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All across the Great Western territory => Across the West => Topic started by: Bmblbzzz on July 21, 2017, 09:28:30 pm



Title: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on July 21, 2017, 09:28:30 pm
Hydrogen powered fuel cells, perhaps.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on July 21, 2017, 09:34:30 pm
The sad aspect of this decision, and the much more serious decision about Bristol is that if Network Rail had a 25 year commitment to electrify the whole network, then the costs would be manageable and affordable.
 

You may be right, but I think that your statement puts more faith in NR's ability than recent evidence supports. 

Network Rail has a vision and strategy for 25 years, as asked for by the DfT ................. however politicians only have a vision and strategy for 2.5 years that is two and half years after a General Election their only vision and strategy is the next election


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on July 21, 2017, 10:00:16 pm
Hydrogen powered fuel cells, perhaps.

Hydrogen remains a possibility in theory but is unlikely to be viable for reasons given above.
Expensive, bulky, awkward to handle, and somewhat dangerous.

Fuel cells do not affect the hazard from the stored hydrogen or the other issues mentioned.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on July 21, 2017, 10:31:56 pm
Having driven a HFC powered car on a number of occasions both at home and in the USA I find them to be the most usable alternative to the internal combustion engine.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on July 21, 2017, 10:52:45 pm
Hydrogen remains a possibility...

Hydrogen is a certainty, inasmuch as that it definitely exists. I don't think it has much of a future as a vehicle fuel though.

Yes, to be strictly accurate I should have said that hydrogen powered trains remain a possibility.
I agree that it probably has little future as a fuel for rail or indeed other vehicles. Not impossible of course but a bit unlikely.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on July 21, 2017, 11:08:25 pm
Hydrogen powered fuel cells, perhaps.

Hydrogen remains a possibility in theory but is unlikely to be viable for reasons given above.
Expensive, bulky, awkward to handle, and somewhat dangerous.

Fuel cells do not affect the hazard from the stored hydrogen or the other issues mentioned.


No, but in total after taking account of all the above, hydrogen seems an unlikely fuel for rail vehicles.

1) It is expensive, due to the amount of electricity used in production and the cost and complexity of the equipment needed. The hydrogen also needs to be liquefied or compressed, requiring yet more expensive plant that also consumes energy.
2) It is bulky, several times the bulk of diesel fuel for the same energy content. The ultra high pressure tanks, or super insulated tanks are costly items and cant realistically be made in the odd shapes that often make best use of space.
3) It is awkward to handle either as an ultra high pressure gas or as a super cold liquid, not like diesel that simply requires a hose and a pump.
4) It is arguably a greater fire and explosion risk than diesel fuel.
5) fuel cells in the sizes needed to power trains are very bulky and very expensive if compared to a diesel engine, cooling is also more complex.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 21, 2017, 11:25:33 pm
And one of the other campaigners suggested that things/systems that have been around for 100 years need to be replaced with something newer. His suggestion's to scrap all buses and trains, and replace them with things like guided systems - automated or semiautomated, such as you'll see at Heathrow (https://londonist.com/2014/09/a-ride-on-heathrows-self-driving-pods) and in parts of Cambridgeshire (http://www.thebusway.info).  "Nothing that's been around over 100 years should still be in use" was his view;
There's not much in transport that hasn't been around for more than 100 years, except space travel. Even electric cars were around in the late 19th century.

I totally agree with you.  Almost every modern society object / item / facility has routes and development that can be traced back in part for a hundred or more years - and indeed it would be very rare for an invention to be able to be described as "invented on 14th July 1927" ...

I found great comfort and great distress from my discussion with Barry.  Comfort that I'm already doing a bit better than he does at my campaigning, and that he had given me an opportunity to test my own reasoning and advocacy. Distress in that there are campaigners and members of the public around who lack reasoning, lack logic, and refuse to even acknowledge the elephants in the room that need to be addressed to make their solutions have any chance.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rhydgaled on July 22, 2017, 04:35:57 pm
The sad aspect of this decision, and the much more serious decision about Bristol is that if Network Rail had a 25 year commitment to electrify the whole network, then the costs would be manageable and affordable.
 

You may be right, but I think that your statement puts more faith in NR's ability than recent evidence supports. 

Network Rail has a vision and strategy for 25 years, as asked for by the DfT ................. however politicians only have a vision and strategy for 2.5 years that is two and half years after a General Election their only vision and strategy is the next election
Does said 25yr Network Rail strategy include an ongoing rollout of electrification, and if so how detailed is it (ie. does it say which routes they would wire in which order, not necessarily by when)?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on July 22, 2017, 05:02:27 pm
Almost every modern society object / item / facility has routes and development that can be traced back in part for a hundred or more years...

Yes, and things continue to evolve. Roads have been around since animals first started scampering around leaving tracks, but only really became a viable long-distance transport system in the latter half of the twentieth century. Rail - one of the newer transport systems - is a specialised branch of the road concept which until quite recently looked like it had had its day; now it is growing again, but that may not last. Who knows what effect shared autonomous vehicles will have? Will people still use trains or buses when they can summon a vehicle to their door, at a time of their choosing, which will whisk them to their destination in comfort?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on July 22, 2017, 05:25:57 pm
Almost every modern society object / item / facility has routes and development that can be traced back in part for a hundred or more years...

Yes, and things continue to evolve. Roads have been around since animals first started scampering around leaving tracks, but only really became a viable long-distance transport system in the latter half of the twentieth century. Rail - one of the newer transport systems - is a specialised branch of the road concept which until quite recently looked like it had had its day; now it is growing again, but that may not last. Who knows what effect shared autonomous vehicles will have? Will people still use trains or buses when they can summon a vehicle to their door, at a time of their choosing, which will whisk them to their destination in comfort?

You assume that the autonomous self driving vehicles would release enough extra capacity on the road network to take away the traffic jams!  If they did would it simply fill up with more such vehicles to all traffic came to a halt again?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on July 22, 2017, 08:20:52 pm
I think it's likely that AVs will increase the demand for car travel, because it will become so much easier. You'll be able to work, sleep, eat, watch TV,... at least once they're functioning reliably! And the costs, particularly if these vehicles are electric powered rather than internal combustion, will be much lower. But at the same time the total number of car-type vehicles might be reduced, because they will be able to circulate or park somewhere till summoned. They will, or will have the potential to be, more like "taxis" than "cars". Though this will only happen if we're able to break the link between vehicle use and ownership, which is as much emotional as practical. The increasing popularity in some urban areas of car clubs and car sharing schemes shows some possibility for this, but it's far from obvious that it will go mainstream.

Probably the largest impact of AVs in the long run will be on freight; lorry drivers and van drivers will be a thing of the past, costs of road haulage will fall due to no longer paying drivers' wages, maintenance costs and associated downtime and insurance premiums are likely to fall, there will be no drivers' hours regs to adhere to, and "platooning" lorries on motorways will make big fuel savings. So railfreight is going to suffer.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on July 22, 2017, 08:40:17 pm
I think it's likely that AVs will increase the demand for car travel, because it will become so much easier. You'll be able to work, sleep, eat, watch TV,... at least once they're functioning reliably! And the costs, particularly if these vehicles are electric powered rather than internal combustion, will be much lower. But at the same time the total number of car-type vehicles might be reduced, because they will be able to circulate or park somewhere till summoned. They will, or will have the potential to be, more like "taxis" than "cars". Though this will only happen if we're able to break the link between vehicle use and ownership, which is as much emotional as practical. The increasing popularity in some urban areas of car clubs and car sharing schemes shows some possibility for this, but it's far from obvious that it will go mainstream.

Probably the largest impact of AVs in the long run will be on freight; lorry drivers and van drivers will be a thing of the past, costs of road haulage will fall due to no longer paying drivers' wages, maintenance costs and associated downtime and insurance premiums are likely to fall, there will be no drivers' hours regs to adhere to, and "platooning" lorries on motorways will make big fuel savings. So railfreight is going to suffer.


There are some sweeping assumptions here:

1) You say that "the costs, particularly if these vehicles are electric powered rather than internal combustion, will be much lower. " I see no evidence for this.  Yes the cost of fuelling electric cars is currently less, but battery costs are very high.  Sound like the same wishful thinking that have plagued a number of such ideas in the past - like the electrification train!

2) "Probably the largest impact of AVs in the long run will be on freight; lorry drivers and van drivers will be a thing of the past" I think the idea of a driverless lorry on a mixed traffic road is fantasy! 

3) You also assume that there will be enough road space for all these vehicles. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on July 22, 2017, 09:01:35 pm
That was meant to be speculation not prediction. As for costs, I was thinking that costs would be lower not only due to electric traction but mainly due to AVs not being privately owned. So the costs of maintenance, insurance, tax and so on would be born by many people for each vehicle, in a similar way to a car club. Costs per mile might be higher but overall cost of usage would be lower because you'd only be paying for the vehicle while actually using it, which obviously is a tiny minority of its life. Of course this depends on breaking the personal ownership habit, which might not happen.

Autonomous HGVs have already been tested on public roads in the USA and I think in Sweden. There are problems to be overcome before they can use urban roads particularly – the steering was found to be crude on tight corners – but they've functioned well on the relatively empty highways there. It's only a matter of time before they can be used everywhere. It might take 20 years but I expect that when the technology is ready, they will take off fast and have an enormous impact on everything from employment to shopping.

As for space for more vehicles, I'm certainly not assuming that. It's possible, as I said, that AVs will break the link between driving and owning, which could lead to fewer vehicles with more usage. If that doesn't happen, I don't see anything yet to suggest we'll change the course which has proved so successful* the world over, ie building more roads, bigger junctions, larger car parks, bypasses around ring roads, etc.

*Just in case it's not clear, this is ironic. But AVs are on the way, sometime not terribly far in the future, to a road near you. Impacts awaited.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on July 22, 2017, 09:22:44 pm
Having driven a HFC powered car on a number of occasions both at home and in the USA I find them to be the most usable alternative to the internal combustion engine.

Out of interest, have you tried a pure BEV?

Almost every modern society object / item / facility has routes and development that can be traced back in part for a hundred or more years...

Yes, and things continue to evolve. Roads have been around since animals first started scampering around leaving tracks, but only really became a viable long-distance transport system in the latter half of the twentieth century. Rail - one of the newer transport systems - is a specialised branch of the road concept which until quite recently looked like it had had its day; now it is growing again, but that may not last. Who knows what effect shared autonomous vehicles will have? Will people still use trains or buses when they can summon a vehicle to their door, at a time of their choosing, which will whisk them to their destination in comfort?

You assume that the autonomous self driving vehicles would release enough extra capacity on the road network to take away the traffic jams!  If they did would it simply fill up with more such vehicles to all traffic came to a halt again?

I made no such assumption; I asked a question.

I do, as it happens, think it is fair to assume that CAVs will free up some of the resources tied up by private non-autonomous vehicles, because they will most likely be stored and recharged away from the places where they are used. But evidence suggests that, as you say, any capacity released will soon be filled by hitherto unfulfilled demand.

That was meant to be speculation not prediction. As for costs, I was thinking that costs would be lower not only due to electric traction but mainly due to AVs not being privately owned. So the costs of maintenance, insurance, tax and so on would be born by many people for each vehicle, in a similar way to a car club. Costs per mile might be higher but overall cost of usage would be lower because you'd only be paying for the vehicle while actually using it, which obviously is a tiny minority of its life. Of course this depends on breaking the personal ownership habit, which might not happen.

Autonomous HGVs have already been tested on public roads in the USA and I think in Sweden. There are problems to be overcome before they can use urban roads particularly – the steering was found to be crude on tight corners – but they've functioned well on the relatively empty highways there. It's only a matter of time before they can be used everywhere. It might take 20 years but I expect that when the technology is ready, they will take off fast and have an enormous impact on everything from employment to shopping.

As for space for more vehicles, I'm certainly not assuming that. It's possible, as I said, that AVs will break the link between driving and owning, which could lead to fewer vehicles with more usage. If that doesn't happen, I don't see anything yet to suggest we'll change the course which has proved so successful* the world over, ie building more roads, bigger junctions, larger car parks, bypasses around ring roads, etc.

*Just in case it's not clear, this is ironic. But AVs are on the way, sometime not terribly far in the future, to a road near you. Impacts awaited.

The full impact of Level 5 CAVs is, like all disruptive technology, hard to assess - what becomes of driving jobs? The insurance industry? Will humans be allowed to drive when machines can do it much more safely?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on July 22, 2017, 10:36:05 pm
That was meant to be speculation not prediction. As for costs, I was thinking that costs would be lower not only due to electric traction but mainly due to AVs not being privately owned. So the costs of maintenance, insurance, tax and so on would be born by many people for each vehicle, in a similar way to a car club. Costs per mile might be higher but overall cost of usage would be lower because you'd only be paying for the vehicle while actually using it, which obviously is a tiny minority of its life. Of course this depends on breaking the personal ownership habit, which might not happen.

So you are assuming car clubs will suddenly become more popular.  That is a major cultural change. 

Autonomous HGVs have already been tested on public roads in the USA and I think in Sweden. There are problems to be overcome before they can use urban roads particularly – the steering was found to be crude on tight corners – but they've functioned well on the relatively empty highways there. It's only a matter of time before they can be used everywhere. It might take 20 years but I expect that when the technology is ready, they will take off fast and have an enormous impact on everything from employment to shopping.

Yes but there is a big difference between an AV with someone who could take control if it all went badly and an AV with no on in it.  Again you are assuming a major cultural change.  I would not want to be anywhere near an HGV AV without a real person in it.

As for space for more vehicles, I'm certainly not assuming that. It's possible, as I said, that AVs will break the link between driving and owning, which could lead to fewer vehicles with more usage. If that doesn't happen, I don't see anything yet to suggest we'll change the course which has proved so successful* the world over, ie building more roads, bigger junctions, larger car parks, bypasses around ring roads, etc.

*Just in case it's not clear, this is ironic. But AVs are on the way, sometime not terribly far in the future, to a road near you. Impacts awaited.

You may be ironic but I saw an article the other day from some nutter who said that HS2 would be unnecessary because of AVs and that it should be replaced with a new motorway was would take up far less space because it would only need two lanes!  (He needs to go and look at Yeadon Way in Blackpool to see what road you can build on the line of a two-track railway!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on July 23, 2017, 09:33:26 am
That was meant to be speculation not prediction. As for costs, I was thinking that costs would be lower not only due to electric traction but mainly due to AVs not being privately owned. So the costs of maintenance, insurance, tax and so on would be born by many people for each vehicle, in a similar way to a car club. Costs per mile might be higher but overall cost of usage would be lower because you'd only be paying for the vehicle while actually using it, which obviously is a tiny minority of its life. Of course this depends on breaking the personal ownership habit, which might not happen.

So you are assuming car clubs will suddenly become more popular.  That is a major cultural change. 


Cultural change is happening! 

The biggest problem with Car Clubs is the uncertainty and inconvenience - will I be able to reserve the car I need, when I need it, within walking distance of where I am? CAVs get around this by delivering the car you need to your door when you need it. The old 'ownership' model is fading fast, with more and more people opting to lease a private car. Meanwhile firms like VW are rebranding themselves as 'mobility providers', whose product is a ride, not a car.

All this must have implications for public transport, perhaps particularly in rural areas. How does this disruptive technology work alongside rail? I'm not sure many people are thinking about that yet!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on July 23, 2017, 10:40:49 am
In answer to your question Red Squirrel I have driven BEV cars on a track and in traffic in fact my experience of BEV dates back to the 1970s however that was a Unigate GTI and so not all that revelant to this discussion.                                             (Milk Float ) ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on July 23, 2017, 11:38:31 am
In answer to your question Red Squirrel I have driven BEV cars on a track and in traffic in fact my experience of BEV dates back to the 1970s however that was a Unigate GTI and so not all that revelant to this discussion.                                             (Milk Float ) ;D

I realise we have wandered off-topic here...

I am still intrigued as to which characteristics of fuel cell power make it preferable to battery power, given that in essence it's just another way of producing a direct current. Regenerative braking aside, the actual driving characteristics are similar, aren't they? So does it come down to the convenience of being able to top up with hydrogen in a few minutes - there's almost certainly a filling station within 300km of where you live ;) - as opposed to charging overnight at home?

Edit: Off-topic, not off-tropic. And can I just say that my iPad's pathetic attempts at second-guessing what I actually wanted to type are currently one of the biggest threats to my mental health?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on July 23, 2017, 08:06:46 pm
HLOS is only about CP6, 2020-2024, and nothing else. The electrification pencilled in for CP6, and in theory not even started in design work, has been dropped. I don't see that as a statement about CP7 and later, not either way - no-one would be impressed by a promise of maybe for after 2024, so there would be no point making one.

Actually, we'll have to wait and see what "HLOS" means now. As Rhygdaled has pointed out elsewhere, there is going to be a new system for commissioning infrastructure projects.

Last week's mini-HLOS said (of itself): "The Statement does not commit to infrastructure enhancements. These are expected to be dealt with separately." The announcement of the HLOS was a bit more specific, saying:
Quote
The HLOS is therefore focussed on the operation, maintenance and renewal of the existing railway — the areas of activity that will deliver a more reliable railway for passengers. The government is already delivering significant enhancements to the railway, including High Speed 2 and Crossrail and it expects to continue to invest in the enhancement to the wider rail network in the next control period. In light of the findings of the Bowe Review, which emphasised the need to enable better planning, cost control and alignment with the needs of users of the railway, government will take forward the funding of these enhancements separately. The government is developing a new process for delivering enhancements and intends to publish more information on this in the autumn.

So far they have promised a new SoFA after reviewing the cost of renewals etc., in October. What Colette Bowe actually called for was this:
Quote
6.22 These highly complex schemes, which in planning and delivery may extend well beyond the duration of a control period, would in my view benefit from focused and bespoke governance, such as with Thameslink and Crossrail. The Department should consider whether major route enhancement schemes (in particular) should continue to be tied to the periodic review cycle or whether they should be handled under bespoke arrangements such as those in place for Crossrail and Thameslink. This would provide Ministers with opportunities to decide how to progress schemes as deliverability and affordability is progressively assured, rather than artificially accelerating schemes to meet the requirements of the access charge review and would incentivise better early planning and programme oversight.
6.23 It is extremely important to note, however, that medium-term funding certainty for Network Rail, and by implication the supply chain, is both welcome and necessary, as reflected in EU and domestic legislation. In other words, I do not recommend replacing the periodic review system for operations and maintenance and renewals expenditure.

Or, put another way, big projects should not be artificially forced into the 5-year CP framework. But as to small projects, she says nothing, and the deferred bits of GW electrification are small in her terms. And she does not say the HLOS as such (i.e. for DfT to specify what they want done in the simplest user-oriented terms, and let NR convert that into the technical requirement and cost it) should be abandoned. She does say DfT have to be told more about how NR do that.

So we'll have to wait and see what the Grayling come up with. It will be some time before he even has to field questions on what he's up to from MPs.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 23, 2017, 08:21:34 pm
My money is on projects being removed from NR control/influence...... ;)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on July 23, 2017, 09:05:13 pm
So who would put them forward if not NR


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on July 23, 2017, 09:15:23 pm
So who would put them forward if not NR

And how could the work be coordinated and possessions arranged except through NR?

It is possible for something like East-West where the work is being done away from the operational railway, but for anything else it would be a nightmare!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on July 24, 2017, 01:55:27 pm
That was meant to be speculation not prediction. As for costs, I was thinking that costs would be lower not only due to electric traction but mainly due to AVs not being privately owned. So the costs of maintenance, insurance, tax and so on would be born by many people for each vehicle, in a similar way to a car club. Costs per mile might be higher but overall cost of usage would be lower because you'd only be paying for the vehicle while actually using it, which obviously is a tiny minority of its life. Of course this depends on breaking the personal ownership habit, which might not happen.

So you are assuming car clubs will suddenly become more popular.  That is a major cultural change. 
Not necessarily car clubs as such. Could be more like Uber – a hail and ride system. The increasing popularity of car clubs is, as Red Squirrel has said, evidence of such cultural change in progress, as is the decline in driving licences issued to those under ~25. I don't agree with RS that leasing is another change in ownership though, to my mind it's more a change in finances; you still have possession of the leased vehicle on a day to day basis. They key thing is a break in the link between travel and vehicle.

Autonomous HGVs have already been tested on public roads in the USA and I think in Sweden. There are problems to be overcome before they can use urban roads particularly – the steering was found to be crude on tight corners – but they've functioned well on the relatively empty highways there. It's only a matter of time before they can be used everywhere. It might take 20 years but I expect that when the technology is ready, they will take off fast and have an enormous impact on everything from employment to shopping.

Yes but there is a big difference between an AV with someone who could take control if it all went badly and an AV with no on in it.  Again you are assuming a major cultural change.  I would not want to be anywhere near an HGV AV without a real person in it.
Quote
Aren't you assuming stasis in technology?

As for space for more vehicles, I'm certainly not assuming that. It's possible, as I said, that AVs will break the link between driving and owning, which could lead to fewer vehicles with more usage. If that doesn't happen, I don't see anything yet to suggest we'll change the course which has proved so successful* the world over, ie building more roads, bigger junctions, larger car parks, bypasses around ring roads, etc.

*Just in case it's not clear, this is ironic. But AVs are on the way, sometime not terribly far in the future, to a road near you. Impacts awaited.

You may be ironic but I saw an article the other day from some nutter who said that HS2 would be unnecessary because of AVs and that it should be replaced with a new motorway was would take up far less space because it would only need two lanes!  (He needs to go and look at Yeadon Way in Blackpool to see what road you can build on the line of a two-track railway!
Not my nutter!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 24, 2017, 02:39:19 pm
So who would put them forward if not NR?

The DfT would be the specifier/procurement agency and consultants and contractors would do the design/delivery and hand it over to NR for maintenance.  That is basically how delivery works now but with NR being the specifier/procurement agency (which is the bit that they generally make a mess of, and the government don't like).  Possessions would be agreed with NR as they are now.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on July 24, 2017, 05:59:37 pm
So who would put them forward if not NR?

The DfT would be the specifier/procurement agency and consultants and contractors would do the design/delivery and hand it over to NR for maintenance.  That is basically how delivery works now but with NR being the specifier/procurement agency (which is the bit that they generally make a mess of, and the government don't like).  Possessions would be agreed with NR as they are now.

The DfT would be the specifier/procurement agency   And that would be more cost effective  ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

and consultants and contractors would do the design/delivery and they are not renowned for finding extras and cost due to over runs  ;D ;D ;D ;D

and hand it over to NR for maintenance  NR would want all the drawings, spares, training etc in place before accepting it into service and the DfT will have to accept train delay cost

In actual fact its NR Projects organisation that needs sorting out, CP4 reorg for CP5 made a complete hash,  the Route Project Director should report to the Route Managing Director


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 24, 2017, 07:00:13 pm
So who would put them forward if not NR?

The DfT would be the specifier/procurement agency and consultants and contractors would do the design/delivery and hand it over to NR for maintenance.  That is basically how delivery works now but with NR being the specifier/procurement agency (which is the bit that they generally make a mess of, and the government don't like).  Possessions would be agreed with NR as they are now.

The DfT would be the specifier/procurement agency   And that would be more cost effective  ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;Dl


and consultants and contractors would do the design/delivery and they are not renowned for finding extras and cost due to over runs  ;D ;D ;D ;D

and hand it over to NR for maintenance  NR would want all the drawings, spares, training etc in place before accepting it into service and the DfT will have to accept train delay cost

In actual fact its NR Projects organisation that needs sorting out, CP4 reorg for CP5 made a complete hash,  the Route Project Director should report to the Route Managing Director

In reality ET you know that's almost how it works at the moment.  I'm betting on the 'middle man' (i.e. NR) being cut out of the loop.  Wasn't the recent goverment edict that NR should concentrate on maintenance, the actual 'first step'?........ ::) :P


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 24, 2017, 09:11:00 pm
And one of the other campaigners suggested that things/systems that have been around for 100 years need to be replaced with something newer. His suggestion's to scrap all buses and trains, and replace them with things like guided systems - automated or semiautomated, such as you'll see at Heathrow (https://londonist.com/2014/09/a-ride-on-heathrows-self-driving-pods) and in parts of Cambridgeshire (http://www.thebusway.info).  "Nothing that's been around over 100 years should still be in use" was his view;
There's not much in transport that hasn't been around for more than 100 years, except space travel. Even electric cars were around in the late 19th century.

I totally agree with you.  Almost every modern society object / item / facility has routes and development that can be traced back in part for a hundred or more years - and indeed it would be very rare for an invention to be able to be described as "invented on 14th July 1927" ...

I found great comfort and great distress from my discussion with Barry.  Comfort that I'm already doing a bit better than he does at my campaigning, and that he had given me an opportunity to test my own reasoning and advocacy. Distress in that there are campaigners and members of the public around who lack reasoning, lack logic, and refuse to even acknowledge the elephants in the room that need to be addressed to make their solutions have any chance.

It will all be hyperloop - knew I had seen it somewhere:
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/07/this-is-how-hyperloop-one-would-work


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on July 24, 2017, 09:46:05 pm
So who would put them forward if not NR?

The DfT would be the specifier/procurement agency and consultants and contractors would do the design/delivery and hand it over to NR for maintenance.  That is basically how delivery works now but with NR being the specifier/procurement agency (which is the bit that they generally make a mess of, and the government don't like).  Possessions would be agreed with NR as they are now.

The DfT would be the specifier/procurement agency   And that would be more cost effective  ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;Dl


and consultants and contractors would do the design/delivery and they are not renowned for finding extras and cost due to over runs  ;D ;D ;D ;D

and hand it over to NR for maintenance  NR would want all the drawings, spares, training etc in place before accepting it into service and the DfT will have to accept train delay cost

In actual fact its NR Projects organisation that needs sorting out, CP4 reorg for CP5 made a complete hash,  the Route Project Director should report to the Route Managing Director

In reality ET you know that's almost how it works at the moment.  I'm betting on the 'middle man' (i.e. NR) being cut out of the loop.  Wasn't the recent goverment edict that NR should concentrate on maintenance, the actual 'first step'?........ ::) :P

This true .............. I just cannot see the men from the Ministary being more efficent,  I can also see NR using projects run external to them as leaverage for not doing maintainace as NR would loose control of the track access, the DfT not wanting contractor costs to run away will run rough shod over NR maintainace.  The DfT will not like the contractor running late handing back a posssesion becuse NR and the TOC will be after losses; DfT would end up only having a few token high profile projects centred around HS2 to ake them look good.

Contractors are warey of PFI so are unlikely o do joint ventures with the Government.

NR's Project set up needs a damn good  :o :o :o :o :o :o It is crazy a well honed setup like Thameslink Program is being dismembered all the lessions learnt, the expirenced teams and people, the process, doc control etc etc all will be gone in a year.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on July 24, 2017, 10:10:10 pm
I realise we have wandered off-topic here...

I am still intrigued as to which characteristics of fuel cell power make it preferable to battery power, given that in essence it's just another way of producing a direct current. Regenerative braking aside, the actual driving characteristics are similar, aren't they? So does it come down to the convenience of being able to top up with hydrogen in a few minutes - there's almost certainly a filling station within 300km of where you live ;) - as opposed to charging overnight at home?

Actually around 70km from my home, at the Honda factory in Swindon. There are plans for a filling station in Bristol, but one is hardly going to get things moving in a big way. I used to drive a LPG powered car which took careful planning of my working day to fit in a call close to one of the filling stations, and there were quite a few in Bristol. For the reason of infrastructure, I doubt hydrogen will catch on other than for specialised commercial vehicles. Batteries are improving, and the government has just allocated research funds to help improve them more, and electricity from batteries must surely be the way forward for the private car. Not for trains though, other than on short branch lines. For big fast trains, the future must be 25,000 V AC. Mass transit within cities will eventually be steel wheel on steel rail, with 700 V DC or thereabouts, with dual voltage tram-trains operating in the medium distance commuter market. That makes the decision to delay the electrification into Bristol and Swansea seem very short sighted, more so than the previous two decisions to delay it.

Charging overnight is a good idea, provided of course that you enjoy off-street parking.I currently do not, and cannot guarantee being able to leave the car outside my house. Nor would I like to have a cable running across the pavement. And if we all exchanged our internal combustion engined cars for electric overnight, we would need 20 new nuclear power stations and/or a couple of million extra wind turbines. But it would be an efficient way to use off-peak electricity, which, given we are all buying LED light bulbs would probably be offered during the daytime.

Hydrogen, as you point out, is not a fuel, but a form of energy storage. It may be the most abundant element in the universe, but not in a free form on Earth in any great quantity. It can be produced by electrolysis of water, which is rather energy intensive. Industrial quantities are often produced by using superheated steam at high pressure to knock the carbon atoms off methane - CH4 + H2O → CO + 3 H2. Unfortunately, that leaves a by-product of carbon monoxide, not nice stuff. That can be burned to provide energy, but you still end up with carbon dioxide, which is what you want to get rid of in the first place. Plus there is the energy needed to produce the hydrogen, likely to be carbon-based unless you live in France.

Which is why I am not placing bets on hydrogen as a fuel for trains in this millennium. Overhead line equipment is what we need. Bordeaux has an elegant tram system, powered in sensitive areas by induction from coils buried below the track, but it cost a lot more than a standard tram setup, and probably only happened because the Mayor happened to be Alain Juppé, the former Prime Minister. I don't think that even having Tony Blair or John Major as the Western Super Mayor (©bignosemac) would do the trick around Bristol.

In support of hydrogen as the motive force, a fuel cell probably lasts a lot longer than a lithium ion battery. My son-in-common-law has a property maintenance business. My Makita lithium ion drill has been giving me sterling service for a good 5 years. He gets through two or three a year - the batteries cost nearly as much as the drill. You don't buy spare batteries -  they charge in just over 20 minutes, which is about the length of my tea break. He is currently enjoying almost 12 months unbroken service from a De Walt, though. Other drills are available.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on July 24, 2017, 11:48:42 pm
Bordeaux has an elegant tram system, powered in sensitive areas by induction from coils buried below the track, but it cost a lot more than a standard tram setup, and probably only happened because the Mayor happened to be Alain Juppé, the former Prime Minister.

Not quite. Alstom don't use inductive coupling; the APS (ground power supply) system developed for Bordeaux uses a flush contact rail energised in sections as the tram passes over. And they have supplied it to several cites since then. Starting with Nice they added on-board batteries to the ground supply, and are now pushing supercapacitors. This allows the ground contact to be reduced to a plate at each stop.

How the numbers work out isn't entirely clear. They talk about 13.5 kWh maximum, and a recharge period of 20 s, which calls for a few MW or a few kA at 750V - similar to a train. At roughly 600kW per tram, you only get a minute or two of full power - which may be enough to get to the next stop (you hope, anyway).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 26, 2017, 12:28:25 pm
Press release from TravelWatch NorthWest - I have mirrored (here) (http://atrebatia.info/twnw_20170726.pdf)

Quote
Over 2 years ago, a ceremony in Windermere, led by Baroness Kramer, celebrated the announcement that the line would be electrified early as part of the scheme to bring new electric train services to the North of England. Businesses and rail passenger groups in the Lake District, recently designated a World Heritage Site, are understandably angry at this spectacular U-turn, particularly as additional investment in Cross Rail 2 in London was announced at virtually the same time. It appears that the government’s attitude to favour the South over the North still exists in earnest.

The good people of Bristol (a somewhat larger place than Windermere) and Bath (also a world heritage place) may feel unfavoured too even though they're in the south.   In fact they may feel even more angry in that the provision of  new local and regional trains in the North isn't matched in the Bristol (West) area, where they're getting London's cast offs.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on July 26, 2017, 12:46:09 pm
The good people of Bristol (a somewhat larger place than Windermere) and Bath (also a world heritage place) may feel unfavoured too even though they're in the south.   In fact they may feel even more angry in that the provision of  new local and regional trains in the North isn't matched in the Bristol (West) area, where they're getting London's cast offs.
Couldn't agree more, especially when a few years back the plan was to order a new fleet of trains for the Cardiff-Portsmouth line. Be it Labour or Tory, the cackhanded way the railways are treated by Dft is a disgrace. They have no idea from one day to the next what they are doing. Make it up as you go along.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on July 26, 2017, 12:49:49 pm
I think most DfT civil servants have a good grasp of what's going on and what is needed.

