INGOLSTADT: Audi uses a plug-in hybrid locomotive with 1,000hp of combined output for its plant in Ingolstadt, Germany, as a way to go greener.
The locomotive, manufactured by Alstom, will replace the rest of the plant’s locomotives from now on, which means that the German brand’s components and finished products will reach its respective loading stations with a reduced contribution to global warming.
The plant employs 17 Audi locomotive drivers for its 18km of railway lines and 15 goods trains arrive at its North railway station everyday loaded with pressed parts, engines and transmissions, as well as cars from other Audi sites that are ready for delivery to customers – also via rail.
With wagon being allocated by the driver to the various plant buildings, each locomotive gets to carry up to 75 shunting maneuvers every day and operates for an average of 3,800 hours each year.
However, the new locomotive runs without any emissions inside the plant buildings and can operate for up to two hours at a time in purely electric mode.
The battery is plugged in during breaks and recharges with carbon dioxide (CO2)-free electricity, or is supported while in motion by a diesel engine.
Hybrid locomotives are significantly quieter and their CO2 emissions are reduced by half compared with conventional locomotives at the plant, which means they emit up to 60 tons less of CO2 each year and is a step closer to a CO2-neutral factory.
“Our goal is all-round sustainable logistics and the new railway technology allows more economical, energy-efficient and low-emission rail transport,” said Audi plant railway head Johann Schmid.