicle

Berlin - At the Berlin rail fair InnoTrans 2002, MTU Friedrichshafen is presenting its new Euro 3 PowerPack, a compact drive unit for railcars. From 2004 onwards, it will replace the successful 6R 183 Powerpack, which is presently on the market. The new model sets standards in terms of environmental compatibility, engine technology and system engineering. The new 6H-1800 engine, part of the Euro 3 PowerPack, delivers up to 350 kW and offers additional reserves of power in comparison with the existing model. At the same time, the new mtu engine has even lower exhaust emissions values and thus complies with the Euro 3 standards. This makes the Euro III PowerPack the world's lowest-pollution drive unit for railcars.

Like the current model, the new unit offers a complete system solution for the underfloor powering of railcars. The unit consists of engine, transmission / generator, hydraulics, cooling system, oil and air filter system, exhaust system, compressors and many other peripheral components required for powering the railcar and for supplying the onboard electrical power. All the PowerPack components are fully connected up and wired and mounted in a rugged base frame which can easily be installed in the railcar and quickly be replaced for maintenance work. This minimizes the complexity of production and assembly for the vehicle manufacturer. As before, mtu is responsible for the entire drive system, including the auxiliaries, exhaust-gas optimization, noise attenuation, servicing and analysis of the operating costs, which are of crucial importance for potential purchasers in times of heightened competition. In comparison with the current model, it has also been possible to reduce the weight of the unit while retaining the same functionality.

In developing the engine, mtu has to a large extent taken into consideration the requirements of the market as well as the operating experiences gained over the last five years with the predecessor model. In order to meet the requirements of the market, mtu designed the engine in the form of a compact horizontal 6-cylinder unit with a displacement of 12.8 liters. The engine embodies four-valve technology and has a high-pressure injection system, the pumps of which are equipped with solenoid valves. The equipment specification is rounded off by a two-cylinder brake-air compressor and an oil pan with a capacity of over 40 liters.

Increase in power output to 350 kW

Thanks to a smooth interplay between the injection pumps and the electronic engine management system, the engine achieves excellent values with regard to power output, fuel consumption and reduced emissions. Thus, with its 350 kW, the Euro 3 PowerPack provides an 11 percent increase in power output in comparison with the current model, which is equipped with a 315 kW 6R 183 engine. This additional reserve of power makes it possible for the vehicles to be brought faster up to their service speed, thereby improving the handling of high passenger numbers in built-up centers. The rugged engine construction, designed for many years of service, as well as the low consumption costs help to ensure that operators are able to further optimize their overall costs.

Even before the new Euro 3 PowerPack became available, mtu received its first orders for the 6H 1800. The engines are installed in the previously available PowerPack. The great interest in the engine is demonstrated in particular by the fact that some customers wish to use the new engine as a replacement for the existing 6R 183 in their PowerPacks, the power output of 315 kW being retained owing to the power-handling limits of the transmission. The first pilot-production engines will be available in the second half of 2003, the first production engines being delivered at the start of 2004. Conversely, the new Euro 3 PowerPack, presented by mtu at InnoTrans, permits power outputs of up to 350 kW.

Modular construction permits integration into popular types of vehicle

Thanks to its modular construction principle, the new model can be tailored to virtually all popular types of vehicle, the specific requirements of various types of vehicle also being met without problem. Thus, different versions of components and auxiliaries can be installed in the rugged base frame along the lines of the building-block principle. These include, for example, components of the onboard power supply, air conditioning, oil and air filter system. A decisive factor with regard to easy integration into the vehicle is the fact that all the mechanical and electronic interfaces of the overall system are retained. This high degree of flexibility applies also with regard to the various types of drive used in railcars. The PowerPack can be supplied, as required, with either a diesel-mechanical, diesel-hydraulic or diesel-electric drive system.

With the 6R-183 and the 12V-183 PowerPack, MTU Friedrichshafen was in 1997 the first engine manufacturer to market compact drive units for underfloor installation in railcars. Since then, the concept of a complete system solution has proved its worth many times over. Today, the PowerPack enjoys an excellent reputation among vehicle manufacturers and operators alike. To date, five vehicle manufacturers have ordered a total of just under 2000 PowerPacks. The units are used by numerous operators, principally in western and eastern Europe. There are signs of a further expansion of market activities as a result of new orders from operators in North America as well as projects in the Pacific.