The cackhandedness comes from the ministers, and government generally.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on July 26, 2017, 12:56:45 pm
The best transport minister we've had for a long time was Lord Adonis. I was sad to see him go. John Prescott looked promising when he was in opposition that he would be good for the railways but was a massive disappointment once in power.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 26, 2017, 01:13:26 pm
I think most DfT civil servants have a good grasp of what's going on and what is needed.

The cackhandedness comes from the ministers, and government generally.

It is very interesting to contrast styles - Andrew Adonis, to Patrick McLoughlin and Claire Perry, to Chris Grayling and Paul Maynard.

Something worries me about having an unelected minister (as Lord Adonis was) and yet he really seemed to understand the direction he should be headed and to have been able to take a longer term view - not just to the next election, and not based on a political dogma.  Perhaps we didn't see him for long enough for any slips. 

It is fascinating how Claire Perry - the rail minister - was so heavily involved in matters and he boss Patrick McL took a lighter role, yet the visibility has now changes and it's Chris Grayling (Patrick's replacement) rather than Paul (in place of Claire) we largely see.  You comment, BNM, about the civil servants having a grasp but the ministers not ... there are exceptions there, and Claire Perry was one of them - that's from personal experience (and, no, that's not because she gave us everything we asked for - she certainly didn't, and argued an informed case as to why, face to face!)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 26, 2017, 08:13:57 pm
The good people of Bristol (a somewhat larger place than Windermere) and Bath (also a world heritage place) may feel unfavoured too even though they're in the south.   In fact they may feel even more angry in that the provision of  new local and regional trains in the North isn't matched in the Bristol (West) area, where they're getting London's cast offs.
Couldn't agree more, especially when a few years back the plan was to order a new fleet of trains for the Cardiff-Portsmouth line. Be it Labour or Tory, the cackhanded way the railways are treated by Dft is a disgrace. They have no idea from one day to the next what they are doing. Make it up as you go along.

Rather confirmed ... from The Yorkshire Post (http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/opinion/chris-grayling-government-will-not-let-north-down-on-transport-1-8671510)

Quote
Chris Grayling: Government will not let North down on transport



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on July 26, 2017, 09:23:00 pm

Charging overnight is a good idea, provided of course that you enjoy off-street parking.I currently do not, and cannot guarantee being able to leave the car outside my house. Nor would I like to have a cable running across the pavement.


Overnight charging is, as you say, a problem for those without off-street parking. However there is no shortage of potential solutions, none of which require the use of an extension lead: Induction coils under the road surface have, for example and if you'll forgive the pun, potential, though it'll obviously require quite a bit of investment to make them a reality. Meanwhile ubitricity (http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/london-street-lamps-electric-car-charging-points-ubitricity-tech-firm-hounslow-council-richmond-a7809126.html) have a simpler medium-term solution...*

*I do like the Independent's caption claiming their photo was taken in London - last time I checked, the French church of Friedrichstadt was in Berlin. Hey ho.



And if we all exchanged our internal combustion engined cars for electric overnight, we would need 20 new nuclear power stations and/or a couple of million extra wind turbines. But it would be an efficient way to use off-peak electricity, which, given we are all buying LED light bulbs would probably be offered during the daytime.


Well we won't though, will we? It'll take 15-20 years. There is currently (sic) sufficient capacity to charge half the fleet overnight. By the time we get to that point the world will be a different place.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rhydgaled on July 27, 2017, 10:17:38 am
Who knows what effect shared autonomous vehicles will have? Will people still use trains or buses when they can summon a vehicle to their door, at a time of their choosing, which will whisk them to their destination in comfort?
I think it's likely that AVs will increase the demand for car travel, because it will become so much easier. You'll be able to work, sleep, eat, watch TV,... at least once they're functioning reliably!
That's what I'm afraid driverless cars will do.

Probably the largest impact of AVs in the long run will be on freight; lorry drivers and van drivers will be a thing of the past, costs of road haulage will fall due to no longer paying drivers' wages, maintenance costs and associated downtime and insurance premiums are likely to fall, there will be no drivers' hours regs to adhere to, and "platooning" lorries on motorways will make big fuel savings. So railfreight is going to suffer.
Also very worrying...

the total number of car-type vehicles might be reduced, because they will be able to circulate or park somewhere till summoned. They will, or will have the potential to be, more like "taxis" than "cars". Though this will only happen if we're able to break the link between vehicle use and ownership
That is the one and only glimmer of hope; if driverless cars become a taxi service rather than private vehicles they could be integrated into a joined-up public transport system; driverless taxi takes passengers in sparsely-populated areas to their nearest bus route, which takes them to the train if they're making a long journey across Britain. Individual motorised vehicles, even automated ones, are always going to be less energy-efficient for transporting a large number of passengers than a single (electric) bus or train, with electric trains having the further advantage of reduced weight given that they don't need to carry their electricity around with them in heavy batteries.

You assume that the autonomous self driving vehicles would release enough extra capacity on the road network to take away the traffic jams!  If they did would it simply fill up with more such vehicles to all traffic came to a halt again?
Automated vehicles will presumably help congestion, but I'd doubt they'll be as space-efficient as public transport. Unfortunately the government don't seem interested in that, they've just announced a ban on petrol and diesel cars (but not buses I believe) and scrapped the most engery-efficient mode of motorised mass transit (electric rail). The result if the bus industry stays with diesel and the rail industry isn't allowed to respond to climate change by electrifying the network will be that public transport loses its environemently-friendly credentials (due to being stuck with diesel). This in turn would allow the government to ban buses and close all diesel-worked rail routes and also justify their ongoing obsession with road building. What a mess.

Also, re-posting the following as Electric train must have missed it (or else I missed the reply):
The sad aspect of this decision, and the much more serious decision about Bristol is that if Network Rail had a 25 year commitment to electrify the whole network, then the costs would be manageable and affordable.
You may be right, but I think that your statement puts more faith in NR's ability than recent evidence supports. 

Network Rail has a vision and strategy for 25 years, as asked for by the DfT ................. however politicians only have a vision and strategy for 2.5 years that is two and half years after a General Election their only vision and strategy is the next election
Does said 25yr Network Rail strategy include an ongoing rollout of electrification, and if so how detailed is it (ie. does it say which routes they would wire in which order, not necessarily by when)?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on July 27, 2017, 10:34:50 am
Going off at a slight tangent, and gazing into the crystal ball - I wonder if there's vague scope for road and rail combining again in the future along the lines of good old Motorail?

One of the current (no pun intended) problems with electric cars is their lack of range. A system where compact, limited range electric cars could be loaded on to wagons (with owners in accompanying carriages) and taken longer distances could be interesting. There's even scope to trickle-charge the cars whilst on the train (but not between Cardiff and Swansea, obviously...)




Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: John R on July 27, 2017, 11:16:36 am
That's what I'm afraid driverless cars will do.

Also very worrying...


It appears a curious logic to be worried about developments which will make road transport cheaper, more efficient, environmentally more friendly, safer etc, purely because it will be at the cost of rail. Surely we should be pleased if the form of transport that makes up the majority of passenger and freight journeys improves in every respect? 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on July 27, 2017, 12:51:35 pm
A system where compact, limited range [Really? Do keep up! - Ed] electric cars could be loaded on to wagons (with owners in accompanying carriages) and taken longer distances could be interesting. There's even scope to trickle-charge the cars whilst on the train (but not between Cardiff and Swansea, obviously...)

Like this? https://www.boringcompany.com/


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 27, 2017, 01:52:22 pm
A system where compact, limited range [Really? Do keep up! - Ed] electric cars could be loaded on to wagons (with owners in accompanying carriages) and taken longer distances could be interesting. There's even scope to trickle-charge the cars whilst on the train (but not between Cardiff and Swansea, obviously...)

Like this? https://www.boringcompany.com/

Or like this?

(http://www.wellho.net/pix/motorail_carlisle.jpg)

The copyright on this image is owned by Dave Hitchborne and is licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 license.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on July 27, 2017, 01:56:15 pm
Carlisle station


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on July 27, 2017, 02:06:22 pm
And an Austin Maxi.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: BBM on July 27, 2017, 02:36:00 pm
Here's something from the more recent past  ;)

(http://bobfostersrailgallery.weebly.com/uploads/7/8/7/0/7870804/8908...08.06.08.long_marston_open_day.first_great_western_motorail_stock_nva96608.jpg)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: John R on July 27, 2017, 03:12:23 pm
Did that from Penzance to London in 2001 to avoid a long journey with a 2 and 4 year old back to Bedfordshire. Very pleasant it was too.  Even ended up going through MKM if I recall due to a diversion.   


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: lbraine on August 03, 2017, 07:23:25 am
Observation from this AMs run into PAD.

The relief line wires are up and continuous between Didcot and Maidenhead. The OHLE contractor must have pushed very hard to fill in the gaps between Reading and Maidenhead.

And when I say wires up - I do mean everything, not just the wires hanging from the dangly bits.

So with infrastructure in place (energised ?) GWR can commit to 385's taking over from Turbos, which can start the Big Cascade! Right ?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rhydgaled on August 03, 2017, 09:06:14 am
Observation from this AMs run into PAD.

The relief line wires are up and continuous between Didcot and Maidenhead. The OHLE contractor must have pushed very hard to fill in the gaps between Reading and Maidenhead.

And when I say wires up - I do mean everything, not just the wires hanging from the dangly bits.

So with infrastructure in place (energised ?) GWR can commit to 385's taking over from Turbos, which can start the Big Cascade! Right ?
What about the main lines, are only the reliefs wired so far? And I don't think GWR have any plans to use 385s; I think the GWR EMUs are 387s aren't they?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on August 03, 2017, 09:16:06 am
I thought they'd been testing the 800s on the wires to DID for a little while now, not just to MAI?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rhydgaled on August 03, 2017, 09:28:47 am
I thought they'd been testing the 800s on the wires to DID for a little while now, not just to MAI?
Didcot to Reading was the 'test track' section for the class 800s, so that section has been wired for a while but when the PAD to Maindenhead EMU services started there was still a gap between Maindenhead and Reading that was not yet electrified. No idea if that is still the case, as I try to avoid London.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on August 03, 2017, 09:31:47 am
oh, ok, thanks for that


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on August 03, 2017, 09:40:54 am
Observation from this AMs run into PAD.

The relief line wires are up and continuous between Didcot and Maidenhead. The OHLE contractor must have pushed very hard to fill in the gaps between Reading and Maidenhead.

And when I say wires up - I do mean everything, not just the wires hanging from the dangly bits.

So with infrastructure in place (energised ?) GWR can commit to 385's taking over from Turbos, which can start the Big Cascade! Right ?

Once the wires were all there through Reading, which was about a month ago, the straight bit to Maidenhead ought to be relatively quick. However, it's very hard to see if all the fiddly bits are in place - you'd need to know what's in the drawings. That's especially true at the east end of Reading station, where there is a lot of stuff. I guess there's a section break, plus all the isolation breaks for the points, but even then there's more stuff than is easy to explain.

To expand on that point about points: everywhere the line splits (e.g. between two platforms), or there's a crossover, there is a manual switch. That allows you to isolate any running line with a fault and use the others until such time as the line can be closed for a repair. Each isolation needs two or three extra short runs of wires (catenary and contact) and these need extra registration arms to keep then apart where they overlap. If you go onto platform 6 at Reading, past the ends of the through platforms, there's a forest of this switching stuff which certainly wasn't near complete last week.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: lbraine on August 03, 2017, 12:25:24 pm
I can't comment on the main line - as the HST roof was blocking my view !

The turnouts and goods waiting lines all looked wired - and I did note some very large looking metallic throw switches mounted at points along the way - which I presumed were circuit breakers for one reason or another.

Clearly can't comment on whether they were all in-situ as required.

I did notice that several of the temporary sites used a long the line for equipment and material storage also looks empty of heavy metal, cables drums etc.

Maybe the contractors just cleaned up before going on their summer hols !!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on August 03, 2017, 01:41:44 pm
As discussed on another thread, switch on in the Reading area is 16/17th September, I assume a few weeks after that will see testing of 387s etc.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on August 03, 2017, 10:14:41 pm
Observation from this AMs run into PAD.

The relief line wires are up and continuous between Didcot and Maidenhead. The OHLE contractor must have pushed very hard to fill in the gaps between Reading and Maidenhead.

And when I say wires up - I do mean everything, not just the wires hanging from the dangly bits.

So with infrastructure in place (energised ?) GWR can commit to 385's taking over from Turbos, which can start the Big Cascade! Right ?

There are electrification system tests planned, part of this is the section proving around Reading.  Also the SCADA has to be reprogramed and tested to bring in the Auto Transformers, the GWEP electrification past Maidenhead uses a IEC61850 based electrical protection scheme which has to be commissioned and fully tested, its not an overnight test, this does need the Auto Transformer system between Kensal Green and Didcot to be complete.

The planned public timetable use is Jan 18 although ECS moves, test and drive training runs may well start before this 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on August 15, 2017, 08:11:09 pm
I saw one of the new Hitachis pulling into Severn Tunnel Junction late this morning. First time I've seen one up close. Even in it's unliveried uniform grey it looked impressive. Almost felt I was on the continent.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightf48544 on August 16, 2017, 08:09:11 am
Looks may  be deceptive.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on August 22, 2017, 02:41:29 pm
Bristol - Cardiff Electrification contract re-award: http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/single-view/view/balfour-beatty-wins-bristol-cardiff-electrification-contract.html


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: FremlinsMan on September 03, 2017, 05:50:11 pm
This IET event sounds highly relevant - https://communities.theiet.org/communities/events/item/259/266/18217

Details at http://www.theiet.org/events/local/250178.cfm

Open to all (not just IET members) and free to attend, but need to register by September 21st.
 
===

Great Western Railway Electrification

Added by IET Event
0 Comments |
DESCRIPTION
Great Western Railway Electrification, a presentation by Darrel Tiddy.

More info
DATE & TIME
Thursday 28 September 2017 2:00 pm BST
END DATE & TIME
Thursday 28 September 2017 4:00 pm BST
ADDRESS
Swindon Training Centre
Whitehall Road South
Swindon, SN21FB
United Kingdom


About this event
Darrel Tiddy, Senior Asset Engineer will deliver presentation on the Great Western Electrification Project and the Overhead Line Equipment (OLE) being installed.  A close up view of the OLE being installed will be possible through an outdoor tour around the Electrification Training Centre.

Programme
13:45 - Event open
14:00 - Lecture starts
16:00 - Event close
Registration information
Registration is required to attend and closes at the end of 21st September 2017.

===


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on September 04, 2017, 12:38:30 am
Looks may  be deceptive.
Or not.

Time will tell.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on September 28, 2017, 08:57:44 pm
This IET event sounds highly relevant - https://communities.theiet.org/communities/events/item/259/266/18217

Details at http://www.theiet.org/events/local/250178.cfm

Open to all (not just IET members) and free to attend, but need to register by September 21st.
 

Thank you for that - a fascinating afternoon.  I learned an enormous amount about electrification ... and will never look at that catenary or pantograph in quite the same way again.

(http://www.wellho.net/pix/nr_training_1.jpg)
.
(http://www.wellho.net/pix/nr_training_2.jpg)
.
(http://www.wellho.net/pix/nr_training_3.jpg)
.
(http://www.wellho.net/pix/nr_training_4.jpg)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: John R on September 28, 2017, 09:31:05 pm
Did they explain why there is so much steelwork compared with previous schemes (and indeed the pictures I've seen of the current Scottish electrification projects appear more like the older installations too.)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on September 28, 2017, 09:48:40 pm
Did they explain why there is so much steelwork compared with previous schemes (and indeed the pictures I've seen of the current Scottish electrification projects appear more like the older installations too.)

Higher tensions and pressures for faster running ... need for stuff that lasts longer and needs less maintenance because we're headed for the 24 x 7 railway.  Also quicker maintenance by replacing components rather than tailoring each piece.  But the folks today are on the maintenance training rather than design side; 100 OHLE and associated engineers to be trained. Not only GWR mainline, but Crossrail too - which is the bigger one for maintenance because of the huge number of extra pantograph passes over the wire.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on September 28, 2017, 10:47:54 pm
Appears to be work ongoing on the B&H this week, with more infrastructure erection between Southcote Jct and Theale, and also between Ufton Nervet and Aldermaston.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: John R on September 28, 2017, 10:50:08 pm
Thanks for the explanation.

Though I expect that faster running is 140mph specified that we will never see, just like the Pendolinos and Class 91s will never achieve their design potential in service.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on October 06, 2017, 07:49:25 am
In view of the importance of highlighting the total closure of Reading station next weekend, I have split this topic which can be found on this board by clicking the link below:

Total Weekend Closure of Reading 14-15 October
http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=18827.0


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 06, 2017, 08:03:49 pm

Though I expect that faster running is 140mph specified that we will never see, just like the Pendolinos and Class 91s will never achieve their design potential in service.

The current plan is to remain at 125, although there is an aspiration to all a higher permissible speed once full ETCS is in place. 

The main driver for the GW scheme was lessons learnt from the Mk3 equipment on the ECML and the modified Mk1 on the WCML both have inherent failure modes.   The support steel and piles used on the GW are heavier that perhaps needed and I know this is one aspect the designers are looking at to see if something can be done but still meet the requirement DfT place on the scheme; however if you look at the GW OLE system there is generally one insulator per structure that supports both the contact wire and catenary where as the Mk3 had at least 2.  This reduces the likelihood of insulator failure by about 50% also the wire run design is elegant in its simplicity.

The other thing the GW scheme is using is carrier wire neutral sections similar to the ones used on HS1, instead of the NR norm is beaded neutral sections, the first of these carrier wire neutral sections is due to be commissioned at Maidenhead, the neutral sections are located West of country end of the Silco Drive sidings


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on October 06, 2017, 10:51:07 pm
Thanks II. There is clearly more to the GWR electrification than meets the eye of the layman. This is a new design using engineering techniques developed because of the problems on earlier projects. There's no better way than learning from somebody else's mistakes, although headline cost probably played a large part in choosing the Mk1 and Mk3 systems.

Do it cheap, do it twice.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 08, 2017, 07:21:48 pm
A couple of contrasting pictures from recent days

(http://www.wellho.net/pix/ohl_south.jpg) (http://www.wellho.net/pix/ohl_north.jpg)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: dviner on October 09, 2017, 06:44:32 pm
I like the way that the Series 1 arm (the left one of Grahame's pictures) holds both the support and contact wires - much simpler than the other example.





Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 09, 2017, 09:09:01 pm
I like the way that the Series 1 arm (the left one of Grahame's pictures) holds both the support and contact wires - much simpler than the other example.

The one on the right is Mk3 but it like its either in a station or a depot, normally the insulators on Mk3 and Mk1 are mounted on the structure (mast) end of the cantilevers, this was due to the weight of the porcelain insulators used.  The reason I think the right hand photo is a station area this arrangement is used to ensure live parts are as far away from the public as possible.

The image on the left as I mentioned in a post earlier the GW OLE design is exigent in its simplicity, its just the structures used to support it are a tad OTT.  In the left photo the conductor above structure boom is the ATF (Auto transformer Feeder).  There is 50kV between the ATF and the contact wire (its a 25 - 0 - 25kV system)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on October 09, 2017, 09:56:11 pm

A good point is made by ET on the elegance of the support arm arrangement. I hope that the ceramic insulators are up to the considerable bending moment imposed on them.

I cannot understand the mast and beam design - the lengths seem random. Some masts can support the feeder, some need extensions which are anything but standard and some require posts on the portal. This must be a nightmare for the teams that have to invent a new solution each 50m, defying efficient serial installation. The BR Mark 1 portals with their diagonal lattice (often appearing on the Series 2 system) look much neater and must be potentially  stronger than the boxy, rectangular bracing of Series 1 with its monolithic masts/stanchions and clamps.

The Enhancements Delivery Plan document of September does however read a little more optimistically about electrification, if you move the CPx's along, with Stalybridge still in and Midland Bi-mode operation spoken as from "Market Harborough/Kettering", i.e over the Desborough hump.

OTC




Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on October 10, 2017, 12:23:41 pm

The Enhancements Delivery Plan document of September does however read a little more optimistically about electrification, if you move the CPx's along, with Stalybridge still in and Midland Bi-mode operation spoken as from "Market Harborough/Kettering", i.e over the Desborough hump.

OTC


AIUI, Stalybridge has to be in, as it is where the new grid connection is, unless someone wants to invest in a very long extension cable ;-)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on October 10, 2017, 01:34:01 pm
AIUI, Stalybridge has to be in, as it is where the new grid connection is, unless someone wants to invest in a very long extension cable ;-)

I think the "extension lead" is needed anyway as the main supply point at the trackside is to be at Ordsall Lane in the centre of Manchester. Otherwise a suicidal pidgeon from Ashton can take out most of Manchester's services. (We'll have similar "leads" from Melksham and Bramley.) The actual GSP is, I believe the switching/transformer compound of the former Heyrod power station. This strongly favours continuing the wires Eastwards to Yorkshire.  It seems that this also supplies most of Manchester's commercial and residential consumers. No pidgeons, please.

The MML situation is also interesting in that the power supply for the Corby wiring is to be taken from a new compound at Braybrooke, Market Harborough, where the 400kV line crosses, suggesting that MH may be the termination. This would also certainly feed to Leicester. The other two MML feeds are proposed for Kegworth (i.e Ratcliffe Power Station site) and Hasland (from Chesterfield NG Substation). I suspect that the key to future electrification may lie in the ease of connection to the juice. The Braybrooke GSP will be the most expensive, hence the one to get installed quick!

As always I sit at ET's feet in these matters.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on October 10, 2017, 09:27:27 pm
AIUI, Stalybridge has to be in, as it is where the new grid connection is, unless someone wants to invest in a very long extension cable ;-)

I think the "extension lead" is needed anyway as the main supply point at the trackside is to be at Ordsall Lane in the centre of Manchester. Otherwise a suicidal pidgeon from Ashton can take out most of Manchester's services. (We'll have similar "leads" from Melksham and Bramley.) The actual GSP is, I believe the switching/transformer compound of the former Heyrod power station. This strongly favours continuing the wires Eastwards to Yorkshire.  It seems that this also supplies most of Manchester's commercial and residential consumers. No pidgeons, please.

The MML situation is also interesting in that the power supply for the Corby wiring is to be taken from a new compound at Braybrooke, Market Harborough, where the 400kV line crosses, suggesting that MH may be the termination. This would also certainly feed to Leicester. The other two MML feeds are proposed for Kegworth (i.e Ratcliffe Power Station site) and Hasland (from Chesterfield NG Substation). I suspect that the key to future electrification may lie in the ease of connection to the juice. The Braybrooke GSP will be the most expensive, hence the one to get installed quick!

As always I sit at ET's feet in these matters.

OTC

We have a National Grid, in the process of upgrade if the money doesn't run out. That gives us the country-wide equivalent of a ring main, spreading the feed from power stations and the demand from consumers to even out the blips. That should give us the ability to electrify practically any route, especially as you see pylons following most main rail lines. The bigger problem will be that only around 40% of the country's energy use is by electricity. Transport - including rail - remains predominantly powered by fossil fuels, as are home heating, cooking, and industry.

ET and II will agree that the eventual solution will be all transport powered by electricity. To achieve that, we need a lot more capacity for the reliable and predictable generation of electricity. Hooking it up to the mains is a minor issue compared to that (Melksham is particularly favoured in this respect).

Quote
No pidgeons, please.

That nearly got me saying I would chase them away in my "Magimix belong Jesus".


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on October 11, 2017, 08:05:27 am
Quote
Transport - including rail - remains predominantly powered by fossil......
Much like this forum then  :)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: trainer on October 11, 2017, 10:42:34 pm
Quote
Transport - including rail - remains predominantly powered by fossil......
Much like this forum then  :)

How very dare you, sir! I think wind power is more appropriate, especially in my case.  (It's the fibre in the diet that does it.)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 12, 2017, 06:50:14 am
(We'll have similar "leads" from Melksham and Bramley.)

And questions asked as to why the leads have been dug across fields not strung up above the line!!

The one on the right is Mk3 but it like its either in a station or a depot

f.y.i. both at stations - Didcot and Motherwell. (I tend not to walk along the track into the countryside to take pics!  :D )


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 12, 2017, 07:55:02 am

A good point is made by ET on the elegance of the support arm arrangement. I hope that the ceramic insulators are up to the considerable bending moment imposed on them.

OTC

Yes some types were design for that others designed for compression, its in part why they are so heavy!!!  >:(

AIUI, Stalybridge has to be in, as it is where the new grid connection is, unless someone wants to invest in a very long extension cable ;-)

I think the "extension lead" is needed anyway as the main supply point at the trackside is to be at Ordsall Lane in the centre of Manchester. Otherwise a suicidal pidgeon from Ashton can take out most of Manchester's services. (We'll have similar "leads" from Melksham and Bramley.) The actual GSP is, I believe the switching/transformer compound of the former Heyrod power station. This strongly favours continuing the wires Eastwards to Yorkshire.  It seems that this also supplies most of Manchester's commercial and residential consumers. No pidgeons, please.

The MML situation is also interesting in that the power supply for the Corby wiring is to be taken from a new compound at Braybrooke, Market Harborough, where the 400kV line crosses, suggesting that MH may be the termination. This would also certainly feed to Leicester. The other two MML feeds are proposed for Kegworth (i.e Ratcliffe Power Station site) and Hasland (from Chesterfield NG Substation). I suspect that the key to future electrification may lie in the ease of connection to the juice. The Braybrooke GSP will be the most expensive, hence the one to get installed quick!

As always I sit at ET's feet in these matters.

OTC

There are a number of complicating factors in how a Grid feed is got to the railway. Generally we (the railway) like the 400kV Grid site to be at least 1km from the railway to reduce the risk of imported touch potentials onto the railway during a grid fault.  Grid site can exceed 1700volts where as the railway is 645 volts


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 01, 2017, 11:11:06 am
This NR video shows the current state of electrification.  Enjoy the ride......
https://youtu.be/OOAqWW-KXrM


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 01, 2017, 01:02:45 pm
Couple of things from this month's Railway Magazine:

1. A letter from a reader who was relieved that, with the cancellation of electrification, Bath will be spared the fate of have OHLE strung across it (Wonder how they'd feel if someone suggested digging up the railway and replacing it with Georgian wildflower meadows?)

2. A report that according to them as know, IETs on diesel power are about 15km/h slower at balancing speed than HSTs. Marvellous.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 01, 2017, 02:53:33 pm
2. A report that according to them as know, IETs on diesel power are about 15km/h slower at balancing speed than HSTs. Marvellous.

If the faster high speed sections are electrified how much difference does this make?

Let's take a journey of 305 miles that takes 5 hours and 5 minutes (conveniently, an average of exactly 60 m.p.h.) with an HST, but where the first 173 miles are covered in 120 minutes (86 mph) and the remaining 132 miles take 185 minutes (43 mph).

Electrify the first (fast) 173 miles ... big gains from electrification.  And you will probably never reach balancing speed in those final 132 miles so it really doesn't matter.   

Isn't that the sort of plans they have?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 01, 2017, 03:16:20 pm
What is "balancing speed" in this context? A cursory search threw up a definition relating to electric traction
Quote
Righto re "balance (or balancing) speed" for any piece of propelled rolling stock powered with electric motors.

Balance speed means the fastest the car or locomotive can move without adding horsepower and/or reconfiguring the traction motor circuits. That's why a unit, a GP9 for example, will not be able to reach full maximum speed if it cannot make transition from series-parallel to parallel circuits.
and variations on that. So basically maximum speed as we'd normally understand it. Presumably same thing for diesel?
https://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?11,1289044


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chrisr_75 on November 01, 2017, 03:23:09 pm
What is "balancing speed" in this context? A cursory search threw up a definition relating to electric traction
Quote
Righto re "balance (or balancing) speed" for any piece of propelled rolling stock powered with electric motors.

Balance speed means the fastest the car or locomotive can move without adding horsepower and/or reconfiguring the traction motor circuits. That's why a unit, a GP9 for example, will not be able to reach full maximum speed if it cannot make transition from series-parallel to parallel circuits.
and variations on that. So basically maximum speed as we'd normally understand it. Presumably same thing for diesel?
https://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?11,1289044

My understanding was that it was the steady speed that was attainable up a gradient of a certain slope whilst the unit was producing its maximum continuous tractive effort. Presumably also with ideal railhead conditions.

I could be completely wrong of course  :)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 01, 2017, 03:31:28 pm
That sounds like a sensible definition. But it could be completely wrong!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Tim on November 01, 2017, 04:41:07 pm
2. A report that according to them as know, IETs on diesel power are about 15km/h slower at balancing speed than HSTs. Marvellous.

If the faster high speed sections are electrified how much difference does this make?

Let's take a journey of 305 miles that takes 5 hours and 5 minutes (conveniently, an average of exactly 60 m.p.h.) with an HST, but where the first 173 miles are covered in 120 minutes (86 mph) and the remaining 132 miles take 185 minutes (43 mph).

Electrify the first (fast) 173 miles ... big gains from electrification.  And you will probably never reach balancing speed in those final 132 miles so it really doesn't matter.   

Isn't that the sort of plans they have?

Nice reasoning.  But the other advantages of electric are better acceleration, regenerative braking and lower air pollution.  It could be argued that the best bits to electrify are the approaches to the stations in order to reduce urban air pollution, get the trains up to speed and away from the stations quickly and allow energy recovery on deceleration to the station.  The gaps in OLE might be best left out in the countryside.   


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 01, 2017, 04:50:47 pm
According to The RM (Nov 2017, p7 'Electric good: Diesel bad'):

Quote
Diesel performance from the pair of Class 800 five-car units was below that of an average IC125...

Hitachi personnel confirmed all engines were working and set to full power. Computer modelling... predicts a balancing speed of 118mph on the level in these conditions.

Quote
...spot speeds such as 90mph into Box Tunnel and 83mph coming out were around 10mph shy of an HST. This was worse at the top of the 1-in-100 climb from Dauntsey, where an HST minimum speed would be around 110mph, and the Class 800 units could only manage 91mph.

Anyone remember 'Club 140' (https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/hst-fast-running.86511/)?

Edit: Class 800, not 900!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 01, 2017, 05:05:51 pm
Club 140, speed is free,
Fun and sunshine, there's enough for everyone,
All that's missing is the speed,
But don't worry, you can make up time!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Tim on November 01, 2017, 05:11:24 pm
Do we know for sure that Chippenham to Temple Meads electrification has been cancelled? As I understand it the work has merely been pushed to the next control period and it is only Cardiff-Swansea which has actually been canned. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on November 01, 2017, 05:41:54 pm
Club 140, speed is free,
Fun and sunshine, there's enough for everyone,
All that's missing is the speed,
But don't worry, you can make up time!


WHAM  BAM you are giving your age away  and mine come too think of it !.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chrisr_75 on November 01, 2017, 06:07:50 pm
Club 140, speed is free,
Fun and sunshine, there's enough for everyone,
All that's missing is the speed,
But don't worry, you can make up time!


WHAM  BAM you are giving your age away  and mine come too think of it !.

I suspect speed was most certainly not missing where that particular group are/were concerned...!  ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 01, 2017, 06:27:02 pm
Nice reasoning.  But the other advantages of electric are better acceleration, regenerative braking and lower air pollution.  It could be argued that the best bits to electrify are the approaches to the stations in order to reduce urban air pollution, get the trains up to speed and away from the stations quickly and allow energy recovery on deceleration to the station.  The gaps in OLE might be best left out in the countryside.   

I returned from Blackpool yesterday, where electrification is well under way between Blackpool North and Preston. The line shuts next week for 4 months to finish the job! The benefit was plain to see at Preston. My seat was in the second carriage from the rear in an 11-car Pendolino, and it felt as though we were up to 60 mph by the time I passed the end of the platform.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: hassaanhc on November 01, 2017, 11:47:24 pm
2. A report that according to them as know, IETs on diesel power are about 15km/h slower at balancing speed than HSTs. Marvellous.

If the faster high speed sections are electrified how much difference does this make?

Let's take a journey of 305 miles that takes 5 hours and 5 minutes (conveniently, an average of exactly 60 m.p.h.) with an HST, but where the first 173 miles are covered in 120 minutes (86 mph) and the remaining 132 miles take 185 minutes (43 mph).

Electrify the first (fast) 173 miles ... big gains from electrification.  And you will probably never reach balancing speed in those final 132 miles so it really doesn't matter.   

Isn't that the sort of plans they have?

