x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Etihad Rail trains to be built for a special landscape

Specially designed train engines will have special filters for the sand.

Locomotives are being produced by the US firm Electro-Motive Diesel. Courtesy Etihad Rail
Locomotives are being produced by the US firm Electro-Motive Diesel. Courtesy Etihad Rail

ABU DHABI // The new SD70-ACS locomotives of Etihad Rail will be built to handle the sand.

The 4,500-horsepower locomotives have special features for desert terrain that include moveable sand ploughs, sealed car bodies and a filtration system to remove wayward particles.

They will be similar to those of the Saudi Railway Company in shape while the colours and the branding of the Etihad Rail locomotives have yet to be decided.

The locomotives are 22.6 metres long, nearly five metres high and weigh 187 tonnes. They have a fuel capacity of 16,655 litres and meet the latest US and European diesel emission rules. They will be designed by the Electro-Motive Division of General Motors.

The first SD70-ACS models were ordered in April 2009, when the Saudi Railway Company asked for 25 units. Mauritania's Société Nationale Industrielle et Minière also requested six of the locomotives in October 2010.

A complete Etihad Rail train would have three locomotives and up to 110 cars to carry up to 22,000 tonnes of granulated sulphur daily between Habshan and Ruwais, the first section of the rail. The company ordered seven of the locomotives in July for delivery by next year.