Nice reasoning.  But the other advantages of electric are better acceleration, regenerative braking and lower air pollution.  It could be argued that the best bits to electrify are the approaches to the stations in order to reduce urban air pollution, get the trains up to speed and away from the stations quickly and allow energy recovery on deceleration to the station.  The gaps in OLE might be best left out in the countryside.   
Class 387 acceleration is lethal, and I thought 360s were fast! On departing Maidenhead the 387s can already be at 90mph by the time they pass Taplow, also departing Slough they can be at 90 before Langley. A 165 or 166 would be in the 60-70mph region. In January my brother's usual morning train from Southall to Reading will gain more stops yet be a minute faster!

My usual journey (between Southall and Paddington) means I have more chance of getting an EMU rather than a DMU. Whenever I get a DMU after multiple EMU journeys I'm always surprised by how slow they are :P. They do manage to get to 70mph between Paddington/Ealing Broadway/Southall but actually feel slower than a EMU doing a lower speed due to the crap acceleration. And of course normal passengers notice the noise difference too. Back in July we had guests and they kept getting EMUs to/from Paddington, but the first time we got a DMU to Reading they noticed it was an old train and commented on it.

I remember Crossrail promoting that Paddington to Southall will be a minimum of 12 minutes once the project is complete. However, Heathrow Connect services on Sundays (only calling at Ealing Broadway on the way) are already booked to take that long in the down direction! The GWR DMUs are booked to take 14 minutes.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: WelshBluebird on November 02, 2017, 09:44:24 am
Do we know for sure that Chippenham to Temple Meads electrification has been cancelled? As I understand it the work has merely been pushed to the next control period and it is only Cardiff-Swansea which has actually been canned. 

Officially I believe that is still the case.

But after seeing how slow some of the progress has been, the cancellation of Cardiff-Swansea and the talk coming from government regarding electrification and bi-modes - many of us are very skeptical! 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 02, 2017, 09:49:01 am
Having seen this:

This NR video shows the current state of electrification.  Enjoy the ride......
https://youtu.be/OOAqWW-KXrM


I am rather taken aback by the sheer quantity of ironmongery involved. You can see where the money went.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 02, 2017, 03:45:57 pm
Club 140, speed is free,
Fun and sunshine, there's enough for everyone,
All that's missing is the speed,
But don't worry, you can make up time!


WHAM  BAM you are giving your age away  and mine come too think of it !.
Wham! Bam!
I am
An engine driver
Volts or no volts
You can't tell me that I'm not!

<retires, gracelessly>


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bobm on November 08, 2017, 07:16:52 am
Had to post this for the headline if nothing else.

From the Swindon Advertiser (http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/15643676.Cracked_toilet_bowl_blamed_on_Network_Rail_piling/?ref=mr&lp=4)

Quote
Cracked toilet bowl blamed on Network Rail piling

A FED-UP Stratton Road resident has suggested Network Rail should be using less disruptive piling methods in its engineering work to upgrade the London to Bristol line.
Residents have complained for months that their sleep is being disturbed as piles are driven deep into the ground to provide a stable base for pylons needed for the electrification of the route.

Edward Browning said: “It is not necessary. I have had my toilet pan cracked and it leaked on to the floor. The flashing on the front bedroom window was shaken off at the same time as the pile driving was happening.

Continues.....


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Tim on November 08, 2017, 09:14:46 am
avoiding a joke about piles.... has people's sleep really be disturbed for months?  Even at NR speed they should have moved off from a particular location after a few nights. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 08, 2017, 09:30:22 am
avoiding a joke about piles.... has people's sleep really be disturbed for months?  Even at NR speed they should have moved off from a particular location after a few nights. 

There will be a lot more ironmongery at the end of Swindon station than for a stretch of plain line. There are all the extra wires needed for overlaps and switching above the points, and each of those terminations of wire runs needs an upright with a stay.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 08, 2017, 06:05:35 pm
Had to post this for the headline if nothing else.

From the Swindon Advertiser (http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/15643676.Cracked_toilet_bowl_blamed_on_Network_Rail_piling/?ref=mr&lp=4)

Quote
Cracked toilet bowl blamed on Network Rail piling

Edward Browning said: “It is not necessary. I have had my toilet pan cracked and it leaked on to the floor.

I heard BTP called, but found they had nothing to go on...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chuffed on November 08, 2017, 06:10:21 pm
I suppose Mr Browning was lucky he didn't find a flash in the pan....tograph. That should stop the  diggers and/or sniggers


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on November 09, 2017, 09:42:57 am
On a bustitution last night - Reading to Thatcham just after midnight. Noticed an engineering train at work near Midgham.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: NickF on November 09, 2017, 03:52:09 pm
Had to post this for the headline if nothing else.

From the Swindon Advertiser (http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/15643676.Cracked_toilet_bowl_blamed_on_Network_Rail_piling/?ref=mr&lp=4)

Quote
Cracked toilet bowl blamed on Network Rail piling

A FED-UP Stratton Road resident has suggested Network Rail should be using less disruptive piling methods in its engineering work to upgrade the London to Bristol line.
Residents have complained for months that their sleep is being disturbed as piles are driven deep into the ground to provide a stable base for pylons needed for the electrification of the route.

Edward Browning said: “It is not necessary. I have had my toilet pan cracked and it leaked on to the floor. The flashing on the front bedroom window was shaken off at the same time as the pile driving was happening.

Continues.....


Well it sounds like someone is taking the p**s


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on November 09, 2017, 03:57:12 pm
No complaints as yet then of cows yielding sour milk, hens ceasing to lay, or horses being frightened (before becoming extinct)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on November 09, 2017, 07:11:25 pm
Class 387 and a Class 800 on AC did test runs on Saturday night between Slough and Didcot.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on November 10, 2017, 08:36:09 am
Class 387 and a Class 800 on AC did test runs on Saturday night between Slough and Didcot.

800 002 has made a number of runs this week between North Pole and Didcot on AC throughout. Passed it yesterday running on the down relief near Twyford while on 800 005 heading towards Padd (on diesel up to Maidenhead!)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on November 10, 2017, 09:26:47 am
Quote
On a bustitution last night - Reading to Thatcham just after midnight. Noticed an engineering train at work near Midgham.

Updating my own post - this morning in daylight, quite a lot of metal dangly bits have appeared in the last few days at various points between Aldermaston and Thatcham. Also, some more uprights near to the M4 at Theale, which was one of the remaining gaps with no metalwork.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 10, 2017, 10:32:08 am
Class 387 and a Class 800 on AC did test runs on Saturday night between Slough and Didcot.

800 002 has made a number of runs this week between North Pole and Didcot on AC throughout. Passed it yesterday running on the down relief near Twyford while on 800 005 heading towards Padd (on diesel up to Maidenhead!)

There are no more Sunday morning closures, so presumably they can now do all their testing by running trains. I imagine soon they will want to run enough trains to fully load the system, and see what it does.

Or can they? I'm still puzzled about where and how much power can be fed in at Reading ATFS. There is no National Grid site at Reading, and the intended feed from Bramley hasn't been built. (Yet.) Plan B was a longer feeder along the track from Didcot; I'm 99% sure that is not going to happen. So presumably it has a temporary feed from SSEN at 132 kV. Their nearest "bulk supply point" is at the back of their offices in Vastern Road, less than 1 km away, but I doubt that could supply the full rated power of the ATFS.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 10, 2017, 10:33:51 am
Sounds like a question for ‘Electric Train’...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on November 10, 2017, 12:16:04 pm
Surely power isn't 'fed in' from the Grid at Reading ATFS, it comes along the route (ie the traction OHLE and ATF) from Didcot. 

AIUI Kensal Green feeds as far as Maidenhead MPATS, just west of the station.  From the Reading side of the Maidenhead MPATS to (somewhere between Didcot and Thingley) is fed from Didcot.   There are only 4 national grid supply points on the whole route, Kensal Green, Didcot, Thingley (Melksham) and somewhere in Wales.

As described by Electric train here a couple of years ago:  http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=15735.msg176211#msg176211

I don't think Bramley is an absolute necessity yet, it is a sort of belt and braces for when Newbury and Basingstoke are added into the whole system.

PS I have now checked the Sep 17 NR enhancement plan and the "Reading Independent feeder" is about levels of redundancy in the event of failures elsewhere.  It is a separate project for completion during CP6 and will either come from Bramley or along the track (separately) from Didcot.

Paul

A MPATS is a "mid point autotransformer feeder site", it is the limits of normal feeding, but there is switchgear to allow cross feeding under reversionary conditions.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 10, 2017, 06:53:37 pm
I don't think Bramley is an absolute necessity yet, it is a sort of belt and braces for when Newbury and Basingstoke are added into the whole system.
That's really what I was getting at - the "standard design" does allow for any one feed point to be lost with little or no effect, but how big an issue is it to leave one out and operate permanently in this reversionary mode? And is that no effect, or just a little, or an important power contraint? Didcot-Kensal is significantly further than the normal upper limit of 60 km between feed points, and it's not to be lightly  used.

The Bramley feed point was a late addition, but I think that was based on the realisation that one was needed even if the grid wasn't very helpfully arranged. The full design had an ATFS at Bramley as well as a high-level feeder along the line, but no sooner had that been planned than that stretch of OLE was deferred and may not be undeferred.

So if the "F" in "Reading ATFS" is silent, as in MPATS, the heavily-used section from Reading to Maidenhead is always fed at the end of another section. And when Reading-Newbury is added, that has no feed point, so gets fed the same way..

There is also a loss of feed diversity while the OLE through Bath and Bristol is missing. Thingley ATFS should feed to Bristol Parkway, and even on to Cardiff, by both routes. There is (or was) to be another high-level feeder along the track from Thingley to an ATFS at Royal Wootton Basset - is there any sign of that? That was explained as needed to feed the line between Wales and Swindon when the B&H is turned off. You can see the concern over only feeding a main line by power along another line (branch or branch main).

No doubt DfT will now be telling NR that backup power is another luxury not needed if trains have on-board power at the push of a button. But that logic doesn't hold east of Didcot (or eventually Swindon) and Newbury, where the 387's run.

Quote
A MPATS is a "mid point autotransformer feeder site", it is the limits of normal feeding, but there is switchgear to allow cross feeding under reversionary conditions.

"Mid Point Autotransformer Site" does seem to be the standard interpretation, keeping the "F" for Feeder only for sites that feed in external power. Of course "feeder" does, confusingly, have other uses, as in ATF.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 10, 2017, 07:10:12 pm
On my way by car along the M4 twixt Bath and Swindon, I saw actual wires in place around RWB. Fantastic - they are going through with it after all! Not only that, Bristol Temple Meads seems hopeful in CP6 after all.

"Mid Point Autotransformer Site" does seem to be the standard interpretation, keeping the "F" for Feeder only for sites that feed in external power. Of course "feeder" does, confusingly, have other uses, as in ATF.

WTF?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on November 10, 2017, 07:46:14 pm
I saw actual wires in place around RWB. Fantastic - they are going through with it after all!

RWB area wiring was never in doubt, was it? Beyond Thingley was where it all got a bit questionable...





Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on November 10, 2017, 09:19:57 pm
I don't think Bramley is an absolute necessity yet, it is a sort of belt and braces for when Newbury and Basingstoke are added into the whole system.
That's really what I was getting at - the "standard design" does allow for any one feed point to be lost with little or no effect, but how big an issue is it to leave one out and operate permanently in this reversionary mode? And is that no effect, or just a little, or an important power contraint? Didcot-Kensal is significantly further than the normal upper limit of 60 km between feed points, and it's not to be lightly  used.

The whole advantage of the ATF system is to allow grid feeders as far apart as Kensal and Didcot, isn't it?   Lets say that 60 km is the upper limit of a conventionally fed system - (said to be 40 - 60 km between grid connections in an online resource). 

The addition of the ATF then allows one of 3 things:
Additional distance been grid feeders for the same power drawn,
Or additional power draw (less volt drop) for the same distance between supply points,
Or a combination of the two.

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 10, 2017, 11:34:03 pm
The whole advantage of the ATF system is to allow grid feeders as far apart as Kensal and Didcot, isn't it?   Lets say that 60 km is the upper limit of a conventionally fed system - (said to be 40 - 60 km between grid connections in an online resource). 

The addition of the ATF then allows one of 3 things:
Additional distance been grid feeders for the same power drawn,
Or additional power draw (less volt drop) for the same distance between supply points,
Or a combination of the two.

Paul

You're right, that 60 km was for "classic" systems, so not really the appropriate value. But in the area around Reading I would expect most of the benefit of AT feeding to be used up in the high traffic load, so not available for extra distance (and Kensal-Didcot is 80 km).  However, that's off the end of my thumb - you'd need to do the right sums to really know.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 11, 2017, 09:15:27 pm
RWB area wiring was never in doubt, was it? Beyond Thingley was where it all got a bit questionable...

Never was in doubt - I mention it purely as a matter of record of progress.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 12, 2017, 08:57:11 am
Class 387 and a Class 800 on AC did test runs on Saturday night between Slough and Didcot.

800 002 has made a number of runs this week between North Pole and Didcot on AC throughout. Passed it yesterday running on the down relief near Twyford while on 800 005 heading towards Padd (on diesel up to Maidenhead!)

There are no more Sunday morning closures, so presumably they can now do all their testing by running trains. I imagine soon they will want to run enough trains to fully load the system, and see what it does.

Or can they? I'm still puzzled about where and how much power can be fed in at Reading ATFS. There is no National Grid site at Reading, and the intended feed from Bramley hasn't been built. (Yet.) Plan B was a longer feeder along the track from Didcot; I'm 99% sure that is not going to happen. So presumably it has a temporary feed from SSEN at 132 kV. Their nearest "bulk supply point" is at the back of their offices in Vastern Road, less than 1 km away, but I doubt that could supply the full rated power of the ATFS.

I doubt they will fully load the system, sufficient loading will be done to check Vl-Vt (Voltage longitudinal - Voltage transverse) basically the interference on telecoms circuits, and any touch potentials at public areas also to check the stability and direction of the (power) protection.

Reading depot has always been a concern regards power in the event of an all line isolation is required between it and Didcot, I believe feeding has been designed such that Reading can be kept alive from Kensal Green.  As far as I am aware there are no plans to bring in a feed from Reading Grid, it just does not have the capacity, indeed the 33kV feed to Reading third rail substation generally only feeds a couple of subs on the network due to capacity at the Grid.  Even a standby supply would need to be in the order of 10MVA


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 18, 2017, 11:08:45 am
In answering questions elsewhere I came across http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/sites/default/files/sitedocuments/Planning-and-Building-Control/Planning/nr_a_guide_to_overhead_electrification.pdf ... which is I suspect a general Network Rail guide mirrored by Bath and North East Somerset.   Perhaps already mentioned here in the past - but worth repeating even if it has been as it seems like a useful guide ...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 18, 2017, 11:32:10 am
In answering questions elsewhere I came across http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/sites/default/files/sitedocuments/Planning-and-Building-Control/Planning/nr_a_guide_to_overhead_electrification.pdf ... which is I suspect a general Network Rail guide mirrored by Bath and North East Somerset.   Perhaps already mentioned here in the past - but worth repeating even if it has been as it seems like a useful guide ...

Indeed I did, last year: http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=5066.msg200603#msg200603 (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=5066.msg200603#msg200603)

Note that the much-derided (for good reasons) forum search facility seems to work quite well on little-used text strings in a link - even if that string is invisible.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Chris from Nailsea on November 18, 2017, 09:20:47 pm
Note that the much-derided (for good reasons) forum search facility seems to work quite well on little-used text strings in a link - even if that string is invisible.

Yes, that's how I still manage to dredge up various historic posts / information - with some determined digging!  ;) :D ;D



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: 4064ReadingAbbey on November 19, 2017, 02:33:48 pm
In answering questions elsewhere I came across http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/sites/default/files/sitedocuments/Planning-and-Building-Control/Planning/nr_a_guide_to_overhead_electrification.pdf ... which is I suspect a general Network Rail guide mirrored by Bath and North East Somerset.   Perhaps already mentioned here in the past - but worth repeating even if it has been as it seems like a useful guide ...
A better guide is to be found here: http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/OLE/.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 19, 2017, 05:02:14 pm
Apparently Bramley Grid supply is going to built in CP6 to the full spec


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: CyclingSid on November 20, 2017, 03:56:34 pm
A question, from someone who probably does not understand the difference between Network Rail and National Grid supply. You say that Reading has no or unsuitable grid supply. So what is the site to the west of the Reading - Basingstoke line just south of the Kennet & Avon Canal, and probably not far from where Reading Green Park station will be it is known as Reading Power Station, although doesn't look like one to me.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 20, 2017, 04:50:40 pm
A question, from someone who probably does not understand the difference between Network Rail and National Grid supply. You say that Reading has no or unsuitable grid supply. So what is the site to the west of the Reading - Basingstoke line just south of the Kennet & Avon Canal, and probably not far from where Reading Green Park station will be it is known as Reading Power Station, although doesn't look like one to me.

That's Burghfield Bulk Supply Point (BSP) - operated by the distribution network operator (DNO) which is Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN). It takes in 132 kV from a National Grid Grid Supply Point, but from Fleet GSP, not Bramley, and supplies about 70 MW at 33 kV. One of the next-level substations it supplies is on Burghfield road, converting to 11 kV and supplying up to 9 MW. Oddly, there's another one closer, a few yards south and on the other side of the railway - but it's fed from Thatcham BSP!

Network Rail want too much power to place as a single-phase load on one of these local stations, hence the insistence on taking power direct off the grid. (Though there is a site somewhere on the Crossrail route that draws power from a DNO, though I'm not sure where.)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on November 20, 2017, 05:11:19 pm
Looks like there's been some more piling in the Southcote Junction area recently.

The gaps in metalwork between there are Theale are also narrowing slowly but surely.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on November 20, 2017, 05:46:04 pm
A question, from someone who probably does not understand the difference between Network Rail and National Grid supply. You say that Reading has no or unsuitable grid supply. So what is the site to the west of the Reading - Basingstoke line just south of the Kennet & Avon Canal, and probably not far from where Reading Green Park station will be it is known as Reading Power Station, although doesn't look like one to me.

That's Burghfield Bulk Supply Point (BSP) - operated by the distribution network operator (DNO) which is Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN). It takes in 132 kV from a National Grid Grid Supply Point, but from Fleet GSP, not Bramley, and supplies about 70 MW at 33 kV. One of the next-level substations it supplies is on Burghfield road, converting to 11 kV and supplying up to 9 MW. Oddly, there's another one closer, a few yards south and on the other side of the railway - but it's fed from Thatcham BSP!

Network Rail want too much power to place as a single-phase load on one of these local stations, hence the insistence on taking power direct off the grid. (Though there is a site somewhere on the Crossrail route that draws power from a DNO, though I'm not sure where.)

Yes, AC railway traction loads are among the most challenging for a grid system to supply.
Supplying say 20MW for a new industrial and residential area is simple by comparison.
Railway traction demand is intermittent, varying from zero to several dozen MW, from one minute to the next. Supplying a steady or slowly varying load is easy, but a rapidly altering load causes voltage fluctuations to other customers unless supplied at higher voltages where the load is greater and the railway traction load is therefore a smaller percentage.

Or put simply, adding a variable 20MW traction load to a 30MW circuit at 33KV would likely cause excessive voltage fluctuations. Adding the same 20MW traction load to a high voltage grid feeder point with an existing load of 500MW is probably of no consequence.
The fact that AC traction supplies are unavoidably single phase makes it worse.

Decades ago, the inability to supply large, single phase, and intermittent traction loads often resulted in the continuation of steam or diesel power when electrification would otherwise been attractive.

DC traction has the merit that it presents a balanced 3 phase load, but still large and intermittent.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 20, 2017, 08:43:08 pm
DC traction has the merit that it presents a balanced 3 phase load, but still large and intermittent.

DC traction rectifiers produce third, seventh and eleventh harmonic distortion at quit high levels, often NR has its own 33kV transformer at GSP's.  The harmonics are next to impossible to filter out due to the energy levels.  NR in Southeast London is currently building 2 new supply feeders from 2 140MV 275/33kV transformers NR are the sole user of these.

New 25kV electrification and most up grades go for 400kV connection, the single phase loading causes negative phase sequence in the "neutral" of the 3 phase system, when 132kV was the National Grid in the 50, 60, 70s the negative phase sequence could be lived with also train loads were smaller.

Bramley will have been selected by National Grid as their best option that suited NR requirements, based on the space available for switchgear, transformers and distance from the railway; approx. min of 1km is preferred to ensure the Grids rise of earth potential under 400kV (1750V) does not get exported to the railway which has a max rise of earth potential of 645V.  At locations like Kensal Green the earthing point of the 25-0-25 kV has to be moved for the normal place at the transformer to the "0" connection in the NR feeder station, this adds complexity to the protection system.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Chris from Nailsea on November 20, 2017, 08:46:11 pm
Exactly what I was about to say.  :-X



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 20, 2017, 10:49:34 pm
Exactly what I was about to say.  :-X

Me too! :-X

But seriously, I am indebted to II, ET, broadgage and others for these snippets. I have some basic understanding of electricity, and if I read their posts on these technical matters often enough, sometimes with a little supplementary reading, the odd scale falls from my eye. Fascinating stuff!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 20, 2017, 11:32:52 pm
At locations like Kensal Green the earthing point of the 25-0-25 kV has to be moved for the normal place at the transformer to the "0" connection in the NR feeder station, this adds complexity to the protection system.

I'm a bit surprised by that. After all, the grid's literally next door - the other side of the fence - and a lot closer to the feeder site than the connection to the railway is.

Google Earth's friends in high places have visited all these OLE sites from Didcot eastwards in the last six months, so if you don't want to go looking for them by train there's an easier way. Some are not finished in the pictures, or indeed in real life, and I'm not sure Westbourne Park has even been started. But here are Didcot and Reading. Pretty, aren't they?

Didcot has two ATs, and a load of switchgear. Next door there's a bit more switchgear at the end of the input cables (buried) from the two 400/50 kV transformers at the grid end. They are in the compound at the old power station, now taking power in from the new station instead. It's not a supply point - Didcot's power is supplied from Cowley, via Drayton.

Reading has three ATs, presumably for each route out (east, west, south). Terminating the input from Bramley will need a new corral - unsurprisingly not built yet. But why is there no space provided for a third AT at Didcot for the line to Oxford? Hmm.

You can also see that vanilla ATSs have one AT each on the GW electrification, but two on the Crossrail
part inwards of Maidenhead. The MPATS at Maidenhead has three - since it is in effect an ATS for the line each side.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ray951 on November 21, 2017, 10:17:30 am
Reading has three ATs, presumably for each route out (east, west, south). Terminating the input from Bramley will need a new corral - unsurprisingly not built yet. But why is there no space provided for a third AT at Didcot for the line to Oxford? Hmm.

Could the feed for the Didcot - Oxford line be the electrical substation at Radley?

I have always been of the opinion that unless NR started to dismantle this substation then electrification to Oxford is going to happen, this is probably hopelessly naive.

In other news I notice they have started to put up electrification masts around Didcot East curve.




Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 21, 2017, 10:53:07 am
Could the feed for the Didcot - Oxford line be the electrical substation at Radley?

I have always been of the opinion that unless NR started to dismantle this substation then electrification to Oxford is going to happen, this is probably hopelessly naive.

In other news I notice they have started to put up electrification masts around Didcot East curve.

Radley gets a plain ATS - compare it with the one at Cholsey; it's almost identical. I had not realied that had been, or so it seems, finished. There is also to be a SATS at Oxford, though I can't see that one's been built  and I don't know where it would be if it had been. So, no feed in at either - all the power comes from Didcot (called Foxhall Junction in the planning documents).

I always thought electrification to Oxford looked like a genuine deferral. Assuming that bringing those elements back into the programme is down to NR making a case, they must want that enough to put it top of their CP6 TTD list.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 21, 2017, 11:07:42 am
The SATS at Oxford hasn’t been built yet, but the ATS at Radley looks to be finished.  Oxford’s main problem is the imminent station rebuild, but with the definition of imminent in the railway dictionary being ‘might still be 10 years away’ I think they should just plough on with it.

Signs are still promising - work on Rewley Road sidings is still incorporating provision for easy installation of OLE, and it makes a lot of sense in terms of service patterns, but it does still hang in the balance and the recent confirmation that East-West Rail won’t be electrified initially was another small blow.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 21, 2017, 07:32:27 pm
At locations like Kensal Green the earthing point of the 25-0-25 kV has to be moved for the normal place at the transformer to the "0" connection in the NR feeder station, this adds complexity to the protection system.

I'm a bit surprised by that. After all, the grid's literally next door - the other side of the fence - and a lot closer to the feeder site than the connection to the railway is.

Google Earth's friends in high places have visited all these OLE sites from Didcot eastwards in the last six months, so if you don't want to go looking for them by train there's an easier way. Some are not finished in the pictures, or indeed in real life, and I'm not sure Westbourne Park has even been started. But here are Didcot and Reading. Pretty, aren't they?

Didcot has two ATs, and a load of switchgear. Next door there's a bit more switchgear at the end of the input cables (buried) from the two 400/50 kV transformers at the grid end. They are in the compound at the old power station, now taking power in from the new station instead. It's not a supply point - Didcot's power is supplied from Cowley, via Drayton.

Reading has three ATs, presumably for each route out (east, west, south). Terminating the input from Bramley will need a new corral - unsurprisingly not built yet. But why is there no space provided for a third AT at Didcot for the line to Oxford? Hmm.

You can also see that vanilla ATSs have one AT each on the GW electrification, but two on the Crossrail
part inwards of Maidenhead. The MPATS at Maidenhead has three - since it is in effect an ATS for the line each side.

By placing the "0" or Neutral point earth connection at the NR end the secondary of the 400/25-0-25kV transformer is electrically isolated from the National Grid earth, there will be a rise in potential on NR infrastructure in the event of a 400kV fault however its is of a lower magnitude.

At Didcot there is sufficient distance between the Grid earth and NR earth for the Grid fault rise of potential to be below the 645V level.

It was all explained to me by an earthing boffin who can quite frankly bore for England on the subject  ;D

Reading has three ATs, presumably for each route out (east, west, south). Terminating the input from Bramley will need a new corral - unsurprisingly not built yet. But why is there no space provided for a third AT at Didcot for the line to Oxford? Hmm.

Could the feed for the Didcot - Oxford line be the electrical substation at Radley?

I have always been of the opinion that unless NR started to dismantle this substation then electrification to Oxford is going to happen, this is probably hopelessly naive.

In other news I notice they have started to put up electrification masts around Didcot East curve.


Didcot Oxford electrification is in CP6 and feeding Oxford from Bramley has already been taken into account


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on November 23, 2017, 06:20:52 pm
Was up on the bridge between Hambrook Lane and Stoke Gifford this afternoon just to the east of Bristol Parkway. Could see that the catenary ironwork has just about reached the bridge, within sight of Parkway. No wires yet though. Can anybody tell me if this means all the basic metal work is now in place all the way back eastwards or are there still gaps?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 23, 2017, 07:38:00 pm
There are still gaps  :) . I was in Wiltshire yesterday; I seen em.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 24, 2017, 12:58:23 am
By placing the "0" or Neutral point earth connection at the NR end the secondary of the 400/25-0-25kV transformer is electrically isolated from the National Grid earth, there will be a rise in potential on NR infrastructure in the event of a 400kV fault however its is of a lower magnitude.

At Didcot there is sufficient distance between the Grid earth and NR earth for the Grid fault rise of potential to be below the 645V level.

It was all explained to me by an earthing boffin who can quite frankly bore for England on the subject  ;D

I did find a national grid picture that showed that neutral earthed at their transformer, but also showing both stations sitting over the same buried earth mat. That might not reduce the voltage difference enough, and either way there's clearly a problem when you connect that to the earth at the railway feed point. But I know what you mean about earthing experts, even if my encounters with them have been to do with very much higher frequencies. You still see the same effect, that all earths are not equal, voltagewise, but without those scarily high currents.

That's really what struck me most about that site; how small it is. We are used to seeing NG's big toys in a compound 50 m across in the middle of a field (and so are they). At Kensal Green, those transformers are within 10 m of a public footpath - the canal towpath. Given their standard fault current (into the ground at a single point) is 63kA, and most lightning in this country is below 10 kA, I'd say that looks like a serious safety management problem.

It's all very well to read that these days the experts don't think step voltage (between your two feet, making a current flow up one leg and down the other) is a big risk, because the current has no reason to go near your heart. But you do have to know not to touch the ground with anything but a rubber-soled foot.

Maybe there are signs on the towpath saying "no walking sticks, and don't even think about those walking pole things" - and what about the poor fish?

Here's a picture of the site - the view is about 200 m across. The smaller sheds have shafts in them, as can be seen for the earlier pictures. I do hope they left enough of a raised wall around those shafts to stop the canal ever getting in, even in a serious flood.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 24, 2017, 01:03:31 am
Fancy another armchair expedition? This time to hunt for big wormholes across London?

National Grid's London Power Tunnels (http://www.energyforlondon.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Lon_Tunnels.pdf) have got a lot less publicity than Thames Water's supersewer (at least out West of London). But it is still quite impressive - while slim, it is pretty long.

I found this list  (http://www.londonpowertunnels.co.uk/accordion-and-toggles/)of the twelve shaft sites, detailed enough that you can plug them into Google Earth and go straight there.

Seagrave Road, Earls Court
Millfields Park, Hackney
Eade Road, Haringey
Seven Sisters Road, Highbury
Lough Road, Islington
Canal Way, Kensal Green
Lodge Road, St. John’s Wood
Royal College Street, St. Pancras
Armoury Way, Wandsworth
Acton Lane, Willesden
Channel Gate Road, Willesden
Riverside Road, Wimbledon
(There's a separate tunnel from Hurst to Eltham.)

You may need to hunt for the site itself, and then you'll then need to wind back time to see the holes; they are now hidden by sheds ("headhouses"). Kensal Green has two shafts (as does Hackney). I think that has to do with the tunneling itself - three tunnels meet there, from Willesden, Hackney, and Wimbledon. And Willesden had two shafts 600 m apart, one of which is now capped.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: CyclingSid on November 24, 2017, 06:00:38 pm
The comment about earthing at very much higher frequencies reminded me of Army advice. Always jump off the tailgate of a Land Rover with a high power radio installation, in case your undercarriage tries to do an impression of a gold leaf electroscope. Never tried it to see if it was true!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 24, 2017, 07:48:08 pm
Fancy another armchair expedition? This time to hunt for big wormholes across London?

National Grid's London Power Tunnels (http://www.energyforlondon.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Lon_Tunnels.pdf) have got a lot less publicity than Thames Water's supersewer (at least out West of London). But it is still quite impressive - while slim, it is pretty long.

I found this list  (http://www.londonpowertunnels.co.uk/accordion-and-toggles/)of the twelve shaft sites, detailed enough that you can plug them into Google Earth and go straight there.

Seagrave Road, Earls Court
Millfields Park, Hackney
Eade Road, Haringey
Seven Sisters Road, Highbury
Lough Road, Islington
Canal Way, Kensal Green
Lodge Road, St. John’s Wood
Royal College Street, St. Pancras
Armoury Way, Wandsworth
Acton Lane, Willesden
Channel Gate Road, Willesden
Riverside Road, Wimbledon
(There's a separate tunnel from Hurst to Eltham.)

You may need to hunt for the site itself, and then you'll then need to wind back time to see the holes; they are now hidden by sheds ("headhouses"). Kensal Green has two shafts (as does Hackney). I think that has to do with the tunneling itself - three tunnels meet there, from Willesden, Hackney, and Wimbledon. And Willesden had two shafts 600 m apart, one of which is now capped.

There are quite a few other National Grid tunnels under London that you have not mentioned that I have knowledge of but cannot say where they run between, they are mainly at 275kV a number of them 400kV; UKPN also have a series of cable tunnels at 132, 66kV, there are also some at 33 and 22kV although these tend to be less than 2m in diameter.

The head houses are vital as they contain ventilation fans to keep the cables cool and monitoring equipment


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on November 24, 2017, 08:07:17 pm

I was very surprised to see (Reply#130) the Radley ATS completed, so far north of Didcot, as I understood that the wires would only reach Appleford for the moment. Presumably the ATS is there to provide the wiring boundary as there won't be much AT demand for the time being, unless Radley becomes an "Oxford South Parkway"!

Curious,

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 24, 2017, 09:08:11 pm
I think Radley was one area they were ahead of the game on, so it had been completed before the deferral was announced.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 24, 2017, 10:14:59 pm
I think Radley was one area they were ahead of the game on, so it had been completed before the deferral was announced.

This is correct.  GWEP was unusual in that it got all its Distribution assets ordered and build to time and I believe almost to cost ..................... usually on electrification scheme Distribution is forgotten about until someone says "errrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr where's the 13amp socket to plug the train set into"  ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on November 25, 2017, 08:23:15 am
Indeed so, there is some sort of sub-station at Midgham that was built at least a year ago. OHLE metalwork now very close both side of the station, but still not through it yet.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 25, 2017, 12:36:03 pm
Indeed so, there is some sort of sub-station at Midgham that was built at least a year ago. OHLE metalwork now very close both side of the station, but still not through it yet.

That's one ATS, and Theale has another one. Newbury will get a slightly more up-market one (labelled SATS), but the work seems to have been delayed to fit in with the rebuilding on the adjoining site (the old Sterling Cables factory).

Oddly, when lasted snapped (September), Radley had its transformer while Midgham and Theale had only bare pads. Work flows in mysterious ways.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on November 25, 2017, 03:22:19 pm

This is correct.  GWEP was unusual in that it got all its Distribution assets ordered and build to time and I believe almost to cost.

So is the Oxford SATS being built also?

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on November 25, 2017, 05:14:54 pm
I expect the chaps who install switchgear and transformers etc, in the little compounds separate from but near the railway, are chuffed to bits because their work doesn't actually involve using problematic over-hyped equipment such as MPV based modular wiring trains,  and their normal access is by roads or tracks available 24/7 rather than only during railway possessions...

Paul



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 25, 2017, 07:36:01 pm
Oddly, when lasted snapped (September), Radley had its transformer while Midgham and Theale had only bare pads. Work flows in mysterious ways.

The contractor supplying and the one carrying out the distribution equipment install would have had a programme of works a number of years ago, the changes to the OLE install may have overtaken the original distribution contract, possibly more cost effective to remain on the majority of the distribution install programme


So is the Oxford SATS being built also?

OTC

I believe it could not be built until Oxford Station rebuild had reached a certain stage, its part of the reason why the wires to Oxford were taken out of the current programme, it will go in as part of the CP6 electrification to Oxford


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: gwr2006 on November 25, 2017, 09:38:04 pm
It doesn't look like Steventon will be ready any time soon and doubtful the high street bridge will even be rebuilt now before December 2018. Loco-haulage anyone?

Apparently they are looking at a temporary solution with a speed limit to achieve the deadline.

NR tweets also suggest they are lowering the track this weekend. So it looks like a combination of lowered track, minimum clearances and reduced speed to allow the gradient of the contact wire to be very steep. 

Any idea what the speed limit might be? I'm sure the villagers will be asking why that can't be a permanent solution as they are so opposed to the bridge being rebuilt. The contact wire will be steep too to obtain the clearance needed at the level crossings.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 25, 2017, 10:04:40 pm
It doesn't look like Steventon will be ready any time soon and doubtful the high street bridge will even be rebuilt now before December 2018. Loco-haulage anyone?

Apparently they are looking at a temporary solution with a speed limit to achieve the deadline.

NR tweets also suggest they are lowering the track this weekend. So it looks like a combination of lowered track, minimum clearances and reduced speed to allow the gradient of the contact wire to be very steep. 

Any idea what the speed limit might be? I'm sure the villagers will be asking why that can't be a permanent solution as they are so opposed to the bridge being rebuilt. The contact wire will be steep too to obtain the clearance needed at the level crossings.

Remembered where I found it:

http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=5066.msg220937#msg220937 (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=5066.msg220937#msg220937)

That's all I know


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: gwr2006 on November 26, 2017, 12:38:10 am
Apparently they are looking at a temporary solution with a speed limit to achieve the deadline.

NR tweets also suggest they are lowering the track this weekend. So it looks like a combination of lowered track, minimum clearances and reduced speed to allow the gradient of the contact wire to be very steep. 

Just found a letter from Network Rail to local council confirming bridge rebuilding wont happen until CP6 (i.e. after April 2019) and only then if planning consent etc. is given.  Until then a 'temporary solution' is a combination of track lowering, track slew and a speed limit of 60mph! A speed restriction like that could decimate the new IEP timetable as line speed is normally 125mph and it will seriously affect the level crossings if trains take longer to travel from the strike-in point.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rhydgaled on November 26, 2017, 05:02:20 pm
It doesn't look like Steventon will be ready any time soon and doubtful the high street bridge will even be rebuilt now before December 2018. Loco-haulage anyone?

Apparently they are looking at a temporary solution with a speed limit to achieve the deadline.

NR tweets also suggest they are lowering the track this weekend. So it looks like a combination of lowered track, minimum clearances and reduced speed to allow the gradient of the contact wire to be very steep. 

Any idea what the speed limit might be? I'm sure the villagers will be asking why that can't be a permanent solution as they are so opposed to the bridge being rebuilt. The contact wire will be steep too to obtain the clearance needed at the level crossings.
Given the opposition to rebuilding the bridge, and the fact that the OHLE will fit under it, why don't they build a link-road to the bridge and close the level crossing (at least to vehicles)? Given Network Rail / ORR seem to be quite keen on  reducing the number of level crossings, it would be pretty silly to rebuild the bridge then a few years later the level crossing gets closed anyway.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on November 26, 2017, 05:34:19 pm
Took a diversion today on my way back from the supermarket to have a nose at progress since my last nose. Nothing. My viewpoint was King Grove Farm Overbridge on the stretch from the former sites of Chipping Sodbury station and Wapley Sidings. This is usually referred to as Chipping Sodbury cutting as it runs through an area of tough limestone. It looks as if many piles have been drilled and cast which was the situation when I visited the same viewpoint after the August/September blockage of the line east of Westerleigh Junction.

A forest of uprights are visible around Westerleigh Junction itself and cantilevers and gantries have been affixed from the junction itself towards Parkway station as also has a number of cantilevers and gantries on the 'operational overlap' from the junction towards Yate. It looks as if the steelwork for the remaining uprights, cantilevers and gantries has been delivered to sites towards Rodford Bridge and dumped trackside due to the embankment slip between Rodford Bridge and the pedestrian underbridge leading from Westerleigh Common. Work is currently underway to shore up the embankment working from a compound set up by a batalion of the Orange Army from the Carrillion Regiment which I am told is likely to continue until next March. From the junction towards Parkway station I would suspect that the erection of lineside steelwork is almost complete. I noticed last time I travelled along the A432 at Coalpit Heath the uprights for the OLE has been affixed to the outside of the viaduct retaining wall lining up with the viaduct pillars, I suspect the same method of fixing has been used for the longer Winterbourne Viaduct.

Back at Westerleigh Junction I notice that west of the junction there are two sets of sturdy uprights with 4 sets of lighter uprights evenly spaced between them so I assume these are additional supports for wiring of the trailing Up Main to Down Main trailing crossover at this point. On the down side only there is a 5th lighter upright which seems to have a platform on it about contact wire level which I presume will be the home to a transformer feed to the OHL.

Cant any 'dangley bits' affixed to any of the steelwork yet.

I'll keep the forum advised of progress


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 26, 2017, 07:31:23 pm
It doesn't look like Steventon will be ready any time soon and doubtful the high street bridge will even be rebuilt now before December 2018. Loco-haulage anyone?

Apparently they are looking at a temporary solution with a speed limit to achieve the deadline.

NR tweets also suggest they are lowering the track this weekend. So it looks like a combination of lowered track, minimum clearances and reduced speed to allow the gradient of the contact wire to be very steep. 

Any idea what the speed limit might be? I'm sure the villagers will be asking why that can't be a permanent solution as they are so opposed to the bridge being rebuilt. The contact wire will be steep too to obtain the clearance needed at the level crossings.
Given the opposition to rebuilding the bridge, and the fact that the OHLE will fit under it, why don't they build a link-road to the bridge and close the level crossing (at least to vehicles)? Given Network Rail / ORR seem to be quite keen on  reducing the number of level crossings, it would be pretty silly to rebuild the bridge then a few years later the level crossing gets closed anyway.

There was a proposal to improve the unmade track to do the opposite of this as a temporary measure during the bridge works.  However if you look at the map you will see that as the solution you propose it would cut the village in two. Also remember that there are two level crossings in Steventon.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 26, 2017, 09:10:42 pm
A speed restriction like that could decimate the new IEP timetable as line speed is normally 125mph and it will seriously affect the level crossings if trains take longer to travel from the strike-in point.

So how much time would that short slow section cost, for an 800 in electric mode?

Taking the speeds as 26 and 56 m/s, the extra time during the braking (0.6 m/s2) is 13 s, and then running slower takes 20 s per km. That's not really dependent on the train's performance. The acceleration is, so using the latest modelling guessesestimates I reckon it takes 56 s for that. So, for 2.5 km at low speed that's a total of 2 minutes lost.

Out of interest, for a station stop the figures are 47 s lost to a stand, plus the dwell time, plus 125 s to accelerate. That's nearly 3 minutes before adding the dwell time. For an HST I get 47 s and 195 s - four minutes plus dwell.

In both cases, some extra allowance is needed for not braking at the theoretical braking point (at least until ERTMS arrives).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 26, 2017, 09:19:14 pm
Back at Westerleigh Junction I notice that west of the junction there are two sets of sturdy uprights with 4 sets of lighter uprights evenly spaced between them so I assume these are additional supports for wiring of the trailing Up Main to Down Main trailing crossover at this point. On the down side only there is a 5th lighter upright which seems to have a platform on it about contact wire level which I presume will be the home to a transformer feed to the OHL.

There is supposed to be an MPATS built at Westerleigh Junction, though I'm not sure quite where. That would need several post pairs, rather taller than the usual stanchions, for its connections. Judging from others, probably four pairs and then two more a few OLE spans away.,


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on November 27, 2017, 10:06:42 am
CP6 no longer exists. The end of current CP5 does.

Didn't the DfT confirm that beyond this, they would confirm project by project, up to a total spend value within each Goverment, rather than having agreed projects and spend all agreed with a defined 5-year period?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 27, 2017, 10:35:20 am
AIUI, CP6 exists as before for maintenance and renewals, but enhancements are dealt with on a case by case basis.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 27, 2017, 10:37:46 am
CP6 no longer exists. The end of current CP5 does.

Didn't the DfT confirm that beyond this, they would confirm project by project, up to a total spend value within each Goverment, rather than having agreed projects and spend all agreed with a defined 5-year period?

CP6 does still exist, as a budgeting framework for maintenance and renewals. If you look under the SoFA it says:
Quote
In line with the HLOS, the level of expenditure is focused on and provides for the operations, maintenance and renewal of the existing railway over CP6.2 The level of expenditure makes some provision for the funding of enhancements. However, the Secretary of State expects decisions regarding specific enhancements to be dealt with separately, building on the principles set out in the ‘Memorandum of Understanding between Department for Transport and Network Rail on rail enhancements,’3 and this statement makes no commitments to specific enhancements.

That doesn't even attempt to clarify what enhancements might be paid for out of NR's general funds. Small, obviously, and given the usual relationship of spending outturn to budget in NR quite likely they'll fade away into nothingness. We've seen that electrification not yet scheduled for CP5 has been seen as needing DfT approval, but was put on the "not on my watch" list.

What that means for work that was approved and scheduled, but deferred to create budgetary flexibility, remains to be seen. From ET's comments, it seems NR think they can get on with those soon - perhaps because budgets always look bigger when new.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 27, 2017, 04:50:58 pm
Having re-read the statement released by DfT with the SoFA, it does fill in some gaps. In particular, it says:
Quote
Government has already made clear that it expects new enhancements to the rail network to be developed outside of the regulatory system. However, the SoFA published today includes funding to continue to take forward the enhancements that were deferred from control period 5. In line with the new process for enhancements these schemes will continue to be subject to ongoing consideration to ensure they deliver the best results for both rail users and taxpayers. In addition to this, I am making funding available for the early-stage development of new enhancement schemes.

Christian Wolmar, in his reaction to the SoFA last month (http://www.christianwolmar.co.uk/2017/10/rail-838-is-48bn-too-good-to-be-true/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+feed%2Fchristianwolmar+%28Christian+Wolmar%29), quoted an estimate of the funding for deferred CP5 enhancement of £ 5Bn, but he didn't say whose estimate that was. You could do quite a bit of electrifying with that, even on post-Hendy costings.

With regard to getting started on CP6 work, however it gets funded, I find the wording ""I am making funding available" unhelpful. As it is "in addition", is isn't included in his SoFA. So where is it? If it is still being discussed, isn't it a case of "I will be making..."?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on November 27, 2017, 06:44:04 pm
Its the sentence *after* your bolding that I feel is the major one, in that it states quite clearly that if they (cintinue to) think that bi-modes are the way forward & find them working well, wiring may not be 'the best result' for both users & taxpayers. Therefore continuimg to kick it into even longer grass. I don't think SoFA gives us any guarantees of work in CP6.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on November 28, 2017, 05:34:37 pm
There is supposed to be an MPATS built at Westerleigh Junction, though I'm not sure quite where. That would need several post pairs, rather taller than the usual stanchions, for its connections. Judging from others, probably four pairs and then two more a few OLE spans away.,

Probably in the ' V ' between the Up Main and Down Charfield lines, the other side of the two overbridges to the junction itself and the signalling relay room. There is at present a communications mast there, visit Google Earth and check it out.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on November 28, 2017, 06:56:44 pm

With regard to the Steventon Bridge saga, have there been any developments along the lines of:

http://freyssinet.co.uk/elevarch-masonry-bridge-arch-lift-trial-moco-farm-buckinghamshire/

?

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rhydgaled on December 04, 2017, 09:17:07 pm
It doesn't look like Steventon will be ready any time soon and doubtful the high street bridge will even be rebuilt now before December 2018. Loco-haulage anyone?
Apparently they are looking at a temporary solution with a speed limit to achieve the deadline.

NR tweets also suggest they are lowering the track this weekend. So it looks like a combination of lowered track, minimum clearances and reduced speed to allow the gradient of the contact wire to be very steep. 

Any idea what the speed limit might be? I'm sure the villagers will be asking why that can't be a permanent solution as they are so opposed to the bridge being rebuilt. The contact wire will be steep too to obtain the clearance needed at the level crossings.
Given the opposition to rebuilding the bridge, and the fact that the OHLE will fit under it, why don't they build a link-road to the bridge and close the level crossing (at least to vehicles)? Given Network Rail / ORR seem to be quite keen on  reducing the number of level crossings, it would be pretty silly to rebuild the bridge then a few years later the level crossing gets closed anyway.

There was a proposal to improve the unmade track to do the opposite of this as a temporary measure during the bridge works.  However if you look at the map you will see that as the solution you propose it would cut the village in two. Also remember that there are two level crossings in Steventon.
If the 'unmade track' you refer to is the one I'm looking at on Google Earth, I don't see the problem. Why couldn't turning that into a full road be a means of allowing the crossing nearest the bridge to close? I suppose there is still a problem with the linespeed unless the second level crossing is far enough away from the bridge to allow an acceptable OHLE gradient between them (that was my hope when I made the suggestion, I wasn't suggesting closing both level crossings, at least not immediately, if the bridge and linespeed can both be kept in full by closing just the crossing closest to the bridge).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on December 04, 2017, 09:54:14 pm
It doesn't look like Steventon will be ready any time soon and doubtful the high street bridge will even be rebuilt now before December 2018. Loco-haulage anyone?
Apparently they are looking at a temporary solution with a speed limit to achieve the deadline.

NR tweets also suggest they are lowering the track this weekend. So it looks like a combination of lowered track, minimum clearances and reduced speed to allow the gradient of the contact wire to be very steep. 

Any idea what the speed limit might be? I'm sure the villagers will be asking why that can't be a permanent solution as they are so opposed to the bridge being rebuilt. The contact wire will be steep too to obtain the clearance needed at the level crossings.
Given the opposition to rebuilding the bridge, and the fact that the OHLE will fit under it, why don't they build a link-road to the bridge and close the level crossing (at least to vehicles)? Given Network Rail / ORR seem to be quite keen on  reducing the number of level crossings, it would be pretty silly to rebuild the bridge then a few years later the level crossing gets closed anyway.

There was a proposal to improve the unmade track to do the opposite of this as a temporary measure during the bridge works.  However if you look at the map you will see that as the solution you propose it would cut the village in two. Also remember that there are two level crossings in Steventon.
If the 'unmade track' you refer to is the one I'm looking at on Google Earth, I don't see the problem. Why couldn't turning that into a full road be a means of allowing the crossing nearest the bridge to close? I suppose there is still a problem with the linespeed unless the second level crossing is far enough away from the bridge to allow an acceptable OHLE gradient between them (that was my hope when I made the suggestion, I wasn't suggesting closing both level crossings, at least not immediately, if the bridge and linespeed can both be kept in full by closing just the crossing closest to the bridge).

It's a mile round by road.  A footbridge would be very high and would also be a barrier to many (long ramps or lots of steps).  I think you would have to see the site on the ground to understand that. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on December 17, 2017, 07:01:53 am
Text of yesterdays mailshot from Network Rail ;

I am writing to let you know that we will be continuing our work to electrify the line between London and Cardiff over the Christmas period. This will include installing overhead line equipment from Winterbourne to Chipping Sodbury.

The installation of masts and booms is a relatively quiet process; however, some noise may be created from the on track machines that will be used to lift the masts into place. We recognise construction work can be disruptive to our neighbours and we will make every effort to minimise any unnecessary or avoidable noise. 

The work will take place over the following dates and times:     

Saturday 23 December during the night between 22:00- 08:00
Monday 25 December during the day between 08:00 – 22:00
Tuesday 26 December during the day between 08:00 – 22:00

Hope all personnel involved have a good Chistmas dinner on Sunday 24 December.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on December 18, 2017, 11:20:25 pm
I've noticed quite a lot of masts already up between Winterbourne and Chipping Sodbury.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on December 21, 2017, 03:46:52 pm
Whilst out today I passed through the two road underbridges at Westerleigh Junction and noted that 'dangly bits' have appeared on some of the gantries and booms at this location so I would think that the work notified to us living close to the GW SW line as taking place over the Christmas period will be the stringing up of the overhead kniting.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on December 21, 2017, 06:10:46 pm
Network Rail update https://www.networkrail.co.uk/running-the-railway/our-routes/western/great-western-mainline/west-berkshire/ (https://www.networkrail.co.uk/running-the-railway/our-routes/western/great-western-mainline/west-berkshire/) suggests there will be some progress on the upper reaches of the B&H over the coming weekend, and on Christmas Day and Boxing Day also :-)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on December 22, 2017, 02:38:48 pm
It would appear that NR or their contractors are storing OLE gantries on the old Wroughton airfield.  For the most part this is fine, but the long ones....

https://www.facebook.com/groups/174647835905162/permalink/1706594262710504 (https://www.facebook.com/groups/174647835905162/permalink/1706594262710504)

(https://scontent.flhr2-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/25659300_10159922964900454_5630103081352252684_n.jpg?oh=f219d7312ac7b10ceb69c3e92f047348&oe=5AC8E623)
(https://scontent.flhr2-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t31.0-8/25532203_10159922965025454_2235738241999063179_o.jpg?oh=d29468a595a38214a864b37f55687b4e&oe=5ACA359C)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: lbraine on December 26, 2017, 06:19:13 pm
Seen here (towards the end of the slide show) : http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/15792846.PICTURES__Rail_engineers_work_through_Christmas_to_fix_signals/#gallery1

Clearly some 'footings' for the OLE being sunk at/around Oxford this Christmas period.

Good to see seem some joined up Network Rail thinking - taking advantage of the opportunity presented by the track renewals.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on December 26, 2017, 07:06:13 pm
Clearly some 'footings' for the OLE being sunk at/around Oxford this Christmas period.

Good to see seem some joined up Network Rail thinking - taking advantage of the opportunity presented by the track renewals.

I suspect not - that site is north of the north end of the northern sidings, so while the wires might be tied off there they are more likely to stop a bit further south. I reckon it's for a signal gantry, which for one thing would explain the caption given to the pictures!

There was another four-track gantry put up a couple of years ago about 300 m to the south. That only appears to have one signal on it, so maybe it's the preferred method of supporting signals these days, and another one might well be needed so close. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on December 26, 2017, 08:56:52 pm
Contingency for 4-tracking Oxford - Didcot?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 26, 2017, 10:28:29 pm
Clearly some 'footings' for the OLE being sunk at/around Oxford this Christmas period.

Good to see seem some joined up Network Rail thinking - taking advantage of the opportunity presented by the track renewals.

I suspect not - that site is north of the north end of the northern sidings, so while the wires might be tied off there they are more likely to stop a bit further south. I reckon it's for a signal gantry, which for one thing would explain the caption given to the pictures!

There was another four-track gantry put up a couple of years ago about 300 m to the south. That only appears to have one signal on it, so maybe it's the preferred method of supporting signals these days, and another one might well be needed so close. 

That’s absolutely right, stuving.  That looks like the foundations for the gantry that will support signals OD2391/3/5/7 which will protect movements towards Oxford North Junction.  The other gantry currently has OX135 and OX19 attached to it (OX135 is attached to the side of it), but will eventually have four signals OD2374/6/78/80, the last two being renumbered from the current 19 and 135 signals and protect movements towards Oxford station.

With all lines becoming bi-directionally signalled in the Oxford area, there’s quite a few additional signals needed and gantries seem to be flavour of the month.  I can see the advantages in terms of cabling and maintenance, though I would have thought installation costs would be more expensive?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightf48544 on December 27, 2017, 10:24:51 am
Isn't today the day that the ORR have to sign off Maidenhead to Tilehurst electrification to enable the Local TV  Didcot to Padd service to be 387s and IETs to run with pans up to Milton. from 2/3 Jan?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on December 27, 2017, 10:55:34 am
It was signed last Friday.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 27, 2017, 11:38:59 am
IETs will change over east of Didcot rather than west at Milton, except for London bound trains stopping at Didcot which will be able to change at the platform.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 27, 2017, 12:38:12 pm
IETs will change over east of Didcot rather than west at Milton, except for London bound trains stopping at Didcot which will be able to change at the platform.

If the DN IET get it wrong there will be a nice collection did-embodied Pans in the Milton area and a few smashed up Tensorex units (these are the wire tensioning devices)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 27, 2017, 01:31:12 pm
That’s the reason ALL westbound trains will change from electric to diesel at Moreton Cutting before getting to Didcot whether stopping or not.  A signal berth triggered GSM-R message will further remind drivers.  I’ll still be expecting someone to forget...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 27, 2017, 02:47:03 pm
That’s the reason ALL westbound trains will change from electric to diesel at Moreton Cutting before getting to Didcot whether stopping or not.  A signal berth triggered GSM-R message will further remind drivers.  I’ll still be expecting someone to forget...

Saltwood Tunnel in Kent was an effective Pad remove device when the Eurostars used the XTD route to Waterloo  ;D

Much the same as Blackfriars station canopy did for the 319s and perhaps the 700s (not had one yet)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on December 30, 2017, 05:39:38 pm
Passed through Bristol Parkway yesterday (29th December).

Disappointed with progress over Chistmas period on the electrification project. Couldn't see any uprights west of the footbridge within the station environs and less than a handful between what was known as Pugsleys bridge and the east side of footbridge. Looking from the upper deck of the original multi storey car park some uprights for the gantries are visible on the car park side of the up loop whilst it looks like the uprights for the downside have been sunk into the platform surface of the new platform 1 and the existing platform 2. To my untrained eye it looks as if the OHL for both the down through loop line and the new platform 1 line will be hung from the overhang of a gantry supported by the upright inserted into the surface of platforms 1/2 and the upright alongside the car park, the OHL for the down main (platform 2), up main (platform 3), up platform 4 loop line and the up loop will be hung from the gantry itself.

As for the new platform, the CIS is installed and operating, all platform numbering is in place with big notices detailing the regional destinations from which platform although there were at least two work sites on the platforms 1/2 which were barriered off.

I also noticed a staff CIS display on a steel upright facing the steps down from the footbridge to platforms 3/4 which I hadn't noticed on my previous passages through the station, don't know if there is a similar one facing the steps down from the footbridge to platforms 1/2, must look next time.

Looking at RTT couldn't see any routings into the new platform, will have to watch OTT.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: lbraine on December 30, 2017, 07:11:13 pm
Visiting Reading today - and the Reading to London Paddington stoppers were all being run by EMUs. The Turbos were running Oxford to Reading only.

Perhaps a softly softly / incremental approach to the full switch over of TV services on the 2nd.

Good to see the EMUs using the wires at Reading at long last


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on January 31, 2018, 08:23:04 am
On a bustitution back to Thatcham last night, noticed work-in-progress at several locations - just east of Theale platforms, just west of the new Ufton Nervet bridge and the vicinity of Towney crossing.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on February 03, 2018, 07:37:41 pm
The installation of masts and booms is a relatively quiet process

So why are they called "BOOM!" then?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on February 20, 2018, 06:45:00 pm
Been a while since I posted on progress, well here goes.

Apart from the immediate area around Bristol Parkway station, all the uprights are installed from the first overbridge East of Parkway right through to the Western portal of the Chippping Sodbury Tunnel together with dangly bits from the booms, cantilevers and gantries of whatever you call them. I have noticed that quite a few what looks like tubular brackets have been affixed to some uprights and there seems to be no consistency in the installations and makes me think that  'overs'  from other projects have been brought together and used here. From my uniformed eye all that remains to be installed is the overhead knitting.

On the  'operational overrun'  from Westerleigh Junction to Rodford Bridge all the uprights are in place, the last remaining ones having been installed the past weekend with only one gantry, that at the end of the overrun to be installed. Apart from the immediate vicinity of the junction itself no dangly bits have been attached to the booms / cantilevers that I can see. One thing I did notice was the closeness of the uprights on the curve round towards Yate but then with the radius of the curve on the stretch installations at distances the same as on a straight line would mean the OH wire would be  'out of gauge'  for the pantograph,

Progress at last after a lull following the Badminton line closure of last fall.

I expect my next progress report on this subject will be to inform coffee shop members that the OH knitting is up.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chuffed on February 20, 2018, 07:07:02 pm
It's a good job Mary Whitehouse isn't still around with all these references to 'dangly bits'. She'd be apopleptic and the Lord Chamberlain's blue pencil would be working overtime ! ::)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on February 20, 2018, 09:21:31 pm
Uprights and cross-beams installed through Thatcham Station over the last few days. Uprights in place through Midgham also.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on February 20, 2018, 09:40:39 pm
Pretty much all knitting in place from just east of Swindon Station to Didcot only a few incomplete sections. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on February 20, 2018, 11:41:10 pm
It's a good job Mary Whitehouse isn't still around with all these references to 'dangly bits'. She'd be apopleptic and the Lord Chamberlain's blue pencil would be working overtime ! ::)

Less of that word "pencil", please. And "blue" while you're at it. And I'm not sure "apoplectic" isn't dirty: I'll have to look that one up and get back to you.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on February 22, 2018, 01:51:46 pm
Pretty much all knitting in place from just east of Swindon Station to Didcot only a few incomplete sections. 

Yes, from what I can see driving around locally there is only the Steventon gap to wire, as cantilevers and small part steelwork (SPS - aka 'dangly bits'  ;D ) are complete from the A34 bridge to west of Causeway crossing, plus there is one wire run missing on the up line between Uffington station and Baulking.

Wires appear to be complete from Uffington to South Marston now and the autotransformer stations (ATS) at Wantage Road, Uffington and Shrivenham are complete and look like they've been wired in.

I've not been to Swindon station but driving into town last week it appears that main steelwork is in place from South Marston to the station with some SPS in place too. Someone mentioned on RMWeb that they'd been briefed that the wires between Didcot and Swindon were to be treated as live from next May and to Bristol Parkway from June. Can't comment on progress west of Swindon but the implied energisation to Swindon by May would appear be easily achievable from the apparent progress to date. This does not, of course, mean that trains will be running on AC from that date as the earliest commitment for that has been December 2018.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on February 22, 2018, 03:54:13 pm
The Customer Panel in January was given an internal target date for the electrification to enter public service to Swindon; sadly as those there were asked not to quote it I feel unable to share it here as I haven't personally yet seen it said elsewhere in the public domain. I know this is a bit of a tease, but it might encourage someone not under a similar confidence to disclose it :)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on April 13, 2018, 06:49:10 pm
I note that today Friday the Thirteenth of April marks the official opening of the new platform One at Bristol Parkway Station
The ceremony was conducted by The SOS for transport Mr Greyling this afternoon
Amongst others of the great and good to be present a Mr M Hopwood !.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on April 13, 2018, 07:23:51 pm
Amongst others of the great and good to be present a Mr M Hopwood !.
He was indeed. One for the photo album standing by one of his shiny new trains:

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Dap78lsXcAEyEti?format=jpg&name=large


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on April 13, 2018, 07:49:53 pm
Amongst others of the great and good to be present a Mr M Hopwood !.
He was indeed. One for the photo album standing by one of his shiny new trains:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Dap78lsXcAEyEti?format=jpg&name=large

How DID I miss him, was at Parkway today and I would have, at full volume, proclaimed look folks Mr Hopwood has crawled out of the woodwork today to have his piccy took but cant answer his customers questions why these shiny new 10 coach trains are running with 5 coaches locked out of use carrying fresh air, why turbos can't call at short platforms, why station stops are pulled forcing passengers to override and travel back, why customers are asked to pay more for their travel by an alternative route when engineering work affects their regular route.

Please someone let me know in advance when and where his next public appearance is and if I can make it I'll be there.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Sixty3Closure on April 14, 2018, 05:56:56 pm
One of the platform extensions at Twyford is...well not quite finished but looking more like a platform than a large mound of earth. It does feel completion is in sight.

I think it was part of the Electrification programme but they seem quite far apart with the platform still unfinished so maybe not.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on April 23, 2018, 10:41:15 pm
Wires going up between Midgham and Aldermaston observed whilst passing by road earlier this evening.

Railcam's Newbury camera showing infrastructure going up in the area between Newbury and the Racecourse earlier also.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on May 02, 2018, 09:55:09 pm
Wires all up round Fosse Bridge near Malmesbury. (This might have been noted before, in which case, sorry!)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on May 03, 2018, 06:19:45 am
Wires all up round Fosse Bridge near Malmesbury. (This might have been noted before, in which case, sorry!)

Some overhead knitting also up between Chipping Sodbury and Westerleigh Junction. looks like the tensioning wire which is fixed at one end and onto a load of weights at tother what I could see as it was wrapped round pulley wheels.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on May 03, 2018, 07:29:44 am
I saw a lot of knitting in Swindon Station last week though by no means complete.

I also notices some additional switchgear going in at the Dicot feeder is this for the swindon section?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on May 03, 2018, 10:16:27 am
I saw a lot of knitting in Swindon Station last week though by no means complete.
???
(https://cms-assets.tutsplus.com/uploads/users/40/syllabuses/585/preview_image/KnittingforBeginners.jpg)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: GBM on May 03, 2018, 11:29:26 am
I saw a lot of knitting in Swindon Station last week though by no means complete.
???
(https://cms-assets.tutsplus.com/uploads/users/40/syllabuses/585/preview_image/KnittingforBeginners.jpg)

Yarnbombing now?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on May 03, 2018, 01:00:10 pm
On the B&H, following April's blockade, wires now appear to be up from just east of Newbury Racecourse all the way to just west of Theale. Towney Loop has also been wired.

A lot of infrastructure also went up through Newbury Racecourse (uprights, crossbeams and SPS but no wires yet), and between there and Newbury itself (some uprights and crossbeams, but still some gaps and no SPS or wires yet).
The Station area itself still has some uprights and crossbeams missing. The new footbridge is now open (without lifts as yet) and I understand the old footbridge will come down during the next blockade (14th - 18th May).

West of Newbury, uprights only so far are in place and extend for at least a few hundred metres west of the Station (beyond Rockingham Road Bridge). This is presumably to allow for electric-only trains to reverse and swop from down to up lines and vice-versa.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on May 03, 2018, 01:41:08 pm
On the B&H, following April's blockade, wires now appear to be up from just east of Newbury Racecourse all the way to just west of Theale. Towney Loop has also been wired.

So why ON EARTH do they need all the other stoppages May, June, July, August, October and November?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on May 03, 2018, 03:55:34 pm
From my understanding there's quite a lot to do around Reading West still, and between there and Southcote Jct. I'd say most of the metalwork is now up between there and Theale. From what I have witnessed a few days ago there is still quite a bit to do around the Newbury Station area itself. Lots of pics up on railforums.co.uk (http://railforums.co.uk) (Great Western Electrification Progress thread) to back this up.

Local chatter (unofficial) suggests there is a plan to turn the power on to Newbury in September, so it may be that some of those later blocks aren't needed?



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on May 03, 2018, 05:38:27 pm
I saw a lot of knitting in Swindon Station last week though by no means complete.

I also notices some additional switchgear going in at the Dicot feeder is this for the swindon section?

I'm puzzled by that. The ATFS enclosure at Foxhall Junction looked to be fully populated when first built, so where would they put any new bits?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on May 03, 2018, 06:52:42 pm
I saw a lot of knitting in Swindon Station last week though by no means complete.

I also notices some additional switchgear going in at the Dicot feeder is this for the swindon section?

I'm puzzled by that. The ATFS enclosure at Foxhall Junction looked to be fully populated when first built, so where would they put any new bits?

It seems to be a separate enclosure a few metres to the West


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on May 04, 2018, 10:24:16 am
From my understanding there's quite a lot to do around Reading West still, and between there and Southcote Jct. I'd say most of the metalwork is now up between there and Theale.

I expect Reading West to Southcote (and onto Theale) would be done over night or weekends to minimise impact on services to/through Basingstoke and freight services accessing Theale. As above I expect the last blockade or two are 'just in case' ones


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Jason on May 04, 2018, 01:56:42 pm
Still only foundation posts behind the platform at Reading West at the moment.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on May 04, 2018, 10:10:46 pm
I saw a lot of knitting in Swindon Station last week though by no means complete.

I also notices some additional switchgear going in at the Dicot feeder is this for the swindon section?

I'm puzzled by that. The ATFS enclosure at Foxhall Junction looked to be fully populated when first built, so where would they put any new bits?

It seems to be a separate enclosure a few metres to the West

I had an opportunity to go and look at this today, and I reckon it's a bunch of isolators or track switches. So that is switchgear in a sense, but not the usual one of protection (circuit breakers). They are usually found on top of OLE structures, next to points, allowing each running track to be isolated in case of a failure while keeping the rest in use. That means they are OLE components, not part of the ATFS.

As a switch connecting across an insulated gap in the conductor/catenary pair, a position close to the gap is preferred as it keeps the 25 kV wires short. The operating rods can run from the side of the track, where operation is either manual or motorised. However, in this case a small copse of stanchions has been built instead of using the OLE supports. That does seem rather odd.

Presumably they will provide isolation of the OLE at the four crossovers west of Foxhall junction itself, and perhaps some more as well (there a ten stanchions with I think one switch each). But how will the 25kV connections get to various places above the track? Such leads from the ATFS call for overheight stanchions both side of the line, and ther's no sign of them yet.

Anyway, here's a picture of the forest...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on May 04, 2018, 10:22:30 pm
Incidentally, in that picture the Foxhall Junction ATFS is over on the right, and close to it there is a kind of compost bin halfway up a pole. That is a braking resistor.

These are needed in case there are no trains drawing power when one (or more) are regenerating, so trying to put power back into the supply. However, I don't think this one is sized to do that for very long. IETs are required to provide regenerative braking, but to turn this off if the OLE voltage rises above 29 kV. They are allowed 100 ms to do this, so the energy to be dumped is not very large - but the resistor is still needed.

With no resistor the line voltage could rise too fast, so the voltage could still reach a damaging level before the IET reacts. I suspect it is also there to cope if a train "forgets" to turn off its regeneration.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on May 05, 2018, 08:31:35 am
Incidentally, in that picture the Foxhall Junction ATFS is over on the right, and close to it there is a kind of compost bin halfway up a pole. That is a braking resistor.

These are needed in case there are no trains drawing power when one (or more) are regenerating, so trying to put power back into the supply. However, I don't think this one is sized to do that for very long. IETs are required to provide regenerative braking, but to turn this off if the OLE voltage rises above 29 kV. They are allowed 100 ms to do this, so the energy to be dumped is not very large - but the resistor is still needed.

With no resistor the line voltage could rise too fast, so the voltage could still reach a damaging level before the IET reacts. I suspect it is also there to cope if a train "forgets" to turn off its regeneration.

Its not a "breaking resistor" its called a damper but electrically it is a harmonic filter and also helps with power factor correction.   The train regulates the re-gen braking it can only raise to a certain voltage after that the train dumps the energy in to resistors on board the train.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on May 05, 2018, 10:03:16 am
Incidentally, in that picture the Foxhall Junction ATFS is over on the right, and close to it there is a kind of compost bin halfway up a pole. That is a braking resistor.

These are needed in case there are no trains drawing power when one (or more) are regenerating, so trying to put power back into the supply. However, I don't think this one is sized to do that for very long. IETs are required to provide regenerative braking, but to turn this off if the OLE voltage rises above 29 kV. They are allowed 100 ms to do this, so the energy to be dumped is not very large - but the resistor is still needed.

With no resistor the line voltage could rise too fast, so the voltage could still reach a damaging level before the IET reacts. I suspect it is also there to cope if a train "forgets" to turn off its regeneration.

Its not a "breaking resistor" its called a damper but electrically it is a harmonic filter and also helps with power factor correction.   The train regulates the re-gen braking it can only raise to a certain voltage after that the train dumps the energy in to resistors on board the train.

OK, I stand corrected on that one. Big lineside resistors are used for both purposes (and probably a few others).

In fact, I recall seeing in one article about the order for 802s that not only did they get higher engine rating (for going up more hills) and bigger fuel tanks (for going further) but also bigger on-board resistors (for going down more hills). In that case the same braking resistors are used with no external power supply, of course. That does suggest that these roof-mounted resistors are sized to provide all the electric braking the train needs without having to send any power off-board as regeneration.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on May 05, 2018, 05:06:05 pm
Incidentally, in that picture the Foxhall Junction ATFS is over on the right, and close to it there is a kind of compost bin halfway up a pole. That is a braking resistor.

These are needed in case there are no trains drawing power when one (or more) are regenerating, so trying to put power back into the supply. However, I don't think this one is sized to do that for very long. IETs are required to provide regenerative braking, but to turn this off if the OLE voltage rises above 29 kV. They are allowed 100 ms to do this, so the energy to be dumped is not very large - but the resistor is still needed.

With no resistor the line voltage could rise too fast, so the voltage could still reach a damaging level before the IET reacts. I suspect it is also there to cope if a train "forgets" to turn off its regeneration.

Its not a "breaking resistor" its called a damper but electrically it is a harmonic filter and also helps with power factor correction.   The train regulates the re-gen braking it can only raise to a certain voltage after that the train dumps the energy in to resistors on board the train.

OK, I stand corrected on that one. Big lineside resistors are used for both purposes (and probably a few others).

In fact, I recall seeing in one article about the order for 802s that not only did they get higher engine rating (for going up more hills) and bigger fuel tanks (for going further) but also bigger on-board resistors (for going down more hills). In that case the same braking resistors are used with no external power supply, of course. That does suggest that these roof-mounted resistors are sized to provide all the electric braking the train needs without having to send any power off-board as regeneration.



Those "sheds" as they were called were first installed on the WCML in around 2000 for the introduction of the Pendolino's. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on May 10, 2018, 07:27:10 pm
I saw a lot of knitting in Swindon Station last week though by no means complete.

I also notices some additional switchgear going in at the Dicot feeder is this for the swindon section?

I'm puzzled by that. The ATFS enclosure at Foxhall Junction looked to be fully populated when first built, so where would they put any new bits?

It seems to be a separate enclosure a few metres to the West

I had an opportunity to go and look at this today, and I reckon it's a bunch of isolators or track switches. So that is switchgear in a sense, but not the usual one of protection (circuit breakers). They are usually found on top of OLE structures, next to points, allowing each running track to be isolated in case of a failure while keeping the rest in use. That means they are OLE components, not part of the ATFS.

As a switch connecting across an insulated gap in the conductor/catenary pair, a position close to the gap is preferred as it keeps the 25 kV wires short. The operating rods can run from the side of the track, where operation is either manual or motorised. However, in this case a small copse of stanchions has been built instead of using the OLE supports. That does seem rather odd.

Presumably they will provide isolation of the OLE at the four crossovers west of Foxhall junction itself, and perhaps some more as well (there a ten stanchions with I think one switch each). But how will the 25kV connections get to various places above the track? Such leads from the ATFS call for overheight stanchions both side of the line, and ther's no sign of them yet.

Anyway, here's a picture of the forest...

I went past again today.  There seem to be three enclosures.  The main one at the rear of the Stuving's picture is I believe the feeder.  Then behind that there is another completed smaller enclosure similar to the one being built.   


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on May 10, 2018, 07:29:22 pm
I also noticed the wiring in Swindon Station is nearing completion.  On Tuesday the south side of the station had been done and by today most of the north side had been done as well.  Lots of shiny copper wire!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on May 10, 2018, 07:44:47 pm
I went past again today.  There seem to be three enclosures.  The main one at the rear of the Stuving's picture is I believe the feeder.  Then behind that there is another completed smaller enclosure similar to the one being built.   

The enclosure behind (i.e. east) of the ATFS is the National Grid's 25 kV substation, which does contain ground-mounted switchgear, plus a tin shed. It is at the end of the buried cable link that starts in their 400 kV substation by the power station, where the two 400/25 kV transformers are.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on May 10, 2018, 08:04:19 pm
I have been watching the wiring work near my residence. It would appear to me that two work compounds near me are being used as training schools for a wiring gang. Both lines have the overhead wires in place for a short stretch but stanchion to stanchion wiring remains to be done. I'm also intrigued by the varying heights of some stanchions, one pair of stanchions has a gantry affixed so that the top side of the gantry and the top of the stanchions are level but he next pair of stanchions has a gantry affixed at the same height with the pair of stanchions protruding above the gantry by a metre or so whilst another stanchion has what looks like a tubular bracket strapped to it to provide an at contact height the copper wire OHL whilst the stanchion top rises to more than twice the height of the height from the pile cap to the strapped tubular bracket. Weird.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on May 15, 2018, 07:05:42 pm

While it's not GWML electrification, two return journeys were made using the OLE by Pendolino 390 152 "Virgin Knight" from Preston to Blackpool North,  overnight (14/15) without incident.

Well done.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on May 16, 2018, 11:51:40 pm

While it's not GWML electrification, two return journeys were made using the OLE by Pendolino 390 152 "Virgin Knight" from Preston to Blackpool North,  overnight (14/15) without incident.

Well done.

OTC

I'm pleased! For the year up to November last, I made regular trips to Blackpool North, and could see the electrification taking shape from the start. My last trip by rail was just before the long, long closure of the line, and sadly my future trips are likely to be infrequent and accompanied, so by car.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on May 17, 2018, 09:04:35 am
Wires going up through Theale Station when I was there late last night.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on May 18, 2018, 05:46:50 pm

....and ORR is reported to have signed off NWEP 3 (Blackpool N) for passenger service operation from Sunday 20/5.

So we needn't expect delays for Swindon etc from them as they can respond within the same week!

Silver linings,

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on May 26, 2018, 11:05:22 am
So what is happening between Didcot and Chippenham this weekend that they have closed the line for three days?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rob on the hill on May 26, 2018, 11:24:20 am
So what is happening between Didcot and Chippenham this weekend that they have closed the line for three days?

https://www.networkrail.co.uk/running-the-railway/our-routes/western/great-western-mainline/wiltshire-swindon/


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on May 26, 2018, 11:40:18 am
So what is happening between Didcot and Chippenham this weekend that they have closed the line for three days?

NR are supposed to be energising the OLE between Milton Junction (the present limit) and Wantage Road this weekend. There were lots of engineers all over the OLE at Challow when I went past on the A417 earlier this morning so they are clearly using the blockade to prepare this section to go live in a few weeks time.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on May 27, 2018, 08:38:47 am
So what is happening between Didcot and Chippenham this weekend that they have closed the line for three days?

NR are supposed to be energising the OLE between Milton Junction (the present limit) and Wantage Road this weekend. There were lots of engineers all over the OLE at Challow when I went past on the A417 earlier this morning so they are clearly using the blockade to prepare this section to go live in a few weeks time.


This is so they can commission the Neutral Sections and associated (electrical) protection and control systems at Foxhall ATFS.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bobm on May 31, 2018, 12:17:13 pm
Network Rail's planning application to raise the footbridge at Reading West to allow for electrification was rejected by Reading Borough Council last night. 

During the meeting NR officials said a refusal would mean the demolition of the existing bridge so as not to delay the whole project overall.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on May 31, 2018, 12:40:44 pm
Network Rail's planning application to raise the footbridge at Reading West to allow for electrification was rejected by Reading Borough Council last night. 

During the meeting NR officials said a refusal would mean the demolition of the existing bridge so as not to delay the whole project overall.

Oooh - doing a Pilning and making it one direction only??   Or is there another access?

Don't expect that Reading Borough Councillors liked what the NR officials said if it came across as a threat - "give us permission or else ....".


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on May 31, 2018, 12:44:05 pm
Network Rail's planning application to raise the footbridge at Reading West to allow for electrification was rejected by Reading Borough Council last night. 

During the meeting NR officials said a refusal would mean the demolition of the existing bridge so as not to delay the whole project overall.

With a separate ramp access to the down platform being provided from the main road, then I doubt Network Rail will be too worried in the short term.   But surely with footbridge replacement being needed for operational reasons, shouldn't it come under permitted development rights?  

Or is there another access?
As above, it's being provided as part of the present works, unless that's been refused as well?

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on May 31, 2018, 05:11:36 pm
Network Rail's planning application to raise the footbridge at Reading West to allow for electrification was rejected by Reading Borough Council last night. 

During the meeting NR officials said a refusal would mean the demolition of the existing bridge so as not to delay the whole project overall.

With a separate ramp access to the down platform being provided from the main road, then I doubt Network Rail will be too worried in the short term.   But surely with footbridge replacement being needed for operational reasons, shouldn't it come under permitted development rights?  

Or is there another access?
As above, it's being provided as part of the present works, unless that's been refused as well?

Paul

I suspect its permitted development rights, so the meeting the RBC was more consultation than negotiation


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on May 31, 2018, 06:48:27 pm
Oooh - doing a Pilning and making it one direction only??   Or is there another access?
As above, it's being provided as part of the present works, unless that's been refused as well?
Paul

Not refused, this is already going ahead.


Just to clarify:

Platform 1 is currently accessed from the South via a ramp from the Tilehurst Road
Platform 2 is currently accessed from the North via a ramp with a handful of steps from the Oxford Road
A stepped bridge links the two platforms.
The new work going ahead links Platform 1 with a stepped entrance from the Oxford Road

By having no bridge in place would require those entering from the Tilehurst Road who wish to travel to Reading (and beyond) using Platform 2 to have to either enter via Platform 1, go to the other end of the platform, down via the (new) steps to the Oxford Road, go under the railway bridge, and back up via the existing entrance to Platform 2, or they can walk down Western Elms Avenue and enter Platform 2 from the Oxford Road.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on June 01, 2018, 12:05:42 am
Network Rail's planning application to raise the footbridge at Reading West to allow for electrification was rejected by Reading Borough Council last night. 

During the meeting NR officials said a refusal would mean the demolition of the existing bridge so as not to delay the whole project overall.

With a separate ramp access to the down platform being provided from the main road, then I doubt Network Rail will be too worried in the short term.   But surely with footbridge replacement being needed for operational reasons, shouldn't it come under permitted development rights?  

Or is there another access?
As above, it's being provided as part of the present works, unless that's been refused as well?

Paul

There was an application to jack up the existing bridge by 1.8 m, which was approved in July 2016, despite being criticised for not being step-free. That was explained as due to lifts coming out of a different budget, which didn't have Reading West on its list.

This new one is for new bridge, with provision for future lifts (which means it has a level deck so is more prominent), and further south (that places it closer to the centre of the extended platform 2). NR say this has been done to give a greater clearance, though it does also provide for future step-freedom. I found the application didn't come up on the RBC portal when searched for with "Network Rail", but it does using the number 172192.

NR can build a bridge as permitted development, but RBC have a right to refuse the application on the grounds of the bridge's design and location. That's what they've done. Some of the neighbours in recent houses have complained a lot about it being so big and ugly, and close to them where the existing one is close to much older houses. Those old terraces have a blind end wall facing the railway, rather then their rear wall and back garden. I guess that's why the objectors are so resentful despite being a little further away.

Obviously this kind of conflict is built into the current planning rules. How it gets solved, I'm not sure. I note that the main complaint, from the house closest to the new bridge, is from someone who admits they knew this was planned when they bought. Isn't that usually seen as weakening their argument in planning law?

The access from P1 to Oxford Road is, NR say, all covered by permitted development rights. However, they do include drawings of it, but not because that too has a bridge in it, so they have to. So it isn't just a ramp, nor with a few steps (as for P2), but uses a free-standing steel stair (4.8 m rise) that just happened to be going spare from another job.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: lbraine on June 02, 2018, 12:05:39 pm
I wonder if the recent strain in relationship between Network Rail and RBC is showing here.

The strain is the further delay in the completion of works to resolve the Cow Lane bottleneck, recently delayed for another 6 months (now Xmas 2018 date). Remember - on the original plan of work for the Reading Station upgrade this crucial artery into Reading was going to be one of the first delivery improvements, about the same time as the new flyover viaducts were due to be delivered.

Also there have more delays on the Reading Green Park new station apparently (info from a local councillor) despite funding being in place. Reason : Network Rail not able to commit to a start date (something to do with signalling design work)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on June 03, 2018, 12:29:09 pm
Had a quick look this morning, the old footbridge at Newbury has come down since the latest blockade started yesterday/overnight. Large crane/s (completely blocking the road to the south Station entrance) being de-rigged this morning.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on June 03, 2018, 12:47:38 pm
The strain is the further delay in the completion of works to resolve the Cow Lane bottleneck, recently delayed for another 6 months (now Xmas 2018 date). Remember - on the original plan of work for the Reading Station upgrade this crucial artery into Reading was going to be one of the first delivery improvements, about the same time as the new flyover viaducts were due to be delivered.

What is the cause of the delay?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on June 03, 2018, 01:01:51 pm
When will Oxford be electrified?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on June 03, 2018, 01:05:01 pm
"
Network Rail's Steve Coe said "ground conditions, drainage issues and uncharted buried services" were to blame for the delays.

He added: "We are working with our contractor to minimise the impact and would like to thank people for their patience."
....

The demolition of the old railway bridge is a key phase of a scheme to improve Reading station that has been in progress since 2011.

Tony Page, deputy leader of Reading Borough Council, said the work had "caused enormous frustrations" but he hoped this announcement would be "warmly welcomed".


"It is unfortunate Network Rail has encountered a number of issues which have delayed the project, which will now be complete by early 2019".

"
Doesn't look like TP really blames NR for this.

It's what happens when decisions/promises are made by a desk bound administrator rather than a CCE.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on June 03, 2018, 01:09:13 pm
When will Oxford be electrified?

A question nobody knows the answer to I suspect.  The recent Class 769 order of bi-mode units probably make it less likely to happen than before unfortunately.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on June 03, 2018, 01:20:07 pm
When will Oxford be electrified?

NR has said "CP6" which only means after 1/4/2019 - the new budget period.

The delay is because track, points  and signalling need sorting first, which is being done this year.

Also quite a lot has already been spent and done North of the present termination at Appleford LC. The Radley ATS is installed as well as many support foundations.

I don't think that anyone likes the turbo shuttle to Didcot Jn and Bi-modes work better under the wires, so we can be optimistic, for once.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on June 03, 2018, 02:07:54 pm
I have to visit Oxford twice a week for 2 months now and the shuttle is busy at peak and in my opinion badly timed. Also feel sorry for the poor drivers just going back and forth for a few hours.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on June 03, 2018, 04:13:24 pm
Quote
Also feel sorry for the poor drivers just going back and forth for a few hours.

Bit more exciting than Slough - Windsor


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on June 03, 2018, 07:28:34 pm
When will Oxford be electrified?


It is high on the CP6 National funding ie its not part of the GW Route funding bid.   part of the reason for its descope in the first place was the redevelopment at Oxford Station had changed from the original GRIP 3 design with of Eastwest rail and Chiltern Marylebone services being introduced; most of the OLE structures would have had to be felled and relocates Oxford AT site would have also needed relocating   


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: wabbit on June 03, 2018, 11:37:00 pm
Any idea what the journey times from Swindon to Pad will be once the line is fully electrified?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on June 04, 2018, 10:17:44 am
Oooh - doing a Pilning and making it one direction only??   Or is there another access?

Don't expect that Reading Borough Councillors liked what the NR officials said if it came across as a threat - "give us permission or else ....".

It sounded less threat than statement of reality to me. I'm sure Reading council will be able to explain why they didn't see a need for a continued footbridge there, and why its removal won't affect the borough's plans for carbon footprint reduction. Or, my inner conspiracy theorist thinks, they were expecting NR to appeal, to save the council the embarrassment of having to make a decision that could upset somebody. But NR can run the railway without a footbridge, and have better things to spend money on than planning appeals, so...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on June 14, 2018, 06:33:08 pm

I understand that the wires went live to Rushey Platt (SW suburb of Swindon) last Friday night.

78.5 miles done.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on June 15, 2018, 08:15:37 pm
Having been in Swindon for the last day or so I can confirm that the OLE is humming away to itself quite happily,and I'm told by those in the know that there's a little bit of testing still to do but as soon as that's done it will be used so in operation earlier than expected.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: CJB666 on June 16, 2018, 09:08:35 am
Severn Tunnel to shut for electrification work
15 June 2018

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-east-wales-44493847

Rail passengers travelling between south Wales and London face longer journey times for the next three weeks as the Severn Tunnel will be closed.

Main line services between Swansea and London Paddington will take 40 minutes longer as trains will be diverted via Gloucester from Saturday until 6 July.

Great Western Railway said those trains will not call at Bristol Parkway.

The closure is due to a £2.8bn project to electrify the south Wales main line for GWR's new electric trains.

Commuters between Bristol and south Wales will be forced to take a rail-replacement bus service.

Trains between England's south coast and Wales will start and end at Bristol Parkway, with buses linking to Newport.

On Sunday, there will be no direct trains between south Wales and London with all services starting and terminating at Bristol Parkway.

Replacement coaches will run to Newport for trains to Cardiff and Swansea.

The work will affect passengers going to major events in south Wales such as England's cricket matches in Cardiff as they face Australia on Saturday and India next month.

Fans going to four Ed Sheeran concerts at the Principality Stadium next week may also be affected by the works.

The track inside the four-mile Severn Tunnel is to be renewed, while "further electrification works" are planned. The track will also be lowered in the two Patchway tunnels.

For passengers a bus service will replace trains between Bristol Parkway and Newport and stop at Patchway and Severn Tunnel Junction.

Trains will continue to run as normal between London Paddington and Bristol Temple Meads via Bath, but there will only be one direct service an hour from London to Bristol Parkway.

====


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on June 16, 2018, 09:18:11 am
Having been in Swindon for the last day or so I can confirm that the OLE is humming away to itself quite happily,and I'm told by those in the know that there's a little bit of testing still to do but as soon as that's done it will be used so in operation earlier than expected.


Passanger train use of the OLE West of Didcot is not planned until September 18.


I have been told by a Project insider that Section Proving has been completed, there are however immunisation, protection and control tests to be done as well as dynamic test to be done by a mesurment train (Mentor) these are done in engineering hours.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: YouKnowNothing on June 16, 2018, 11:29:43 pm

I read an article that stated that this closure is needed to replace rusted assets that were installed in the last large closure in October 2016.

How many more closures are needed?

Severn Tunnel to shut for electrification work
15 June 2018

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-east-wales-44493847

Rail passengers travelling between south Wales and London face longer journey times for the next three weeks as the Severn Tunnel will be closed.

Main line services between Swansea and London Paddington will take 40 minutes longer as trains will be diverted via Gloucester from Saturday until 6 July.

Great Western Railway said those trains will not call at Bristol Parkway.

The closure is due to a £2.8bn project to electrify the south Wales main line for GWR's new electric trains.

Commuters between Bristol and south Wales will be forced to take a rail-replacement bus service.

Trains between England's south coast and Wales will start and end at Bristol Parkway, with buses linking to Newport.

On Sunday, there will be no direct trains between south Wales and London with all services starting and terminating at Bristol Parkway.

Replacement coaches will run to Newport for trains to Cardiff and Swansea.

The work will affect passengers going to major events in south Wales such as England's cricket matches in Cardiff as they face Australia on Saturday and India next month.

Fans going to four Ed Sheeran concerts at the Principality Stadium next week may also be affected by the works.

The track inside the four-mile Severn Tunnel is to be renewed, while "further electrification works" are planned. The track will also be lowered in the two Patchway tunnels.

For passengers a bus service will replace trains between Bristol Parkway and Newport and stop at Patchway and Severn Tunnel Junction.

Trains will continue to run as normal between London Paddington and Bristol Temple Meads via Bath, but there will only be one direct service an hour from London to Bristol Parkway.

====



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bobm on June 16, 2018, 11:37:26 pm
Apparently the original Severn road bridge is closed westbound this weekend too.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: YouKnowNothing on June 17, 2018, 06:10:45 pm
Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on June 17, 2018, 07:15:01 pm
I suspect that it is factually correct but rather misleading.

The conductor rail probably HAS corroded and would be better cleaned than not.
A lot of electrification related works DO remain to be done.

However to imply that the closure is primarily to remove rust is probably rather misleading.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on June 17, 2018, 10:34:57 pm
I suspect that it is factually correct but rather misleading.

The conductor rail probably HAS corroded and would be better cleaned than not.
A lot of electrification related works DO remain to be done.

However to imply that the closure is primarily to remove rust is probably rather misleading.




The local maintainer of the tunnel did advise the project that very little survives in the tunnel for very long, they have even had stainless steel corrode over the years.

It is an extremely harsh environment 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on June 18, 2018, 01:15:12 pm
Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?

Absolute tosh I'm afraid. Ever seen *aluminium* rust?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on June 18, 2018, 01:38:12 pm
"rust" is generally accepted to a type of corrosion that only attacks ferrous metals.
Aluminium CAN corrode, though not rust.
It is asking a bit much to expect a journalist to know the difference between rust and corrosion.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bradshaw on June 18, 2018, 01:38:35 pm
Aluminium is a reactive metal and does ‘rust’ but by forming a layer of aluminium oxide over the surface. Unlike iron, this seals the surface from further oxidation. It is seen as a dull white layer over the metal.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on June 18, 2018, 04:59:58 pm
My first reaction to this was "what do you expect with Swiss OLE? How may soggy underwater tunnels do they have?" But that's unfair - Furrer+Frey have many years' experience of fitting their kit all over Europe. In fact they are rather proud of its corrosion resistance, calling it "fit and forget" (though that phrase is usually unjustified hubris).

One place where corrosion is a specific problem with conductor rail (all systems, I suspect) is electrochemically between the conductor wire (copper alloy) and the beam (aluminium alloy). They squirt magic grease over this area to keep the air out, which doesn't sound to me like the height of high-tech. I can imagine that in this hyper-humid tunnel that could need to be inspected or re-done quite often.

But I hope the NR quote of:
Quote
"We are taking this opportunity to build on the modernisation work delivered in the tunnel during autumn 2016, including maintaining the new equipment and drainage system and removing redundant cables and telecoms equipment."

Network Rail said the maintenance of the new equipment mainly involves cleaning the conductor beam system.

It said it carries out maintenance work in the tunnel every year and that this will now form part of the annual process.
  doesn't really mean it will be closed for three weeks every year.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on June 18, 2018, 08:18:05 pm
Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?

Absolute tosh I'm afraid. Ever seen *aluminium* rust?


Its called cathodic reaction, aluminium and copper are not a good mix also aluminium and stainless steel will react.


The conductor beam is aluminium with the copper alloy contact wire inserted into (to all tense and purposes) a grove, stainless steel nuts n bolts are used to join beam section together and attach it to the registration arms.


An anti oxidising grease should be applied as the wire is placed into the "grove" however this is not a popular thing to do by the guys installing it, its very messy and slippery making the contact wire hard to handle,  not saying this the issue.


I suspect some corrosion has been noticed during maintainance, although the OLE is not energised or in use there is still a requirement for it to be inspected and maintained


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on June 18, 2018, 10:16:17 pm

Word has it that, since the week-end, the wires are now live to Wootton Basset.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on June 18, 2018, 11:19:49 pm
Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?

Absolute tosh I'm afraid. Ever seen *aluminium* rust?

It does't go brown in the way iron does, but it does oxidise in certain conditions. Unfortunately the corrosion products are white - very similar in colour to the metal so it is not as easy to spot at a quick glance. In normal conditions the oxide forms a protective coating on the surface, but in agressive conditions this is washed away exposing more metal. 

As ET points out the presence of other metals can make things worse.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on June 19, 2018, 08:52:41 am
Japanese motorcycles of the 1980s were notorious for forming white corrosion where steel bolts were used in aluminium engine casings. It's quite a common phenomenon.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on June 19, 2018, 01:43:31 pm
The problem is common, then. I'm sure some form of high-tech solution could be found using nuclear isotopes and a million pound machine with flashing lights, and a "ping" noise. But if smearing everything with loads from rendered down badgers does the trick, why not?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on June 19, 2018, 01:54:40 pm
YMustelidMV!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on July 02, 2018, 09:16:21 pm
I believe the Footbridge at Reading West was taken down over the weekend


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Jason on July 03, 2018, 06:27:39 am
I believe the Footbridge at Reading West was taken down over the weekend

It was indeed gone yesterday morning.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bobm on July 03, 2018, 10:54:43 am
Reading West - July 2014

(http://www.mbob.co.uk/rforum/rdwjul14.jpg)

Reading West - July 2018

(http://www.mbob.co.uk/rforum/rdw2.png)

(http://www.mbob.co.uk/rforum/rdw4.png)

New footbridge under construction

(http://www.mbob.co.uk/rforum/rdw3.png)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on July 03, 2018, 03:12:29 pm
Quote
New footbridge under construction

(http://www.mbob.co.uk/rforum/rdw3.png)


I thought RBC and Network Rail hadn't agreed on a design/location yet?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bobm on July 03, 2018, 03:27:54 pm
I suspect this is a "temporary" structure which doesn't require permission.  However I understand there is a disgruntled householder who isn't happy that the base at one side is almost in his garden.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: YouKnowNothing on July 03, 2018, 04:12:51 pm

for those of you that doubted that Network Rail would install something in a tunnel that could rust..... the minister has confirmed it-
I saw this on the BBC and thought you should see it:

Severn Tunnel electrification kit deteriorating, minister admits - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-politics-44690614

Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?
:)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on July 03, 2018, 05:06:07 pm
I suspect this is a "temporary" structure which doesn't require permission.  However I understand there is a disgruntled householder who isn't happy that the base at one side is almost in his garden.
It could also just be a temporary structure to carry services (that were previously carried on the old footbridge), rather than an actual temporary footbridge.

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Tim on July 03, 2018, 05:40:15 pm

It is an extremely harsh environment 

Made worse I expect by running diesel trains in the tunnel which chuck out acidic gases


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on July 03, 2018, 08:51:51 pm

for those of you that doubted that Network Rail would install something in a tunnel that could rust..... the minister has confirmed it-
I saw this on the BBC and thought you should see it:

Severn Tunnel electrification kit deteriorating, minister admits - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-politics-44690614

Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?
:)


I did post earlier that the construction team were informed of the harsh conditions and they did see example of existing equipment; from a brief chat I have had with someone involved in the project they have been montoring the install and there are areas of concern.   Also the lessons are being learnt to determin the levels of inspection, maintainance and what the renewals polocy should be (ie 10, 20, 30 years etc)



It is an extremely harsh environment 

Made worse I expect by running diesel trains in the tunnel which chuck out acidic gases

That will have limited effects, it more the damp atmospher in the tunnel


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on July 03, 2018, 09:03:58 pm
Quote
Also the lessons are being learnt to determine the levels of inspection, maintenance and what the renewals policy should be (ie 10, 20, 30 years etc)


For (ie 10, 20, 30 years etc) read (ie 5, 10, 15 months etc) would be more appropriate.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bobm on July 04, 2018, 04:47:07 pm
I suspect this is a "temporary" structure which doesn't require permission.  However I understand there is a disgruntled householder who isn't happy that the base at one side is almost in his garden.
It could also just be a temporary structure to carry services (that were previously carried on the old footbridge), rather than an actual temporary footbridge.

Paul

That's a thought.   Although the new exit onto Oxford Road connects to the bottom of the structure which spans the track so a footbridge is a possibility to my thinking.

(http://www.mbob.co.uk/rforum/rdw6.jpg)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on July 04, 2018, 05:59:41 pm
I suspect this is a "temporary" structure which doesn't require permission.  However I understand there is a disgruntled householder who isn't happy that the base at one side is almost in his garden.

It's not in his garden then.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 06, 2018, 05:53:20 pm
Patchway footbridge was removed on 05 July 2018 and a temporary structure erected in its place.  Photographs on the Cornwall Railway Society site down the page here: http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/news---latest-reports-and-photographs


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 06, 2018, 06:05:28 pm
Patchway footbridge was removed on 05 July 2018 and a temporary structure erected in its place.  Photographs on the Cornwall Railway Society site down the page here: http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/news---latest-reports-and-photographs

I suspect linking to http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/news---latest-reports-and-photographs/5th-july-2018 might be more permanent.

Interesting question on the page about installation of the old footbridge at the next station to the west.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 06, 2018, 07:46:00 pm
Patchway footbridge was removed on 05 July 2018 and a temporary structure erected in its place.  Photographs on the Cornwall Railway Society site down the page here: http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/news---latest-reports-and-photographs

I suspect linking to http://www.cornwallrailwaysociety.org.uk/news---latest-reports-and-photographs/5th-july-2018 might be more permanent.

Interesting question on the page about installation of the old footbridge at the next station to the west.
I think it will still progress down the page as time passes.....


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on July 11, 2018, 11:45:28 am
Looks like some wires are starting to go up between the 2 Newbury stations.

I understood that a 3 week blockade is due to start on Monday 16th, but info on National Rail Enquiries now seems to suggest that a "peak hours" train service will run between the 16th and the 20th. Info pasted as follows:

Local Services:

Newbury - Reading:

Until 22:00 each night, local services will run an amended service during morning and evening peak times only, with trains making an additional stop at Reading West.

An amended service will run between Theale and Reading.

Replacement buses will run throughout the day between Newbury and Reading and Theale and Bedwyn. During morning and evening peaks, replacement buses will also run between Newbury and Didcot Parkway as well as express buses between Didcot Parkway and Newbury, and also Reading and Thatcham.

After 22:00 each night, no train services will run between Newbury and Reading. Replacement buses will operate between Newbury and Reading.

Anyone know what's really going on? The National Rail journey planner seems to suggest it's all buses!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on July 11, 2018, 12:38:21 pm
 It means peak alterations between Reading and Theale, eg the 17:06 from Paddington stops additionally at Reading West.



The fact this has been written straight under the 'Newbury - Reading' section does appear to make it a little confusing


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on July 11, 2018, 01:05:39 pm
From what I can see in my area it looks as if most of the overhead knitting is complete from the western portal of the Sodbury tunnel to just short of BPW station itself with just the operational overrun through Westerleigh Junction towards Yate station to see installation of OH wires. The electrical feeder station at Westerleigh looks to be complete and 16 of 24 transformers (my guess) installed on steel uprights on each of the 3 entries and exits to and from the junction itself. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on July 11, 2018, 02:01:42 pm
From what I can see in my area it looks as if most of the overhead knitting is complete from the western portal of the Sodbury tunnel to just short of BPW station itself with just the operational overrun through Westerleigh Junction towards Yate station to see installation of OH wires. The electrical feeder station at Westerleigh looks to be complete and 16 of 24 transformers (my guess) installed on steel uprights on each of the 3 entries and exits to and from the junction itself. 

When I went along the M4 yesterday the string was still not in place over the M4 bridge.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on July 11, 2018, 02:42:17 pm
From what I can see in my area it looks as if most of the overhead knitting is complete from the western portal of the Sodbury tunnel to just short of BPW station itself with just the operational overrun through Westerleigh Junction towards Yate station to see installation of OH wires. The electrical feeder station at Westerleigh looks to be complete and 16 of 24 transformers (my guess) installed on steel uprights on each of the 3 entries and exits to and from the junction itself. 
When I went along the M4 yesterday the string was still not in place over the M4 bridge.

Well, the M4 bridge is not far short of BPW anyway.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on July 11, 2018, 03:33:32 pm
Quote
It means peak alterations between Reading and Theale, eg the 17:06 from Paddington stops additionally at Reading West.

Yes, but all other info to hand (journey planners, Network Rail updates etc) currently suggest there are no trains at all for the 3 weeks starting Mon 16th between Reading (or maybe, Theale) and Bedwyn.

That's also what the Beeb were saying last night on South Today.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on July 11, 2018, 07:58:58 pm
That's correct, no trains between Theale and Bedwyn for those 3 weeks, with no trains between Reading and Theale after 22:00. The same as what has been happening for all the recent closures


Quote
Newbury - Reading:

Until 22:00 each night, local services will run an amended service during morning and evening peak times only, with trains making an additional stop at Reading West.

This is a little misleading and refers to the Theale - Reading 'local services', and not Newbury to Reading


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on July 11, 2018, 10:31:03 pm
I'd say more than a little misleading, as the whole section that I pasted was headed Newbury-Reading.

In addition, this statement:
Quote
After 22:00 each night, no train services will run between Newbury and Reading
also makes it sound very much like trains would be running on that route during the day.

Hey, ho - I guess they're not and it's just a poor piece of communication.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ray951 on July 12, 2018, 09:04:26 am
Apparently electricification to Cardiff isn't going to be completed until June/July 2019, the last estimated date was, I believe, Dec 2018.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 12, 2018, 11:05:00 am
Cross posted from the May/December 2018 timetable topic...

There is no doubt this has bought Network Rail extra time to get the infrastructure works completed but no one will talk about how late they are running with these just that its better to delay the introduction of the new timetable.
Think this confirms my thoughts above:

Modern Railways Roger Ford on Twitter:

Electrification to Cardiff has been delayed to June/July 2019.

So don’t be surprised if the May 19 timetable change comes and goes with no major timetable change on the GW network.

A quote on the WNXX Forum yesterday (11/07/2018) from a GWR employee:
Quote
Mark Hopwood informed us this afternoon that electrification through to Cardiff has been put back, possibly to June/July 2019. The IET and 802 delivery plan will stay on schedule with considerably more diesel mileage than planned.

...so expect many announcements ".....train service has been cancelled due to shortage of fuel." :P


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on July 21, 2018, 07:33:07 pm
Is it likely that electrifying Swindon to Bristol, Didcot to Oxford and Parkway to Meads will happen in CP6


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 25, 2018, 09:26:43 pm
Does anybody local know how the electrification work between Southcote Junction and Newbury is progressing in the current blockade?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on July 26, 2018, 08:43:58 am
There's a very detailed thread running on this on the RailUK Forum:
https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/great-western-electrification-progress.83452/page-248#post-3560132 (https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/great-western-electrification-progress.83452/page-248#post-3560132)

From my local observations, wires have been going up over the last week between the two Newbury stations, and between Southcote Junction and Theale. The thread linked above suggests they are also going up between Reading West and Southcote.

Barring a few short gaps (eg, to the east of the new Racecourse Bridge in Newbury), the wires were already pretty much up between Newbury Racecourse and Theale.

There has also been work going on in Newbury Station itself, with alterations to the platform canopies, for example. The old footbridge came down during one of the previous blocks.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 26, 2018, 08:52:42 am

From my local observations, wires have been going up over the last week between the two Newbury stations, and between Southcote Junction and Theale. The thread linked above suggests they are also going up between Reading West and Southcote.

Barring a few short gaps (eg, to the east of the new Racecourse Bridge in Newbury), the wires were already pretty much up between Newbury Racecourse and Theale.

There has also been work going on in Newbury Station itself, with alterations to the platform canopies, for example. The old footbridge came down during one of the previous blocks.

Many thanks for that update - sounds like it's making good progress.  Is there a measure of "where they are" versus "where they should be" - i.e. ahead or behind program?   At the start of this month they were said to be very well ahead - indeed they were unsure if the final 4 day closure in November would be needed, but I have no current intelligence on that - whether they've continued to surge ahead of plan, kept plodding along evenly, or had to use up some of the gain if any element shave taken unexpectedly long.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on July 26, 2018, 12:32:35 pm
Thanks for that update TC.  I'll have a look at the website you have mentioned.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on July 31, 2018, 11:16:45 am
Can anybody help? I was asked about how for trains now run from Paddington to Temple Meads on wires before switching. Got to admit I was not sure. Anybody know the latest?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on July 31, 2018, 11:23:21 am
Can anybody help? I was asked about how for trains now run from Paddington to Temple Meads on wires before switching. Got to admit I was not sure. Anybody know the latest?

Currently around the Didcot area?   Have been switched on and tested to just beyond Swindon.  From there on to Thingley there's still a lot of work to do in places, and I think it will be electric to Bristol Parkway before to Chippenham.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on July 31, 2018, 12:47:22 pm
Yes, I should have said Parkway, not Temple Meads. Didcot was certainly not running electric trains mid April but that was some time ago, even allowing for the slow progress that the electrification is making.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on July 31, 2018, 01:56:53 pm
Yes, I should have said Parkway, not Temple Meads. Didcot was certainly not running electric trains mid April but that was some time ago, even allowing for the slow progress that the electrification is making.

Electric trains have been running from Didcot since the beginning of the year. I had my first run on a GW class 387 on 1P20 Didcot to Padd on 5th January. IETs were also running on AC from Didcot from the beginning of January - up trains stopping at Didcot usually switch from diesel to AC in platform 2, non-stoppers switch over on the move east of Moreton Cutting. All down IETs switch from AC to diesel east of Moreton Cutting.

As previously mentioned the wiring from Milton Junction to Wootton Bassett was energised earlier this month. I've seen entry into service in September suggested in numerous places but no actual date mentioned. Presumably then the diesel/AC changeover point will move to Swindon as most services stop there.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on July 31, 2018, 02:24:40 pm
Thanks for the information. My IET from Didcot to Bristol definitely had the pantographs down as it came into Didcot and that is what my assumption was based on. This was mid April so I guess there was some other reason for it's diesel running.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on July 31, 2018, 02:31:59 pm
Possibly related to my question about diesel-only here? (Which bobm kindly answered...)

http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=18792.msg243135#msg243135 (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=18792.msg243135#msg243135)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on July 31, 2018, 03:00:49 pm
Swindon will be some what of a milestone in this project, as the first trip that was planned as such can run - the Cheltenham Spa services are now ready for timetabled IET services, under 1 year early.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Wizard on July 31, 2018, 08:40:10 pm
Thanks for the information. My IET from Didcot to Bristol definitely had the pantographs down as it came into Didcot and that is what my assumption was based on. This was mid April so I guess there was some other reason for it's diesel running.

IETs never arrive at Didcot with the pantograph raised, they are lowered at Moreton Cutting around 2 miles to the east of the station to prevent any electrical overrunning.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on July 31, 2018, 09:00:30 pm
Thanks for the information. My IET from Didcot to Bristol definitely had the pantographs down as it came into Didcot and that is what my assumption was based on. This was mid April so I guess there was some other reason for it's diesel running.

IETs never arrive at Didcot with the pantograph raised, they are lowered at Moreton Cutting around 2 miles to the east of the station to prevent any electrical overrunning.

That does rather explain it. Many thanks


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on August 02, 2018, 11:19:07 am

IETs never arrive at Didcot with the pantograph raised, they are lowered at Moreton Cutting around 2 miles to the east of the station to prevent any electrical overrunning.


That does rather explain it. Many thanks

ET's comment (post 246) was that electric operation West of Didcot would start on Sept 18.

I imagine that he's the one that will be switching it all on!

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on August 02, 2018, 01:59:22 pm
Further comment to me today - seems to be commonly know, but I have not seen it here.     From Royal Wootton Bassett the power will be switched on as far at the outskirts of Chippenham, but the final bit to Thingley will be some considerable time later (a year or two?).   Confirmation, any experts?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on August 02, 2018, 03:11:29 pm
That's what I've heard, stopping at Cocklebury Bridge (or whatever its called), with power feeds running from Melksham along/under ground?, they may not continue until they decide to carry on to Bath


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on August 03, 2018, 09:37:38 am
Vale of White Horse has refused permission to demolish Steventon Bridge:
http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/16394893.victory-in-rail-bridge-battle-but-have-they-won-the-war/?ref=rss

What the implications for electric running to Swindon, given that the wires are now live? Does this mean a ludicrous speed restriction for years to come while this is argued about?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on August 03, 2018, 10:01:42 am
This is just getting ridiculous.  A project to improve the railway for all gets the boot put in by a few.  Reading up about the bridge concerned, its not even a good example of Brunels work.  Politics at play me thinks.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on August 03, 2018, 10:03:38 am
Vale of White Horse has refused permission to demolish Steventon Bridge:
http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/16394893.victory-in-rail-bridge-battle-but-have-they-won-the-war/?ref=rss

What the implications for electric running to Swindon, given that the wires are now live? Does this mean a ludicrous speed restriction for years to come while this is argued about?
Only in this country would something like this happen...backward Britain.

Chris Grayling needs to get this overturned for the sake of progress on this already wretched electrification project.

Brunel would have been the first person to have stuck dynamite underneath it for the sake of progressing the railway.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: PhilWakely on August 03, 2018, 10:08:06 am
Vale of White Horse has refused permission to demolish Steventon Bridge:
http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/16394893.victory-in-rail-bridge-battle-but-have-they-won-the-war/?ref=rss

What the implications for electric running to Swindon, given that the wires are now live? Does this mean a ludicrous speed restriction for years to come while this is argued about?

What with this and the Goring Gap - where next?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on August 03, 2018, 10:37:21 am
Vale of White Horse has refused permission to demolish Steventon Bridge:
http://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/16394893.victory-in-rail-bridge-battle-but-have-they-won-the-war/?ref=rss

What the implications for electric running to Swindon, given that the wires are now live? Does this mean a ludicrous speed restriction for years to come while this is argued about?

What with this and the Goring Gap - where next?

Chippenham Station footbridge  ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on August 03, 2018, 10:56:38 am
Perhaps Didcot Railway Centre could provide steam traction to shunt IEPs from Didcot station to the other side of the bridge. That should keep them happy!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on August 03, 2018, 11:17:16 am
What an excellent idea. As good as one of the comments in the Oxford Mail article:

Quote
Perhaps we could start a competition. Steal a brick, post a photograph of the gap left, and the winner is the one who takes the last one before it collapses, like a giant "Jengo" (?)[sic]

Unfortunately it also punishes people from the area who are supporting the development so perhaps I should delete this post before somebody takes me seriously.

I suppose the villagers could be given the big pile of bricks and they could re-build the bridge somewhere, in a field, as a monument to stupidity ?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on August 03, 2018, 12:05:35 pm

From the press reports, the local objections seem more to do with the village being cut in two for 10 months during reconstruction. The listing is just a happy coincidence!

What should reasonably have been proposed is a temporary, Bailey type bridge alongside the old one.

A wider span, prefabricated steel permanent replacement would be quicker to build as the abutments' construction sites would be well away from the tracks and wires in use (and allow later 4-tracking).

The LC's might also have been closed if the village road links were improved.

A pity no one in authority in NR had the slightest interest in the areas through which the GWML passes, just like the AoNB problem.

A classic case of change mis-management.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on August 03, 2018, 01:03:45 pm
I'd say it is a classic case of planning committees dodging unpopular decisions that they know will be overturned on appeal, but they won't then be blamed for.  The 'village cut in two' argument should be taken with the pinch of salt: the railway is to the south of the village, with very few houses on the 'wrong side', many of which are usually accessed by the level crossings anyway. A temporary bridge may be possible, I couldn't say. But other places have suffered worse severance from bridge closures. The situation should be manageable.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Wizard on August 03, 2018, 01:25:11 pm
60mph restriction to electric stock in place is the rumour. But because of how GW-ATP works this will actually be a restriction of 60 for all ATP fitted stock, so even on diesel mode the IETs will still have to slow down.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on August 03, 2018, 01:32:44 pm
Meanwhile the newts are no doubt breeding, but not of course breeding to the extent that they become no longer endangered. Indeed the present drought  must be increasing the hazards to newts.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on August 03, 2018, 01:37:57 pm
The newts are getting together with the bats to move somewhere between Bicester and Bletchely...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Richard Fairhurst on August 03, 2018, 02:35:06 pm
I'd say it is a classic case of planning committees dodging unpopular decisions that they know will be overturned on appeal, but they won't then be blamed for.  The 'village cut in two' argument should be taken with the pinch of salt: the railway is to the south of the village, with very few houses on the 'wrong side', many of which are usually accessed by the level crossings anyway. A temporary bridge may be possible, I couldn't say. But other places have suffered worse severance from bridge closures. The situation should be manageable.

I can see some of the villagers' logic. AIUI they say the pubs get a lot of business from Milton Park, and certainly looking on Street View (I've only ever been to Steventon once!) the two pubs closest to the bridge have big car parks. Removing the direct road route would hit that trade. Village pubs are pretty borderline these days in any case - I can envisage a scenario in which a ten-month Steventon Bridge closure leads to one of the pubs closing, and once they've gone you don't get them back.

That's not to say that Steventon Bridge should stay as it is forever, or that there isn't some sort of feasible solution (a temporary visitors' car park and turning space south of the bridge, coupled with a pedestrian/cycle bridge, would be my first thought).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on August 03, 2018, 03:06:52 pm
I certainly sympathise with them over the difficulties you mention. The pubs are certainly very dependent upon lunchtime trade from Milton Park, and probably Harwell as well (they were regular venues when I worked at Harwell 10 years ago). However, my sympathy is somewhat tested by their approach they have taken, namely to find ludicrous arguments for not replacing the bridge rather than focusing on finding solutions to the problems replacement will bring. When NR gets the decision overturned they will simply have to put up with whatever NR does, and there won't be much time to find alternative ways of doing things.

Your suggestion of a temporary car park south of the bridge is a good one. I would also suggest that this should give an incentive for sorting out the proposed cycle path between Steventon and Milton Park adjacent to the railway, something there is demand for but which has made little progress for years. Perhaps shuttle buses using the level crossing could be considered?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on August 03, 2018, 03:17:22 pm
I think most of the objections have been around the time the bridge would be out, rather than loss of the bridge itself, although these have not been zero. Historic England for one does not object.

Unfortuately there is no open land to put in a temporary bridge, although maybe there would be for pedstrians only. The only theoretical short diversion route is Stocks Lane, and this is an unsuitable single track without any passing places, too narrow even for Google to have taken its vehicle down (comically the sign at the entry just says 'Unsuitable for HGV').


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on August 03, 2018, 05:34:58 pm

I would only add that the cost of an early agreed compromise is usually far less than the cost of conflict and delay.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: PhilWakely on August 03, 2018, 06:10:42 pm

From the press reports, the local objections seem more to do with the village being cut in two for 10 months during reconstruction. The listing is just a happy coincidence!

What should reasonably have been proposed is a temporary, Bailey type bridge alongside the old one.


No doubt there would then be further objections due to the noise generated by vehicles going over the bridge.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on August 03, 2018, 06:19:50 pm
Since, according to Steventon News (http://www.steventon.info/railway.html),  Vale planners recommended acceptance and the Council went against their recommendation, then it is almost certain to be overturned on appeal. The councillors almost certainly know this, but are trying not to upset the locals.
 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on August 03, 2018, 07:46:18 pm
May not be coincidental that the Vale council election is next year. Although presuming this goes to appeal it will cost more money.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on August 03, 2018, 09:11:34 pm
May not be coincidental that the Vale council election is next year. Although presuming this goes to appeal it will cost more money.

Ahh what money when votes are at stake! Or am I being too cynical?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on August 21, 2018, 06:58:44 pm
Bits of extension to Platform 3 stacked up at Didcot ... it has been taking a while

(https://i.gyazo.com/6024718e030239daf1ef6a094642c9d2.png)

Also Station Road in Didcot will be closed to the west of the station from 31st August 2018 for 3 days in connection with the installation of the new pedestrian footbridge. Signed local traffic diversion in place (Foxhall Road/Broadway/Haydon Road), delays inevitable.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on September 12, 2018, 08:55:56 pm
I have been reliably informed that the juice has been switched on as far as the Neutral Sections at Wotton Bassett.  There are some on load tests to be done before permitted for passenger train use; however the current slow down in timetable changes may mean GWR cannot run the IEPs in electric mode.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on September 12, 2018, 09:13:29 pm
I travelled from Swindon to Bristol parkway today.  All the string appears (as far as you can tell from a moving train) to be in place as far as Chipping Sodbury. From there to Westerleigh it seems to be work in progress then no string from there to Parkway.   

I have been reliably informed that the juice has been switched on as far as the Neutral Sections at Wotton Bassett.  There are some on load tests to be done before permitted for passenger train use; however the current slow down in timetable changes may mean GWR cannot run the IEPs in electric mode.

What stops them from running in electric mode to the existing timetable?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on September 12, 2018, 10:29:16 pm
I travelled from Swindon to Bristol parkway today.  All the string appears (as far as you can tell from a moving train) to be in place as far as Chipping Sodbury. From there to Westerleigh it seems to be work in progress then no string from there to Parkway.   

I have been reliably informed that the juice has been switched on as far as the Neutral Sections at Wotton Bassett.  There are some on load tests to be done before permitted for passenger train use; however the current slow down in timetable changes may mean GWR cannot run the IEPs in electric mode.

What stops them from running in electric mode to the existing timetable?


Apart from running times being quicker, there is also on board data that need to be set so the train and drive know when to pan down / up


It is only a may mean, I am sure there will be a work around


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: a-driver on September 13, 2018, 03:26:31 am
I travelled from Swindon to Bristol parkway today.  All the string appears (as far as you can tell from a moving train) to be in place as far as Chipping Sodbury. From there to Westerleigh it seems to be work in progress then no string from there to Parkway.   

I have been reliably informed that the juice has been switched on as far as the Neutral Sections at Wotton Bassett.  There are some on load tests to be done before permitted for passenger train use; however the current slow down in timetable changes may mean GWR cannot run the IEPs in electric mode.

What stops them from running in electric mode to the existing timetable?


Apart from running times being quicker, there is also on board data that need to be set so the train and drive know when to pan down / up


It is only a may mean, I am sure there will be a work around


Pan up and pan down is currently done manually by the driver, lineside signage is provided. The automatic system (APCo) is currently disabled as this is causing interference with the signalling equipment


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on September 13, 2018, 06:22:38 am
I would be disappointed if the wires are energised and ready for use and not used. This project has already been a huge embarrassment without it being discovered that trains were still running on diesel when they could be running on electric.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on September 13, 2018, 10:37:54 am
We have the Big Shutdown at Bristol Parkway coming up, after which I assume the electric will be complete from PAD to BPW. No need for pan up/down, so presumably they will be able to run electric mode to BPW.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: a-driver on September 13, 2018, 11:53:26 am
I would be disappointed if the wires are energised and ready for use and not used. This project has already been a huge embarrassment without it being discovered that trains were still running on diesel when they could be running on electric.

I believe they are energised but there’s load testing to be carried out amongst other things. It’s like a “settling in” period. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on September 13, 2018, 11:59:55 am
I would be disappointed if the wires are energised and ready for use and not used. This project has already been a huge embarrassment without it being discovered that trains were still running on diesel when they could be running on electric.
I believe they are energised but there’s load testing to be carried out amongst other things. It’s like a “settling in” period. 
I expect there will be a lot of testing to take place before passenger trains take the juice from the OHLE, but would hope we wouldn't have to wait until the May TT change to see IETs running on electric rather than diesel heading west past Didcot.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Wizard on September 13, 2018, 12:03:20 pm
I’m confident that IETs will be running on electric as far as Bristol Parkway after the Christmas/New Year shutdown.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on September 13, 2018, 12:40:03 pm
It'll need to be signed off for passenger use by the ORR, which I guess will be around Christmas time, similar to last years sign off of the Maidenhead to Didcot section.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on September 13, 2018, 12:43:22 pm
Had letter to my home address from Network Rail, addressed Occupier, Dear Neighbour, detailing the forthcoming works during the forthcoming closure which quotes, "This work will enable new and upgraded trains with more seats to run under electric power to Bristol Parkway station, which will be quieter for residents living near the railway."

The letter carries a reference 120m18c.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on September 13, 2018, 05:19:55 pm
It'll need to be signed off for passenger use by the ORR, which I guess will be around Christmas time, similar to last years sign off of the Maidenhead to Didcot section.

Not quite as complex a sign off, the Maidenhead - Didcot NR had to have the full isolation and maintenance instructions in place and briefed to staff.


I would be disappointed if the wires are energised and ready for use and not used. This project has already been a huge embarrassment without it being discovered that trains were still running on diesel when they could be running on electric.
I believe they are energised but there’s load testing to be carried out amongst other things. It’s like a “settling in” period. 
I expect there will be a lot of testing to take place before passenger trains take the juice from the OHLE, but would hope we wouldn't have to wait until the May TT change to see IETs running on electric rather than diesel heading west past Didcot.

Yes there is testing to be done, the fact that it is live over an operational railway means some key tests have been done and signed off.

The introduction to passenger use is not only a NR action, once NR has accepted it from the construction team, the TOC needs to make an application to run electric traction.  Its process, I expect trains run electric will just happen with out too much of a fan fare 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightf48544 on September 14, 2018, 10:37:30 am
I’m confident that IETs will be running on electric as far as Bristol Parkway after the Christmas/New Year shutdown.

Has the Steventon Bridge problem been resolved?

I  understand it requires either a 60 mph restriction with pan  up  or  diesel and pan down for IETs, due to sharp changes in height of contact wire.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on September 14, 2018, 11:12:03 am

There's a UK Rail forum report of two return journeys by 80x's from Reading to Swindon under ac power on 1/9, early a.m.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on September 14, 2018, 03:07:04 pm
And another last night, I've heard on ther grapevine


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on September 19, 2018, 08:23:13 pm
And another last night, I've heard on ther grapevine

Almost seems like they know what they are doing now :-)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: BBM on September 21, 2018, 11:49:44 am
Not sure if this is the right place to post in the Coffee Shop but in RailUKForums there's a thread about electric loco 87002 working a GBRf charity passenger charter under its own power last night from Didcot West End to Paddington: https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/class-87-on-the-gwml.170024/ (https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/class-87-on-the-gwml.170024/)

Post #18 has a hellfire photo of the loco at PAD!  :)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on September 21, 2018, 01:03:17 pm
Not sure if this is the right place to post in the Coffee Shop but in RailUKForums there's a thread about electric loco 87002 working a GBRf charity passenger charter under its own power last night from Didcot West End to Paddington: https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/class-87-on-the-gwml.170024/ (https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/class-87-on-the-gwml.170024/)

Post #18 has a hellfire photo of the loco at PAD!  :)


I don't know where the right place is - and I designed the original darned system!

I am tempted by Preserved railway lines, Railtours and other rail based attractions (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?board=47.0) as it's a rail tour ... in fact I may split it off to there this evening (if I don't fall asleep first after a day's moving!)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightf48544 on September 21, 2018, 03:44:11 pm
Saw a picture of it, running light through Taplow last night at the Marlow and District Railway Society meeting. Asked how it got onto the GWML as there is no 25Kv connection between WCML and GWML. Allegedly dragged by a 66 to Hayes(?) loop.

Now that raises a question about GWML electrification why were

 Acton ML to Acton Wells (NLL),
 Acton Wells to West London Jn
 Acton Wells to Cricklewood Curve Jn and Silkstream Jn
 Acton Canal Wharf Jn to Acton Branch Jn

not electrified?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on September 21, 2018, 03:50:21 pm
I believe some, if not all, are still scheduled to be done at some point, though not part of the GWEP - most electrically hauled freight coming off the NLL would still need to transfer to diesel in Acton Yard though.

Given the recent costs of electrification I think we can wave goodbye to any wholesale move from diesel to electrically hauled freight trains for a while.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on September 28, 2018, 08:21:14 am
Word elsewhere that the juice is due to be turned on to Southcote Junction on 14th Oct and on the 21st to Newbury.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chuffed on September 28, 2018, 09:08:54 am
Came through Filton on the XC diversion from Patchway yesterday and began to have hallucinations about the possibility of Four Track Sooner than Expected. A new name for the FTSE ! It seemed to be not far short of finishing touches in places and there was a sense of urgency about the works even at 4.30pm on a gorgeous late September afternoon.There are three months before the end of the year. Is an early finish feasible or am I away with the fairies again ?
I am sure I will quickly be brought back to reality by someone more knowledgeable on this forum.
Mods...you may wish to move this to the Four Track Forum as there is no electrification planned for this bit!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on September 28, 2018, 10:18:12 pm
Mods...you may wish to move this to the Four Track Forum as there is no electrification planned for this bit!

Ah, but surely there is? The work was "paused", not cancelled, and a great deal of the preparatory work has been done. It would have made perfect sense to have incorporated electrification into the four-tracking work, as a lot of the issues that have slowed the work down elsewhere probably had to be fixed anyway. Even if the route through Bath stays diesel only, much would be gained from wiring up Filton Bank.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: rogerw on September 30, 2018, 11:48:38 am
I travelled from reading to Westbury today.  Overhead wiring is complete except for a section east of Newbury racecourse.  Electrification ends just west of Newbury station at MP53½.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on September 30, 2018, 02:39:10 pm
Quote
Overhead wiring is complete except for a section east of Newbury racecourse

You refer to the gap at Kennet Viaduct, where there are power lines that cross the track (not far above where the OHLE wires will be once installed).

A lot of contractors and plant on the site when I had a look around yesterday. Not sure how they're going to resolve, but assume that whatever the plan is it will be carried out during the final blockade (8th Oct for 4 days).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on September 30, 2018, 05:08:02 pm
Mods...you may wish to move this to the Four Track Forum as there is no electrification planned for this bit!

Ah, but surely there is? The work was "paused", not cancelled, and a great deal of the preparatory work has been done. It would have made perfect sense to have incorporated electrification into the four-tracking work, as a lot of the issues that have slowed the work down elsewhere probably had to be fixed anyway. Even if the route through Bath stays diesel only, much would be gained from wiring up Filton Bank.
It's always been my understanding that Filton Bank is to be electrified after the four-tracking is complete. Not sure whether this includes the whole of the "Filton diamond" (don't know its proper name, sorry) and Dr Day's Junction.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on October 01, 2018, 01:12:28 pm
Mods...you may wish to move this to the Four Track Forum as there is no electrification planned for this bit!

Ah, but surely there is? The work was "paused", not cancelled, and a great deal of the preparatory work has been done. It would have made perfect sense to have incorporated electrification into the four-tracking work, as a lot of the issues that have slowed the work down elsewhere probably had to be fixed anyway. Even if the route through Bath stays diesel only, much would be gained from wiring up Filton Bank.
It's always been my understanding that Filton Bank is to be electrified after the four-tracking is complete. Not sure whether this includes the whole of the "Filton diamond" (don't know its proper name, sorry) and Dr Day's Junction.

I was under the impression that Filton Bank was on-hold, along with Chippenham to Bristol and Temple Meads itself, as there would be little use for it until there were regular Bristol to London services via Parkway.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 01, 2018, 01:23:39 pm
Mods...you may wish to move this to the Four Track Forum as there is no electrification planned for this bit!

Ah, but surely there is? The work was "paused", not cancelled, and a great deal of the preparatory work has been done. It would have made perfect sense to have incorporated electrification into the four-tracking work, as a lot of the issues that have slowed the work down elsewhere probably had to be fixed anyway. Even if the route through Bath stays diesel only, much would be gained from wiring up Filton Bank.
It's always been my understanding that Filton Bank is to be electrified after the four-tracking is complete. Not sure whether this includes the whole of the "Filton diamond" (don't know its proper name, sorry) and Dr Day's Junction.

I was under the impression that Filton Bank was on-hold, along with Chippenham to Bristol and Temple Meads itself, as there would be little use for it until there were regular Bristol to London services via Parkway.
Yes, that's what I'm saying too! The wires will go from Temple Meads to Parkway and from there to London and Cardiff.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on October 01, 2018, 01:42:43 pm
Aren't regular services from London to BRI via BPM contained within the Jan19 (now May19ish) timetable?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on October 01, 2018, 02:03:11 pm
Yes, there appears to be some confusion here.

As Chris says, services will operate from Bristol TM via Parkway to Paddington from the 'big bang' timetable change - now moved from Jan '19 to May '19.  They will operate on diesel from Temple Meads to Parkway and electric from there.  Parkway to Temple Meads electrifcation was deferred (along with Thingly Junction to Temple Meads) so whilst it might well still happen it won't be finished for several years. 

Personally I can see electrification of both routes into Bristol Temple Meads going from 'deferred' to 'shelved'.  There's little performance benefit wiring the short section from Temple Meads to Parkway, and its hard to justify going to the bother of wiring up the complex layout at Temple Meads unless you are also wiring the route through to Thingly Junction.  I think that is doubtful due to the limited performance benefit on that stretch of track as well and the complexity of wiring Box Tunnel and the Bath area.

So, unless there is a big swing back in favour of electrification, and the route through from Birmingham to Exeter is electrified (also unlikely IMHO) then Bristol Temple Meads won't be seeing wires any time soon!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on October 01, 2018, 07:44:39 pm
Yes, there appears to be some confusion here.

As Chris says, services will operate from Bristol TM via Parkway to Paddington from the 'big bang' timetable change - now moved from Jan '19 to May '19.  They will operate on diesel from Temple Meads to Parkway and electric from there.  Parkway to Temple Meads electrifcation was deferred (along with Thingly Junction to Temple Meads) so whilst it might well still happen it won't be finished for several years. 

Personally I can see electrification of both routes into Bristol Temple Meads going from 'deferred' to 'shelved'.  There's little performance benefit wiring the short section from Temple Meads to Parkway, and its hard to justify going to the bother of wiring up the complex layout at Temple Meads unless you are also wiring the route through to Thingly Junction.  I think that is doubtful due to the limited performance benefit on that stretch of track as well and the complexity of wiring Box Tunnel and the Bath area.

So, unless there is a big swing back in favour of electrification, and the route through from Birmingham to Exeter is electrified (also unlikely IMHO) then Bristol Temple Meads won't be seeing wires any time soon!

All depends on how many marginal seats there are in Bristol at the next election!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on October 02, 2018, 01:45:26 pm
Yes, there appears to be some confusion here.

As Chris says, services will operate from Bristol TM via Parkway to Paddington from the 'big bang' timetable change - now moved from Jan '19 to May '19.  They will operate on diesel from Temple Meads to Parkway and electric from there.  Parkway to Temple Meads electrifcation was deferred (along with Thingly Junction to Temple Meads) so whilst it might well still happen it won't be finished for several years. 

Personally I can see electrification of both routes into Bristol Temple Meads going from 'deferred' to 'shelved'.  There's little performance benefit wiring the short section from Temple Meads to Parkway, and its hard to justify going to the bother of wiring up the complex layout at Temple Meads unless you are also wiring the route through to Thingly Junction.  I think that is doubtful due to the limited performance benefit on that stretch of track as well and the complexity of wiring Box Tunnel and the Bath area.

So, unless there is a big swing back in favour of electrification, and the route through from Birmingham to Exeter is electrified (also unlikely IMHO) then Bristol Temple Meads won't be seeing wires any time soon!

All depends on how many marginal seats there are in Bristol at the next election!

There's a relatively recent consultant's report kicking around somewhere, which, from memory, says that if you want Bristol suburban electrification, there are a number of big ticket items that will have to be paid for, including a new grid feeder, a new depot for the electric stock, resignalling south of Temple Meads and sorting a number of bridges including Wells Road in Bristol. The conclusion was that the numbers only added up if it were funded at a national level as part of a cross-country electrification programme.   


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on October 02, 2018, 07:53:19 pm
Its the Bath Road bridge, the Wells Road begins a few hundred metres to the south of the bridge crossing the west end Temple Meads station throat. I was once told that the estimated cost of replacing that bridge alone with the associated roadworks was £400 million as the council stipulated that it had to be 6 lanes plus pedestrian walkways and it would also mean CPO's for acquisition of land from Fowlers (M/C showroom) and Kwik-Fit(?) (tyres and exhausts).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on October 02, 2018, 09:56:46 pm
Its the Bath Road bridge, the Wells Road begins a few hundred metres to the south of the bridge crossing the west end Temple Meads station throat. I was once told that the estimated cost of replacing that bridge alone with the associated roadworks was £400 million as the council stipulated that it had to be 6 lanes plus pedestrian walkways and it would also mean CPO's for acquisition of land from Fowlers (M/C showroom) and Kwik-Fit(?) (tyres and exhausts).

Surely the railway should not have to pay for betterment for the road?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on October 03, 2018, 08:44:34 am
Its the Bath Road bridge, the Wells Road begins a few hundred metres to the south of the bridge crossing the west end Temple Meads station throat. I was once told that the estimated cost of replacing that bridge alone with the associated roadworks was £400 million as the council stipulated that it had to be 6 lanes plus pedestrian walkways and it would also mean CPO's for acquisition of land from Fowlers (M/C showroom) and Kwik-Fit(?) (tyres and exhausts).

Surely the railway should not have to pay for betterment for the road?


Ahh, but the BCC would be making a contribution supported by a Central Government grant from the roads improvement fund.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on October 03, 2018, 09:35:46 am
All depends on how many marginal seats there are in Bristol at the next election!

...none, at the last count. But Bath, on the other hand, might be.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Gordon the Blue Engine on October 04, 2018, 08:46:24 am
Remember the furore over the OHLE through Goring?  Well this is the outcome, from the Henley Standard:

"LANDOWNERS in the Goring area can apply for grants from Network Rail to improve plots that adjoin the Great Western main line through the village.

The company is offering sums of between £10,000 and £100,000 to offset the impact of the electrification of the route, which started in 2015 and prompted complaints about the “unsightly” metal gantries that were installed to hold up overhead cables.

Network Rail promised to consider installing alternative designs but progress stalled as opponents said these wouldn’t reduce the visual impact. Now the company says it wants to support any projects which would result in new woodland being planted, enhance existing woodland or improve access between wooded areas.

The deadline for applications is October 26 and applicants should be able to deliver their schemes over a four-year period.

For more information, visit www.trustforoxfordshire."


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on October 04, 2018, 11:02:30 am
I'm going to take a wild stab and guess that the URI should read https://www.trustforoxfordshire.org.uk/

They'll need to be tall trees, won't they? Isn't it the problem that the railway is on an embankment as it passes through Goebbels Gap?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightonedee on October 04, 2018, 10:34:46 pm
Quote
Posted by: Gordon the Blue Engine
Insert Quote
Remember the furore over the OHLE through Goring?  Well this is the outcome, from the Henley Standard:

"LANDOWNERS in the Goring area can apply for grants from Network Rail to improve plots that adjoin the Great Western main line through the village.

The company is offering sums of between £10,000 and £100,000 to offset the impact of the electrification of the route, which started in 2015 and prompted complaints about the “unsightly” metal gantries that were installed to hold up overhead cables.

Network Rail promised to consider installing alternative designs but progress stalled as opponents said these wouldn’t reduce the visual impact. Now the company says it wants to support any projects which would result in new woodland being planted, enhance existing woodland or improve access between wooded areas.

The deadline for applications is October 26 and applicants should be able to deliver their schemes over a four-year period.

For more information, visit www.trustforoxfordshire."

This has nothing to do with the outcry in the Goring Gap over the visual impact of the OHL.

It is offsetting for the vegetation removal all along the line necessitated by the preparatory works for electrification. This money has been on offer for some years. They have had difficulties in getting environmental groups to come up with woodland habitat to mitigate the loss of trackside trees and scrub. If you know of a suitable project (not just in Oxfordshire, but also elsewhere along the route), get in touch.

As regards reducing the visual impact, whisper it abroad here in the Gap (a beautiful part of the world!), but my guess is that NR are just waiting for the steelwork to weather from its original shiny finish to a more discreet matt grey and hope everyone forgets the fuss.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Gordon the Blue Engine on October 05, 2018, 08:55:01 am
Eightonedee may well be right, but it looks like NR have successfully sold their woodland habitat scheme to Goring as at least a partial solution to their concerns about the OHLE. 

By the way, the correct link is  www.trustforoxfordshire.org.uk/network-rail-1 (http://www.trustforoxfordshire.org.uk/network-rail-1).



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on October 06, 2018, 11:01:06 am
Quote
Overhead wiring is complete except for a section east of Newbury racecourse

You refer to the gap at Kennet Viaduct, where there are power lines that cross the track (not far above where the OHLE wires will be once installed).

A lot of contractors and plant on the site when I had a look around yesterday. Not sure how they're going to resolve, but assume that whatever the plan is it will be carried out during the final blockade (8th Oct for 4 days).

Updating my previous post....went for a look around at Kennet Viaduct earlier. Road closure at the end of Hambridge Lane due "overhead power line removal". It looked like some of the lines are already down, with those over the tracks still in place. I guess those will come down (and the missing OHLE wires will go up) during the coming week's blockade.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 07, 2018, 08:06:24 am
Quote
Overhead wiring is complete except for a section east of Newbury racecourse

You refer to the gap at Kennet Viaduct, where there are power lines that cross the track (not far above where the OHLE wires will be once installed).

A lot of contractors and plant on the site when I had a look around yesterday. Not sure how they're going to resolve, but assume that whatever the plan is it will be carried out during the final blockade (8th Oct for 4 days).

Updating my previous post....went for a look around at Kennet Viaduct earlier. Road closure at the end of Hambridge Lane due "overhead power line removal". It looked like some of the lines are already down, with those over the tracks still in place. I guess those will come down (and the missing OHLE wires will go up) during the coming week's blockade.


Dealing with the wayleaves for the DNO & TNO (Distribution Network Operator and Transmission Network Operator) where they cross the railway has been long and complex issue; some of the wayleaves date back to the 1930's where the height of the DNO/TNO above the railway was acceptable add in the mix the rail is higher due to greater ballast depth, in the it all boiled down to who was going to pay


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 07, 2018, 11:08:52 am
Updating my previous post....went for a look around at Kennet Viaduct earlier. Road closure at the end of Hambridge Lane due "overhead power line removal". It looked like some of the lines are already down, with those over the tracks still in place. I guess those will come down (and the missing OHLE wires will go up) during the coming week's blockade.

Having had a quick look at Google's latest pictures, this line appears to be an MV link (two circuits) of SSEN's from the Thatcham bulk supply point (opposite the station) or the substation behind it to the Riverside substation in Newbury. Having gone over the railway, it only runs about 400 m into town before going underground, so maybe they will now bury the whole of that section. There is a 33 kV feed between the two sites, but I think this is 11 kV so probably links the two substations, and the 33 kV line is a bit further north.

At first sight, the obvious way to increase the clearance would be taller poles, wouldn't it? But perhaps, being on an embankment, doing that here would exceed the maximum permitted pole height. At Thatcham, there do seem to be two MV lines still crossing the railway from the BSP or the substation behind it; though of course this is level ground, which eases the pole height issue.

In fact all the MV lines from there start off in cables, indoors where the switchgear now is, even if they come up onto poles within the "Thatcham Power Plant" boundary. A little to the west, several lines that must come from there too pop up out of the ground and set out across the canal. I guess digging trenches across the canal never was a popular job.

Incidentally, why is the bridge - and it is just a skew bridge - over the canalised river called a viaduct (officially Bull's Bridge Viaduct)?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on October 07, 2018, 11:58:09 am
Difficult to confirm from aerial views, but maybe it’s a viaduct structure that is used instead of an embankment for the westward continuation towards and over the next road?  Another possibility is that it was a more typical multiple arched structure when first built?

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on October 07, 2018, 12:55:09 pm
From my quick look around, and judging by what also looks like some digging sites (hard to tell as they have tent-like structures over them) I'd say the wires are going to be buried.

The pole heights already looked quite high to me (sorry, should have got a pic) due to track being on something of an embankment for the bridge over the Kennet (and the small road under-bridge at the end of Hambridge Lane).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 10, 2018, 08:25:03 pm
Updating my previous post....went for a look around at Kennet Viaduct earlier. Road closure at the end of Hambridge Lane due "overhead power line removal". It looked like some of the lines are already down, with those over the tracks still in place. I guess those will come down (and the missing OHLE wires will go up) during the coming week's blockade.

Having had a quick look at Google's latest pictures, this line appears to be an MV link (two circuits) of SSEN's from the Thatcham bulk supply point (opposite the station) or the substation behind it to the Riverside substation in Newbury. Having gone over the railway, it only runs about 400 m into town before going underground, so maybe they will now bury the whole of that section. There is a 33 kV feed between the two sites, but I think this is 11 kV so probably links the two substations, and the 33 kV line is a bit further north.

At first sight, the obvious way to increase the clearance would be taller poles, wouldn't it? But perhaps, being on an embankment, doing that here would exceed the maximum permitted pole height. At Thatcham, there do seem to be two MV lines still crossing the railway from the BSP or the substation behind it; though of course this is level ground, which eases the pole height issue.

In fact all the MV lines from there start off in cables, indoors where the switchgear now is, even if they come up onto poles within the "Thatcham Power Plant" boundary. A little to the west, several lines that must come from there too pop up out of the ground and set out across the canal. I guess digging trenches across the canal never was a popular job.


The minimum (modern) electrical safety clearance is difficult to meet, the railway requires 3 metres for the nearest DNO live parts to any of the railway OLE equipment, there is also risks on both parties of energising each others conductors in the event the DNO aerial conductors were to drop onto NR OLE conductors; and then there is the pain in the !!!! when the DNO need to maintain repair their system it is often difficult fitting them in with normal railway possession and they don't like paying for railway approved contractors to manage their access.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on October 10, 2018, 10:34:54 pm
Quote
From my quick look around, and judging by what also looks like some digging sites (hard to tell as they have tent-like structures over them) I'd say the wires are going to be buried.

The pole heights already looked quite high to me (sorry, should have got a pic) due to track being on something of an embankment for the bridge over the Kennet (and the small road under-bridge at the end of Hambridge Lane).

Had another quick look around today. The power lines are down, the last of the poles were being pulled out of the ground as I passed. The OHLE wires are up over Kennet Viaduct, which is one of the last sections to be completed between Southcote Jct and Newbury.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on October 15, 2018, 10:50:23 am
Does anyone know the latest on when IETs will use electrical power to Swindon? Earlier in this thread September was mentioned, but clearly btthat has slipped.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on October 15, 2018, 01:07:03 pm
In test conditions, now.  In passenger service, turn of the year I think.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on October 15, 2018, 03:49:40 pm
As II says, should be turn of the year and that will be down as far as Bristol Parkway.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: YouKnowNothing on October 15, 2018, 10:39:41 pm
Has there been any movement on when they expect the lines to reach Cardiff? It’s all gone quiet after they announced the delay....


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on October 16, 2018, 09:21:37 pm
Still a lot of masts to go up between Severn Tunnel and Magor.  Will the wiring taking place over Christmas just complete the English side?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 16, 2018, 11:20:54 pm
Still a lot of masts to go up between Severn Tunnel and Magor.  Will the wiring taking place over Christmas just complete the English side?

The Christmas to New Year closure of the Severn Tunnel is to wire in the Severn Tunnel Junction area - thus the route via Gloucester will not be available.   GWR do not have enough crew / route knowledge / capacity to route Swansea trains via Malvern, so it's buses ...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: froome on October 17, 2018, 08:00:02 am
With today's dreadful disruption in mind, it seems timely to ask a question I've been meaning to ask for some time.

Just how susceptible are overhead wires to being damaged?

Whenever i travel along lines fed by overhead wiring, the cables look to me to be very susceptible to many sources of potential danger, from high winds and other weather related factors to damage caused by vandals or interaction with the trains themselves. What sort of risk analysis has been done on their use and what have they shown?

Obviously these are large questions that will have complex answers, but given the inflexibility of any sort of rail system, the susceptibility of a major part of that system, in this case, the prime energy source, must have been given much thought before introduction. Are there better ways to provide electricity that reduce substantially this susceptibility?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on October 17, 2018, 08:07:59 am
The sad thing is all that has gone on these past few years on the GW mainline and now last night has given electrification a bad name yet it has been a huge success on the WCML and on mainland Europe. Not as successful on the ECML but that was because it was done on the cheap.

I still firmly believe electrification is still the right answer for all rail and not relying on diesel.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 17, 2018, 08:09:48 am
With today's dreadful disruption in mind, it seems timely to ask a question I've been meaning to ask for some time.

Just how susceptible are overhead wires to being damaged?

Whenever i travel along lines fed by overhead wiring, the cables look to me to be very susceptible to many sources of potential danger, from high winds and other weather related factors to damage caused by vandals or interaction with the trains themselves. What sort of risk analysis has been done on their use and what have they shown?

Obviously these are large questions that will have complex answers, but given the inflexibility of any sort of rail system, the susceptibility of a major part of that system, in this case, the prime energy source, must have been given much thought before introduction. Are there better ways to provide electricity that reduce substantially this susceptibility?


The area damaged is in the Hanwell area, this is in the most part still the older Mk3 "Headspan" system.  Headspan problem is when a wire is "ripped down" on one line it usually dislodges the other lines; the OLE used on the GWML west of Airport Jcn is independently mechanically registered with this system one wire being "ripped down" is very unlikely to effect adjacent lines, other than perhaps debris which can be quickly removed.


Its worth noting the OLE has quite a high (mechanical) tension on it, which has to be dealt with carefully when is dislodged


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: froome on October 17, 2018, 08:14:25 am
With today's dreadful disruption in mind, it seems timely to ask a question I've been meaning to ask for some time.

Just how susceptible are overhead wires to being damaged?

Whenever i travel along lines fed by overhead wiring, the cables look to me to be very susceptible to many sources of potential danger, from high winds and other weather related factors to damage caused by vandals or interaction with the trains themselves. What sort of risk analysis has been done on their use and what have they shown?

Obviously these are large questions that will have complex answers, but given the inflexibility of any sort of rail system, the susceptibility of a major part of that system, in this case, the prime energy source, must have been given much thought before introduction. Are there better ways to provide electricity that reduce substantially this susceptibility?


The area damaged is in the Hanwell area, this is in the most part still the older Mk3 "Headspan" system.  Headspan problem is when a wire is "ripped down" on one line it usually dislodges the other lines; the OLE used on the GWML west of Airport Jcn is independently mechanically registered with this system one wire being "ripped down" is very unlikely to effect adjacent lines, other than perhaps debris which can be quickly removed.


Its worth noting the OLE has quite a high (mechanical) tension on it, which has to be dealt with carefully when is dislodged

Many thanks, that is very helpful. And I agree with all of Timmer's comments.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 17, 2018, 08:44:05 am
What caused the wire this morning to be "ripped down", if that is what has happened? Something falling on it? Vandalism? Malfunctioning pantograph? ...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TaplowGreen on October 17, 2018, 08:49:07 am
What caused the wire this morning to be "ripped down", if that is what has happened? Something falling on it? Vandalism? Malfunctioning pantograph? ...

Could it be Driver error? If so, I suspect someone is feeling rather uncomfortable this morning...…………….


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on October 17, 2018, 09:30:17 am
What caused the wire this morning to be "ripped down", if that is what has happened? Something falling on it? Vandalism? Malfunctioning pantograph? ...

Could it be Driver error? If so, I suspect someone is feeling rather uncomfortable this morning...…………….

I rather doubt it. All the driver can do is raise or lower the pantograph, perhaps in the wrong place.

Pantograph lowered when it should remain up--------------Train looses power and coasts. No contact with overhead, therefore no damage.
Pantograph raised when it should be lowered.-------------Pantograph liable to be knocked of  by a bridge or signal gantry. No overhead present to be damaged.

If the pantograph is improperly raised just before entering an electrified section, then no damage should be caused because the overhead is ramped at the entrance.

A defective pantograph seems the likely cause with defective overhead a distinct possibility. Either can result in the overhead getting caught UNDER the pantograph and pulling down the wires.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: a-driver on October 17, 2018, 09:35:06 am
Wouldn’t be driver error, could be a whole manner of things... train fault, infrastructure fault, obstruction on the overhead or vandalism. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ChrisB on October 17, 2018, 09:45:56 am
Has there been any movement on when they expect the lines to reach Cardiff? It’s all gone quiet after they announced the delay....

This Q came up at the GWR Stakeholders Conference yesterday & Andrew Haines, MD, said next summer, if I remember correctly.

What caused the wire this morning to be "ripped down", if that is what has happened? Something falling on it? Vandalism? Malfunctioning pantograph? ...

Answered already in the disruption in Thames Valley thread....
An on test ECS 802 recently delivered was being moved from North Pole depot to Stoke Gifford depot....reportedly by a GBrF driver. What actually caused the failure will be under investigation still, I suspect.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SByers on October 17, 2018, 09:47:52 am
With today's dreadful disruption in mind, it seems timely to ask a question I've been meaning to ask for some time.

Just how susceptible are overhead wires to being damaged?

The Swiss mountain railways are mainly overhead high tension line. The actual supports seem to be flimsy wooden poles. Yet it all works through most weathers.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 17, 2018, 10:38:13 am
A defective pantograph seems the likely cause with defective overhead a distinct possibility. Either can result in the overhead getting caught UNDER the pantograph and pulling down the wires.
I'm struggling to see, in my mind, how that happens. All I can think of is the pantograph lifting, hitting the overhead line and not stopping but continuing, pushing the line to one side and getting it trapped underneath. Seems kind of complicated though.  ???


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 17, 2018, 10:38:28 am
Has there been any movement on when they expect the lines to reach Cardiff? It’s all gone quiet after they announced the delay....

This Q came up at the GWR Stakeholders Conference yesterday & Andrew Haines, MD, said next summer, if I remember correctly.

What caused the wire this morning to be "ripped down", if that is what has happened? Something falling on it? Vandalism? Malfunctioning pantograph? ...

Answered already in the disruption in Thames Valley thread....
An on test ECS 802 recently delivered was being moved from North Pole depot to Stoke Gifford depot....reportedly by a GBrF driver. What actually caused the failure will be under investigation still, I suspect.

I would not write anything into it being a GBrF driver most TOCs use a contracted in FOC to move new stock about, carry out test runs and mileage accumulation, they are no less able or skilled than a TOC Driver.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 17, 2018, 10:47:01 am
A defective pantograph seems the likely cause with defective overhead a distinct possibility. Either can result in the overhead getting caught UNDER the pantograph and pulling down the wires.
I'm struggling to see, in my mind, how that happens. All I can think of is the pantograph lifting, hitting the overhead line and not stopping but continuing, pushing the line to one side and getting it trapped underneath. Seems kind of complicated though.  ???

It happens for a number of reasons which leads to the Pan horns (the red bits in my Avata) hooking over the wire which rips the wire down and even removing Pan from the train roof (its designed to do that)


Reasons -

  • OLE contact wire miss aligned, insufficient tension or incorrect stagger

    Track miss aligned, incorrect Cant, track dip, incorrect slew etc

    or a combination of the 2

    The Pan head is defective / miss aligned

    The tarin suspenstion is out of tolerance

    or a combination of the 2


    And or a combination of all of the above



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on October 17, 2018, 10:53:51 am
I’m hearing reports (unconfirmed) that the pantograph was raised at 105mph in an area where it is not tentioned enough for that to happen.  There are specific rules locations where you can raise on the move at speed.

So, driver error is a possibility.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: a-driver on October 17, 2018, 11:41:11 am
I’m hearing reports (unconfirmed) that the pantograph was raised at 105mph in an area where it is not tentioned enough for that to happen.  There are specific rules locations where you can raise on the move at speed.

So, driver error is a possibility.

It is possible.  Raising the pan at over 20mph in a non-designated area is a big no no.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 17, 2018, 12:06:21 pm
A defective pantograph seems the likely cause with defective overhead a distinct possibility. Either can result in the overhead getting caught UNDER the pantograph and pulling down the wires.
I'm struggling to see, in my mind, how that happens. All I can think of is the pantograph lifting, hitting the overhead line and not stopping but continuing, pushing the line to one side and getting it trapped underneath. Seems kind of complicated though.  ???

It happens for a number of reasons which leads to the Pan horns (the red bits in my Avata) hooking over the wire which rips the wire down and even removing Pan from the train roof (its designed to do that)


Reasons -

  • OLE contact wire miss aligned, insufficient tension or incorrect stagger

    Track miss aligned, incorrect Cant, track dip, incorrect slew etc

    or a combination of the 2

    The Pan head is defective / miss aligned

    The tarin suspenstion is out of tolerance

    or a combination of the 2


    And or a combination of all of the above

I hadn't realized the pantograph had 'horns'. Cheers!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on October 17, 2018, 12:58:28 pm
Has there been any movement on when they expect the lines to reach Cardiff? It’s all gone quiet after they announced the delay....

This Q came up at the GWR Stakeholders Conference yesterday & Andrew Haines, MD, said next summer, if I remember correctly.

The latest delivery enhancement plan has the wires ready to be switched on in July, available to be used by passengers by November, although likely the first planned passenger service would be January (2020)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on October 17, 2018, 02:03:57 pm
Which is why GWR were secretly pleased that timetable changes nationwide were deferred as it gave them another cause to blame.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 17, 2018, 03:05:52 pm
... delivery enhancement plan ...

I take it you meant the Enhancements Delivery Plan - but their delivery couldn't half do with some enhancement too!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on October 17, 2018, 03:36:15 pm

I hadn't realized the pantograph had 'horns'. Cheers!

A pantograph is a much more sophisticated piece of kit than most people, me included, realise.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on October 18, 2018, 07:58:50 pm
I was in Bath and Swindon this morning..............I think I now understand why the good citizens of Bath were not exactly enthusiastic about having OHLE through their city !

(http://i66.tinypic.com/iyiwyb.jpg)


(http://i65.tinypic.com/2wohmdi.jpg)

What a mess !


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on October 18, 2018, 08:08:27 pm
Who said the camera never lies?

Telephoto's narrow depth of field making that second image look far more cluttered than reality.

To say nothing of four tracks approaching a major interchange versus the two tracks through Bath.

A supposition, but if Brunel had had the option of overhead electrification I'd wager he'd have used it. Residents and users of the railway through Bath should understand that this is a working railway and not some heritage tourist attraction to be preserved in aspic.

The wires will come to Bath. It won't be permanently canned on heritage grounds. Deferred a few more times on cost grounds maybe, but the knitting will arrive sometime in the 21st century.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on October 18, 2018, 08:15:44 pm
I was in Bath and Swindon this morning..............I think I now understand why the good citizens of Bath were not exactly enthusiastic about having OHLE through their city !

What a mess !

But Bath is not a station throat with 6 reversible lines leading to 14 platforms.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 18, 2018, 08:25:44 pm
OHLE is not pretty. It does not match in style Georgian buildings or Roman remains. It is less ugly than the Colonnades and Waitrose development, the adjacent Hilton, the Southgate development. Had it arrived twenty years ago, it would have been a perfect match for the gasometers that stood on Midland Road and old Stothert & Pitt site. Had it arrived fifty years ago, it would have been viewed as a wonder of engineering to compare with the canal and bridges in Sydney Gardens.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on October 18, 2018, 08:53:01 pm
To me OHLE within the confines and context of a modern railway is quite visually pleasing. I am pretty sure I'm not part of a majority view there but I do think that electrification though Bath will not be as obtrusive as some fear.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 18, 2018, 08:58:33 pm
It's obtrusive when you look along the track, but usually not when you look across.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Oberon on October 18, 2018, 09:52:57 pm
Every time I see the GWR catenary I am surprised how much more heavy duty is seems from other electrified main lines. Is part of the project's problem that it is over-engineered?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: The Grecian on October 18, 2018, 09:56:43 pm
There are plenty of aesthetically pleasing photos of the Lune Gorge on the West Coast Main Line or Burnmouth on the East Coast Main Line post-electrification which the wires haven't spoilt. The Woodhead Line wasn't too badly affected either. Plus virtually every line in Switzerland is electrified, and it doesn't seem to cause too many complaints about the view being spoiled inside or outside the train.

And if you're looking for human designed vistas, York or Manchester Piccadilly railway stations (much larger than Bath) look alright to me...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightonedee on October 18, 2018, 10:12:06 pm
Sadly, I do not have a picture to post, but there are some very elegant steel hoops used on the Clermont Ferrand-Beziers line in France to support the OHL, albeit I recall that's mostly single track.

PS - I have now found the attached with some suitable pictures ( http://transportrail.canalblog.com/pages/la-ligne-des-causses/31796112.html)- the line also has the magnificent Viaduc du Garabit


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on October 18, 2018, 10:15:46 pm
Every time I see the GWR catenary I am surprised how much more heavy duty is seems from other electrified main lines. Is part of the project's problem that it is over-engineered?

I don't see the two track GWML sections, with their individual cantilevered OHLE as over-engineered. The four track portals are arguably more intrusive, as residents overlooking Hermann's Hole have long since moaned about, but it should always be engineering over aesthetic. The recent dewirement of the headspan section nearer Paddington has brought into sharp focus the need for robust OHLE.

Better engineering should mean fewer dewirements.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on October 18, 2018, 10:45:47 pm
Every time I see the GWR catenary I am surprised how much more heavy duty is seems from other electrified main lines. Is part of the project's problem that it is over-engineered?

I would prefer "well built, solidly engineered" as a description of the GWR electrification, rather than over engineered.
In the last few days we have had a high profile failure of cheaply done "under engineered" OHLE on the route into Paddington.
Whilst the proximate cause appears to have been an errant train, this closed all lines and resulted in epic disruption.
With the more substantial portal frame construction that is now in favour, only one line would have been affected.
With the cheapo lightweight span wire construction, the whole lot came down.

The place for heritage is on a heritage line. Busy main lines should be electrified with the emphasis on substantial and durable structures.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 18, 2018, 10:54:31 pm
With the more substantial portal frame construction that is now in favour, only one line would have been affected.

Really? I am not convinced that separate registration - certainly a good idea on a vital stretch of line like that out of Paddington - needs such massive steelwork to support it.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on October 18, 2018, 11:01:31 pm
You can of course have seperate cantilevered arms for each running line, but that requires more space between lines, and many more borings for the stanchions.

Hence formation spanning portals across multiple lines.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eXPassenger on October 18, 2018, 11:07:46 pm
…. the line also has the magnificent Viaduc du Garabit

The viaduct is a stupendous piece of engineering designed by Eiffel.  There is a very good view from the autoroute rest area.  The same autoroute also has the stupendous Millau viaduct.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on October 18, 2018, 11:31:02 pm
the stupendous Millau viaduct.

British architectural design at its best.

On my bucket list of drives.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on October 19, 2018, 08:54:19 am
To me OHLE .................. is quite visually pleasing.

OHLE is not pretty.

I rest my case !

Yesterday was my first chance to properly sample the delights of the IET.  One train was a 10 car, the other a 9 car - both running on diesel. Overall impression - not bad....seats not quite as hard as I had feared (wife agreed), plenty of room generally. Ride was good, acceleration from rest seemed quite spritely. Engines were audible but not intrusive - electric should be very quiet.
The only glaring negative point was the (already) appalling state of the seats and the carpets - I got the impression that spilling a teaspoon of freshwater would leave a permanent massive stain !!  The final part of my journey was in a very well worn 166..........the seats and carpets may well have been dreadfully stained - but it certainly didn't show on the fabric/carpet used.
Used 5 trains (all GWR) - not one on time: best 3L, worst 20 L.
BUT.............Warminster-Bath-Swindon-Gloucester-Westbury-Warminster  for £12 (OPDR + Railcard) - a good deal !


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 19, 2018, 09:13:45 am
There's very little on a railway that I would describe as pretty. Some of the painted decorative cast iron columns on Victorian stations, especially when accompanied by hanging baskets. That's about it, off the top of my head. But there's an awful lot that's visually pleasing, including the snout of an HST and OHLE that works. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eXPassenger on October 19, 2018, 09:55:00 am
the stupendous Millau viaduct.

British architectural design at its best.

On my bucket list of drives.

Definitely a great drive and not to be missed.  The Millau viaduct is amazing.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: BBM on October 19, 2018, 10:35:11 am
Sadly, I do not have a picture to post, but there are some very elegant steel hoops used on the Clermont Ferrand-Beziers line in France to support the OHL, albeit I recall that's mostly single track.

PS - I have now found the attached with some suitable pictures ( http://transportrail.canalblog.com/pages/la-ligne-des-causses/31796112.html)- the line also has the magnificent Viaduc du Garabit

That style of OHLE portal (called 'ogive') was used by the Midi Railway in the 1920s on a number of their electrified lines including most notably the mainline between Bordeaux, Biarritz and the Spanish border at Hendaye. Here's a good Flickr photo from that line:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/collectif_grand_sud_2/36644695755 (https://www.flickr.com/photos/collectif_grand_sud_2/36644695755)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on October 19, 2018, 10:43:08 am
There's very little on a railway that I would describe as pretty. Some of the painted decorative cast iron columns on Victorian stations, especially when accompanied by hanging baskets. That's about it, off the top of my head. But there's an awful lot that's visually pleasing, including the snout of an HST and OHLE that works. 

I'll keep this short to avoid too much topic drift (although aesthetics legitimately should have some place in the discussion surely?). Heritage aside, some working mainline stations, especially if they are well maintained Victorian examples can look wonderfull. Great Malvern, even Bradford on Avon and Torquay spring to mind. Revamped Victorian masterpieces like St Pancras and Paddington are also impressive to the eye in a different way.
It seems in current times these aesthetic considerations have now been lost. BNM's earlier observation that engineering comes before aesthetics on a modern railway is, of course, quite correct and equally, cost is now a massive factor in the present economic evironment.
My thought here is that will future generations look on our more mundane/bland/ugly aspects of functional, modern railway architecture as a lost opportunity?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on October 19, 2018, 11:19:45 am
I consider it more likely that future generations will admire "early 21st century railway electrification equipment" and demand that it be preserved.

This may seem improbable at the moment, but diverging towards architecture, a number of once vilified structures are now listed.

The new Euston station was heavily criticised  but there is now a campagain to save it.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 19, 2018, 11:44:10 am
I consider it more likely that future generations will admire "early 21st century railway electrification equipment" and demand that it be preserved.

Too true - but will it be considered to be safe enough?  There is already a serious and unsolved problem running 3rd rail electrics in preservation, and even our own IETs that have come onto GWR are suffiicient of a safety concern (risk or people using inter-carriage cable harnesses as ladders) to be on hold for the East Coast.  We may end up seeing extra protection quite soon like that already seen in the USA -
 http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=19567.msg234879#msg234879 - and not able to run trains in the current more carefree way!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on October 19, 2018, 11:44:52 am
...It seems in current times these aesthetic considerations have now been lost. BNM's earlier observation that engineering comes before aesthetics on a modern railway is, of course, quite correct and equally, cost is now a massive factor in the present economic evironment.
My thought here is that will future generations look on our more mundane/bland/ugly aspects of functional, modern railway architecture as a lost opportunity?

Bad design takes good materials and produces an ugly result, like Platform 4 at Filton Abbey Wood. A good design could have used cheaper materials and achieved a more aesthetically pleasing result. Away from the constraints of their 'listed' estate, much of what NR do is un-necessarily ugly.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on October 19, 2018, 11:49:23 am
Yes true, and the Eiffel Tower was once widely disliked too. It will be interesting to see how modern railway architecture fares in the future but would some of the newer smaller stops really capture the heritage imagination? Perhaps they will😐

Edit: Image below is Cranbrook Station in Devon, completed a couple of years back.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on October 19, 2018, 11:57:47 am
"Oh admire the classic uncluttered design"
"The perfectly linear yellow line"
"The artfully placed yellow salt bin that forms a focal point"

Clearly should be listed as modern installation art, and access tightly controlled to prevent muddy pawed dogs and sticky fingered children spoiling the careful interpretation by the artist, of the divisions in modern society.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: hassaanhc on October 19, 2018, 12:35:40 pm
I do hate how exaggerated this thing about the "massive" steelwork is. Yes the ones for the tensioning equipment where wire runs start or finish are quite big, but they need to be able to withstand a lot of force. Unfortunately you can end up with several of them near stations where there are many crossovers. But for plain line the normal Series1 twin-track cantilevers look much better than the old Mk3 system (both normal length and extra length ones).

Mk3
Southall: https://flic.kr/p/22t5QDW
Southall again: https://flic.kr/p/MVUWhx

Series1
Pangbourne: https://flic.kr/p/HKLVrK
Pangbourne again: https://flic.kr/p/21BYR51
Maidenhead: https://flic.kr/p/21KWQqy
Iver: https://flic.kr/p/DGs7ff (although one of the massive tensioning ones were just out of shot)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on October 19, 2018, 03:22:35 pm
"Oh admire the classic uncluttered design"
"The perfectly linear yellow line"
"The artfully placed yellow salt bin that forms a focal point"

Clearly should be listed as modern installation art, and access tightly controlled to prevent muddy pawed dogs and sticky fingered children spoiling the careful interpretation by the artist, of the divisions in modern society.

Move aside Will Gompertz, there's a new kid on the block!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 19, 2018, 06:16:11 pm
"Pretty" was the word I chose to contrast with "visually pleasing," though as has been pointed out there is a lot that is "good looking" too. And some that is "ugly". I haven't yet seen FAW's platform 4, so can't comment on that!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: dviner on October 19, 2018, 07:06:23 pm
I do hate how exaggerated this thing about the "massive" steelwork is. Yes the ones for the tensioning equipment where wire runs start or finish are quite big, but they need to be able to withstand a lot of force. Unfortunately you can end up with several of them near stations where there are many crossovers. But for plain line the normal Series1 twin-track cantilevers look much better than the old Mk3 system (both normal length and extra length ones).

Mk3
Southall: https://flic.kr/p/22t5QDW
Southall again: https://flic.kr/p/MVUWhx

Series1
Pangbourne: https://flic.kr/p/HKLVrK
Pangbourne again: https://flic.kr/p/21BYR51
Maidenhead: https://flic.kr/p/21KWQqy
Iver: https://flic.kr/p/DGs7ff (although one of the massive tensioning ones were just out of shot)

Putting aside the cantilevers and portals - what about the bits that actually hold the wires (small part steel? Can't remember the exact terminology)? The Series 1 bits are so much tidier than their Mk 3 counterparts.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on October 19, 2018, 08:41:45 pm
I do hate how exaggerated this thing about the "massive" steelwork is. Yes the ones for the tensioning equipment where wire runs start or finish are quite big, but they need to be able to withstand a lot of force. Unfortunately you can end up with several of them near stations where there are many crossovers. But for plain line the normal Series1 twin-track cantilevers look much better than the old Mk3 system (both normal length and extra length ones).

Mk3
Southall: https://flic.kr/p/22t5QDW
Southall again: https://flic.kr/p/MVUWhx

Series1
Pangbourne: https://flic.kr/p/HKLVrK
Pangbourne again: https://flic.kr/p/21BYR51
Maidenhead: https://flic.kr/p/21KWQqy
Iver: https://flic.kr/p/DGs7ff (although one of the massive tensioning ones were just out of shot)

Putting aside the cantilevers and portals - what about the bits that actually hold the wires (small part steel? Can't remember the exact terminology)? The Series 1 bits are so much tidier than their Mk 3 counterparts.


Small Part Steel (SPS) is the correct term  ;D

The BR Mk3 and its predecessors was / is made up of a thing called "OLEMI". (Overhead Line Equipment Master Index) this is a range of standard parts by a number of manufactures plus some generic parts that were specified to be able to fit with each other, heavy reliance was made on clamping parts together which looks cumbersome.

NR's series 1 and 2 is also in OLEMI 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on October 20, 2018, 12:00:25 pm
This at Midgham LC this morning, no doubt in connection with the B&H juice turn-on :-)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: hassaanhc on October 21, 2018, 10:04:50 pm
This morning there was a Block to Electric Traction between Maidenhead and Didcot Parkway while the wires to Newbury were tested. This saw the stopping services between Paddington and Reading or Didcot Parkway either split at Maidenhead with Class 387 EMUs east of there and Turbo DMUs west of there, or Turbo DMUs running throughout. It was planned to finish around 1100 but overran by about a couple of hours. Unfortunately it was mostly 3-car 165s replacing 8-car 387s (as there probably aren't enough units to have all services as double units), so there was a lot of overcrowding from about 1000 onwards until the wires were available again and the 387s could run west of Maidenhead.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on October 25, 2018, 04:05:46 pm

Rumour has it that there will be a pan-up working from Swindon to Steventon, this Sunday, overnight. Anyone confirm this?

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on October 25, 2018, 04:16:53 pm
What will happen ar Steventon given that the bridge can't be  be raised? (Until sense prevails...)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 25, 2018, 04:23:37 pm
What will happen ar Steventon given that the bridge can't be  be raised? (Until sense prevails...)

Trains can go through pan-up at up to 60 m.p.h. I understand


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on October 25, 2018, 06:47:37 pm
Quote from RailUK forums.

Quote
From the 28th October 80x trains running DOWN passenger trains can use the OLE between Causeway Crossing & Swindon.

The OLE between Foxhall Jn & Causeway and that west of Swindon Station is still not authorised for passenger service so down trains will ‘pan down’ at Moreton Cutting as norm then ‘pan up’ at Causeway.

Down trains not stopping at Swindon will revert to diesel mode prior to the station, stopping trains can switch to diesel during the station stop.

80x units may be observed with ‘pan up’ between Didcot & Steventon and between Swindon & Bristol Parkway but these will be ECS involved with the OLE testing.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: a-driver on October 25, 2018, 10:12:17 pm
What will happen ar Steventon given that the bridge can't be  be raised? (Until sense prevails...)

Trains can go through pan-up at up to 60 m.p.h. I understand

That is the long term plan as well! 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: mjones on October 25, 2018, 10:32:01 pm
What will the time penalty be for this?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on October 25, 2018, 10:48:50 pm
What will happen ar Steventon given that the bridge can't be  be raised? (Until sense prevails...)

Trains can go through pan-up at up to 60 m.p.h. I understand

That is the long term plan as well! 

I thought NR said they were were appealing


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Lee on October 26, 2018, 12:18:26 am
I thought they said that too, but apparently you have to leave out the "e", and add an extra "l".


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 26, 2018, 01:41:40 am
What will happen ar Steventon given that the bridge can't be  be raised? (Until sense prevails...)

Trains can go through pan-up at up to 60 m.p.h. I understand

That is the long term plan as well! 

I thought NR said they were were appealing

A speed limit of 60 m.p.h. on a 125 m.p.h. railway is hardly likely to be seen as a good long term plan (time taken and loss of line capacity) so Network Rail and GWR are keen for a solution to be found.   Having said which some unfortunate speed restrictions (Westbury avoider, Temple Meads station) which we the travelling public feel should be sorted out quite quickly seem to drag on for an age.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on October 26, 2018, 10:57:41 am
What will happen ar Steventon given that the bridge can't be  be raised? (Until sense prevails...)

Trains can go through pan-up at up to 60 m.p.h. I understand

That is the long term plan as well! 

I thought NR said they were were appealing

A speed limit of 60 m.p.h. on a 125 m.p.h. railway is hardly likely to be seen as a good long term plan (time taken and loss of line capacity) so Network Rail and GWR are keen for a solution to be found.   Having said which some unfortunate speed restrictions (Westbury avoider, Temple Meads station) which we the travelling public feel should be sorted out quite quickly seem to drag on for an age.

It’s a couple of thousand people vs hundreds of thousands when it comes to the bridge situation. Unfortunately one day it will need to be replaced but 8 months felt long and it could go faster.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on October 26, 2018, 11:06:48 am
I’m pretty sure from recent posts elsewhere that IETs will switch to diesel mode well before Steventon, drop the pan and go through at line speed.  So down trains during a Didcot call, or if non stopping at Moreton Cutting as now.

The much discussed 60 mph limit will apply to the 387s, and then only a small number of ECS from/to Swindon.

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on October 26, 2018, 11:13:13 am
Presumably trains calling at Didcot Pwy/Jn would not need to change to diesel as they would be braking/accelerating near Steventon anyway.

Steventon is just 3m30c from Didcot, so time lost by observing 60mph there would be small.

Good news, all the same.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on October 26, 2018, 01:26:55 pm
I’m pretty sure from recent posts elsewhere that IETs will switch to diesel mode well before Steventon, drop the pan and go through at line speed.  So down trains during a Didcot call, or if non stopping at Moreton Cutting as now.

The much discussed 60 mph limit will apply to the 387s, and then only a small number of ECS from/to Swindon.

Paul
But surely all this dropping and raising the pan at speed has the element of risk attached to it. I know technology has improved since the early days of electrification but even so.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on October 26, 2018, 01:42:59 pm
It's certainly a far from ideal solution, but should not impact on journey times too much.  Changeover is still done manually on IETs, so until that changes there is an element of risk that concerns me.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on October 28, 2018, 09:40:21 am
What will happen ar Steventon given that the bridge can't be  be raised? (Until sense prevails...)

Trains can go through pan-up at up to 60 m.p.h. I understand

That is the long term plan as well! 

I thought NR said they were were appealing

A speed limit of 60 m.p.h. on a 125 m.p.h. railway is hardly likely to be seen as a good long term plan (time taken and loss of line capacity) so Network Rail and GWR are keen for a solution to be found.   Having said which some unfortunate speed restrictions (Westbury avoider, Temple Meads station) which we the travelling public feel should be sorted out quite quickly seem to drag on for an age.

It’s a couple of thousand people vs hundreds of thousands when it comes to the bridge situation. Unfortunately one day it will need to be replaced but 8 months felt long and it could go faster.

I read somewhere about a novel scheme to jack the existing bridge up.  Shorter closure period, cheaper, and the listed structure can be preserved, so would perhaps be acceptable to the local council and residents.  Apparently it's been done previously on a single-span brick bridge before, but never before on a double span.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 28, 2018, 10:26:17 am
I read somewhere about a novel scheme to jack the existing bridge up.  Shorter closure period, cheaper, and the listed structure can be preserved, so would perhaps be acceptable to the local council and residents.  Apparently it's been done previously on a single-span brick bridge before, but never before on a double span.

There was one done experimentally two years ago, with claimed success. But there's been no rush to do loads of them since, so you do wonder about that. Note this is about masonry arch bridges - ones with steel or concrete decks or beams, if not routine, should be a known option.

There is a piece in Railway Gazette (https://www.railwaygazette.com/news/infrastructure/single-view/view/bridge-lift-to-increase-clearances.html) about that ElevArch demonstration, and NR have a video (https://www.networkrail.co.uk/video-avoiding-bridge-reconstruction-new-bridge-jacking-technique/) (or say they do, I can't get it to run).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Wizard on October 28, 2018, 10:31:16 am
Presumably trains calling at Didcot Pwy/Jn would not need to change to diesel as they would be braking/accelerating near Steventon anyway.

Steventon is just 3m30c from Didcot, so time lost by observing 60mph there would be small.

Good news, all the same.

OTC

Many up trains calling at Didcot will still be doing 125 until past the Jaguar/Vauxhall/Volkswagen dealerships at Milton, and only apply the brake when passing the old Daily Mail building at Foxhall. So it will be quite a time penalty for those as well

At present, there are signs up just by Causeway Crossing saying ‘no access to electric trains’. No mention of a speed restriction, just straight out no access until you get to Didcot Parkway.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: RA on October 28, 2018, 12:10:54 pm
Reports of OHLE damage in the Ladbroke Grove area. All trains on stop in the area.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: a-driver on October 28, 2018, 01:02:11 pm
Reports of OHLE damage in the Ladbroke Grove area. All trains on stop in the area.

Contact wire confirmed as down on Line 4

Reports of passengers self de-training in the Ladbroke Grove area as well


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on October 28, 2018, 01:04:36 pm
Contact wire down on Line 4 at Ladbroke Grove.  Three controlled evacuations arranged.  Again, appreciating it makes no difference in terms of the disruption, this is in the 'old' electrification area from the late 90s.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on October 28, 2018, 04:04:01 pm
There is a piece in Railway Gazette (https://www.railwaygazette.com/news/infrastructure/single-view/view/bridge-lift-to-increase-clearances.html) about that ElevArch demonstration, and NR have a video (https://www.networkrail.co.uk/video-avoiding-bridge-reconstruction-new-bridge-jacking-technique/) (or say they do, I can't get it to run).
If not playing via Network Rail it’s also available on YouTube:  https://youtu.be/KhumV315nFk

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: sikejsudjek3 on October 28, 2018, 10:51:22 pm
I would have thought jacking the bridge up was an excellent solution.

1) Convince the local nimby's its a great idea
2) Jack it up one side only first, and crack the arch.
3) Demolish troublesome bridge on safety grounds
4) Stick the cheapest and most ugly bridge in its place.

Problem solved.  :D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Interceptor on October 28, 2018, 11:11:48 pm
From personal inspection of this particular structure over a number of years, it is clear that the structure is showing significant signs of distress. I would not be surprised if some form of vehicle weight restriction were to be applied in the future, particularly if we have a harsh winter and freeze/thaw effects disturb the brickwork. Next time someone drives over it, take a look at the road surfacing and the undulations.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on October 29, 2018, 12:23:04 am

I think that it's a 3-arch bridge, unlike the one shown jacked. It is evidently in poor condition, evidenced by the bracing applied. I'm surprised that it could qualify for listing.

I suggest that NR has a chat to the local building inspector about serving a dangerous structure notice for demolition. That trumps listing.

Then a weekend with bus replacements and some gelignite sticks....

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on October 29, 2018, 11:38:42 am
From personal inspection of this particular structure over a number of years, it is clear that the structure is showing significant signs of distress. I would not be surprised if some form of vehicle weight restriction were to be applied in the future, particularly if we have a harsh winter and freeze/thaw effects disturb the brickwork. Next time someone drives over it, take a look at the road surfacing and the undulations.

And if feeling cautious, do not closely follow any heavy vehicle !


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on October 29, 2018, 02:06:13 pm
800s and 802s can now run in passenger service from Causeway to Swindon in the down direction only.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 29, 2018, 02:25:16 pm
800s and 802s can now run in passenger service from Causeway to Swindon in the down direction only.

That's under electrical power, right?    They can still come back with passengers under diesel power?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on October 29, 2018, 02:37:49 pm

I think that it's a 3-arch bridge, unlike the one shown jacked. It is evidently in poor condition, evidenced by the bracing applied. I'm surprised that it could qualify for listing.

I suggest that NR has a chat to the local building inspector about serving a dangerous structure notice for demolition. That trumps listing.

Then a weekend with bus replacements and some gelignite sticks....

OTC
Should book a concrete delivery and get that chap involved who took out the bridge parapets  on SWT’s network a few years ago.  But do it while trains aren’t running as a concrete mixer landing on an EMU isn’t all that safe...

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on October 29, 2018, 03:14:50 pm
  But do it while trains aren’t running as a concrete mixer landing on an EMU isn’t all that safe...


...especially if Rod Hull's still got his hand up it.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on October 29, 2018, 11:16:47 pm
Quote from: paul7755 link=topic=18592.msg249950#msg249950

Should book a concrete delivery and get that chap involved who took out the bridge parapets  on SWT’s network a few years ago.  But do it while trains aren’t running as a concrete mixer landing on an EMU isn’t all that safe...

Paul

Quite.

http://www.rail.co.uk/rail-news/2013/no-claims-bonus-los-as-lorry-accident-causes-large-train-repair-bill/

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on October 30, 2018, 06:37:10 pm
Perhaps NR need a few of these.....
(https://4.imimg.com/data4/YK/XV/MY-2593590/railway-electrification-services-500x500.jpg)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 01, 2018, 08:19:13 am
Network Rail have tweeted something from BBC Radio Wiltshire about electric services starting from Swindon this morning.

https://twitter.com/networkrailwest/status/1057902936389509120 (https://twitter.com/networkrailwest/status/1057902936389509120)

Also this from Swindon Council

https://twitter.com/SwindonCouncil/status/1057909269012639744 (https://twitter.com/SwindonCouncil/status/1057909269012639744)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chuffed on November 01, 2018, 08:27:49 am
Let's hope that services are more 'up the pan' than 'down the pan' from this morning then ! :o


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on November 01, 2018, 08:48:07 am
IETs have been running on electric in the down direction to Swindon since Monday (apart from switching to diesel between South Moreton and Steventon). I saw a 800/3 9-car running on electric near Baulking Grange between Challow and Uffington yesterday.

I've read elsewhere that electric running in the up direction from Swindon is due to commence next week. Given the electrical interference issues previously experienced, NR and Hitachi are taking a cautious approach!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 02, 2018, 05:02:33 pm
Good picture in this evening's Bristol Post, showing the state of electrification at Hatchet Road (just after Bristol Parkway):

(https://i2-prod.bristolpost.co.uk/incoming/article2177382.ece/ALTERNATES/s810/2_Bus-v-bridge-1.jpg)

Image from Bristol Post (https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/bus-crash-bridge-closed-parkway-217746)

Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on November 02, 2018, 05:35:30 pm
Good picture in this evening's Bristol Post, showing the state of electrification at Hatchet Road (just after Bristol Parkway):
(https://i2-prod.bristolpost.co.uk/incoming/article2177382.ece/ALTERNATES/s810/2_Bus-v-bridge-1.jpg)
Image from Bristol Post (https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/bus-crash-bridge-closed-parkway-217746)
Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2


Open Top Rail Replacement Services now, might be a first. Luckily there were no passengers on board.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 02, 2018, 07:11:20 pm
Full marks to the "huge steel barrier," which worked as intended.

Quote
The bus hit the bridge with such force that the roof of the bus was sheared clean off, and the bus continued on for a few more yards before coming to a stop.
A few more yards? It looks like about three bus lengths from the point where it first hit the bridge.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 02, 2018, 08:35:42 pm
Full marks to the "huge steel barrier," which worked as intended.

The full quote is "An initial inspection of any impact damage to the bridge revealed the bridge came through the experience unscathed - a huge steel barrier at the entrance to the bridge took the full force of the bus's roof, and protected the bridge as intended."

Well, they are still running trains over that "barrier" - it's the the northern, steel, bridge put there some time after the Severn Tunnel and the line from Wootton Bassett were built. That is 15'2" up, which is plenty to take a double-decker under - so it didn't hit it. It hit the brick arch, having failed to move out to the middle of the road, which is why the roof in the picture on Bristol Live lies under the steel bridge. Draw your own conclusions about the reporting!



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: BBM on November 02, 2018, 09:29:26 pm
BBC News has a video of the actual incident involving the bus hitting the bridge:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-bristol-46077532 (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-bristol-46077532)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 03, 2018, 11:39:42 am
Full marks to the "huge steel barrier," which worked as intended.

The full quote is "An initial inspection of any impact damage to the bridge revealed the bridge came through the experience unscathed - a huge steel barrier at the entrance to the bridge took the full force of the bus's roof, and protected the bridge as intended."

Well, they are still running trains over that "barrier" - it's the the northern, steel, bridge put there some time after the Severn Tunnel and the line from Wootton Bassett were built. That is 15'2" up, which is plenty to take a double-decker under - so it didn't hit it. It hit the brick arch, having failed to move out to the middle of the road, which is why the roof in the picture on Bristol Live lies under the steel bridge. Draw your own conclusions about the reporting!

Information posted elsewhere suggests there isn't a bridge protection beam there and the bus hit the brick arch after clearing the parallel steel span.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 03, 2018, 12:22:05 pm
Full marks to the "huge steel barrier," which worked as intended.

The full quote is "An initial inspection of any impact damage to the bridge revealed the bridge came through the experience unscathed - a huge steel barrier at the entrance to the bridge took the full force of the bus's roof, and protected the bridge as intended."

Well, they are still running trains over that "barrier" - it's the the northern, steel, bridge put there some time after the Severn Tunnel and the line from Wootton Bassett were built. That is 15'2" up, which is plenty to take a double-decker under - so it didn't hit it. It hit the brick arch, having failed to move out to the middle of the road, which is why the roof in the picture on Bristol Live lies under the steel bridge. Draw your own conclusions about the reporting!
Information posted elsewhere suggests there isn't a bridge protection beam there and the bus hit the brick arch after clearing the parallel steel arch.

As you suggest there clearly isn't a CPB - this is the view from where the bus entered:

https://goo.gl/maps/e1N696vDEnp

...and this is the view from the other side:

https://goo.gl/maps/QfoiS3VqA312

Edit: corrected Google Maps links



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on November 03, 2018, 01:12:20 pm
Full marks to the "huge steel barrier," which worked as intended.
The full quote is "An initial inspection of any impact damage to the bridge revealed the bridge came through the experience unscathed - a huge steel barrier at the entrance to the bridge took the full force of the bus's roof, and protected the bridge as intended."

Well, they are still running trains over that "barrier" - it's the the northern, steel, bridge put there some time after the Severn Tunnel and the line from Wootton Bassett were built. That is 15'2" up, which is plenty to take a double-decker under - so it didn't hit it. It hit the brick arch, having failed to move out to the middle of the road, which is why the roof in the picture on Bristol Live lies under the steel bridge. Draw your own conclusions about the reporting!
Information posted elsewhere suggests there isn't a bridge protection beam there and the bus hit the brick arch after clearing the parallel steel arch.
As you suggest there clearly isn't a CPB - this is the view from where the bus entered:
https://goo.gl/maps/e1N696vDEnp
...and this is the view from the other side:
https://goo.gl/maps/QfoiS3VqA312
Edit: corrected Google Maps links

.... and very apt that the second link should show a double decker turning right into the Bristol Parkway Estate.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 03, 2018, 01:48:15 pm
When approached from the north side there are no white lines on the bridge to point out the need to be in the centre of the road.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 03, 2018, 02:00:55 pm
When approached from the north side there are no white lines on the bridge to point out the need to be in the centre of the road.

That's true - and I'm sure there should be. But look left from the initial Street View and there's a roadside sign, plus a dashed line on the road. However, given that the first bridge hides the second, I'd expect words and arrows on the road too (plus those width lines). Note that from the other side there is no line on the road, though there is the same roadside sign.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on November 03, 2018, 05:48:58 pm
Good picture in this evening's Bristol Post, showing the state of electrification at Hatchet Road (just after Bristol Parkway):

Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2
Streetview shows that there are advance signs in both metric and imperialunits on the approach, and also instructions to use the centre of the road.

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 03, 2018, 06:03:54 pm
The rules - Traffic Signs Manual: Chapter 4 - say this about composite bridges:
Quote
COMPOSITE BRIDGES
7.25 Some bridges originally built as arches have been adapted with the addition of girders or beams. Where the arch is the lowest part, the whole structure should be signed as an arch bridge. Black and yellow striped plates (to highlight the profile of the arch) should be suspended from the bridge beam, together with further plates on the arch itself.

The signage it specifies for an arch bridge of this width includes a single chord (as on the north side) plus the roadside signs at the bridge which look right. There should also be advance signs and "route avoiding" arrows on other signs; I din't know if they are present here.

How often do you see an arch-shaped dangly thing under a bridge? Not often! The manual has more to say about them (straight ones are also used):
Quote
7.27 Experience has shown that these suspended plates will themselves be struck from time to time and that rigidly-mounted aluminium substrates are not suitable. Rubber or other flexible material should be used for the backing, suspended by means of chains or hinges fixed securely to the bridge structure by a method agreed with the bridge owner. The plates should not be fixed rigidly by screws or bolts to the face of the bridge, as there is a greater risk than with flexibly-suspended plates of them being dislodged and falling onto vehicles on the road beneath. The use of rubber-backed plates will help to avoid annoyance to nearby residents from the noise of hanging metal plates striking the bridge structure in wind or vehicle slipstream. It is recommended that the yellow parts of the marking should be retroreflective; they may also be fluorescent (see para 7.6). When the signs are lit, the plates should also be lit whenever practicable. This is particularly helpful where a girder bridge is followed by a more restrictive arch bridge.

And finally, road markings, which are in TSM Chapter 5:
Quote
HIGH VEHICLE MARKINGS AT ARCH BRIDGES
22.5 All bridges with a headroom of less than 16'-6"should be clearly signed. (Arch bridge signing is dealt with in Chapter 4, paras 7.16 to 7.19). Road markings, together with appropriate warning signs,can be used in the case of arch bridges to guide higher vehicles to the centre of the road, where the clearance may be greater than at the outside edges.

22.6 The HIGH VEHS marking (diagram 1024.1) is prescribed for use at arch bridges. High vehicles should be guided through the highest part of the arch using this marking and the arrow to diagram 1014, together with edge of carriageway markings to diagram 1010. These should be aligned with the chord marking on the bridge (diagram 532.2) which indicates the available headroom in the central part of the road...

Note: the current chapter 5 is dated 2003, so its references to chapter 4 are out to date - that is now the 2013 edition.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 03, 2018, 06:23:03 pm
Good picture in this evening's Bristol Post, showing the state of electrification at Hatchet Road (just after Bristol Parkway):

Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2
Streetview shows that there are advance signs in both metric and imperialunits on the approach, and also instructions to use the centre of the road.

Paul

For arch bridges the meaning of "advance" is a bit puzzling, since they are doing two things. At the bridge, the main concern is getting vehicles into the right bit of the road. At the last turning, or in advance, the concern is to prevent overheight vehicles going that way and diverting them. So the inserts within advance direction signs are the same as other low bridges, while the markings and the "final warning sign" (use middle of road) are specific to arches. But then, for some reason, single triangular signs at the last turning (with no "route avoiding" message) or further away have a little arch in them. Since that last turn can be miles back (needing a distance label) or right up close (as in Hatchet Lane), they may or may not be "in advance". Anyway, what I meant was something at least half a mile away.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 03, 2018, 06:56:35 pm
Good picture in this evening's Bristol Post, showing the state of electrification at Hatchet Road (just after Bristol Parkway):

Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2
Streetview shows that there are advance signs in both metric and imperialunits on the approach, and also instructions to use the centre of the road.

Paul

Yes, the advanced signs use both sets of units, but the warnings on the bridge itself are in USCS only. Overall, it could be clearer.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on November 03, 2018, 08:32:04 pm
Good picture in this evening's Bristol Post, showing the state of electrification at Hatchet Road (just after Bristol Parkway):

Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2
Streetview shows that there are advance signs in both metric and imperialunits on the approach, and also instructions to use the centre of the road.

Paul

Yes, the advanced signs use both sets of units, but the warnings on the bridge itself are in USCS only. Overall, it could be clearer.

Is it just me or did the footage remind anyone else of the double decker bus in Live and Let Die?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 03, 2018, 08:54:03 pm
There doesn't seem to be any simple way of finding out where signs are mandatory, but the form they should take if present is prescribed (the word used) in The Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2016. The Traffic Signs Manual generally repeats this in something resembling comprehensible English (which the TSRGD 2016 are not), but are all older than 2016 so may no longer be correct.

In the case of units on bridge signage, I found a Sunday Times report (https://www.driving.co.uk/news/news-metric-road-signs-to-become-mandatory/) that a 2014 DfT consultation proposed making dual units compulsory on new signs but let old ones stay. That's consistent with the 2013 TSM saying metric is optional, and the TSRGD 2016 only showing the signs with both - but I wouldn't put it any stronger than that. Distances (along the road) are of course still to be given in miles.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on November 03, 2018, 11:21:12 pm
Mods, is there any way this recent discussion about the bridge bash can be moved to the relevant thread?

Technobabble is fine here if its about OLE and associated subjects. But road signage?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 03, 2018, 11:29:23 pm
Mods, is there any way this recent discussion about the bridge bash can be moved to the relevant thread?

Technobabble is fine here if its about OLE and associated subjects. But road signage?

I must take the blame - but in mitigation, how was I to know that a photo of new OHLE that just happened to have a broken bus in the foreground would lead to all this?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 04, 2018, 12:36:29 am
Mods, is there any way this recent discussion about the bridge bash can be moved to the relevant thread?

Technobabble is fine here if its about OLE and associated subjects. But road signage?

I must take the blame - but in mitigation, how was I to know that a photo of new OHLE that just happened to have a broken bus in the foreground would lead to all this?

This is the "Coffee Shop".  Start a discussion on the stickiness of Custard and you'll get a report on "Adhesion in Foods: Fundamental Principles and Applications" (https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=3flNDQAAQBAJ&pg=PA82&lpg=PA82&dq=stickiness+of+custard&source=bl&ots=QBlr3JHM_L&sig=cVQgGnGK0hYFpdo6W7uKW4zU-4w&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjDiKC6vrneAhWBT8AKHWhhB7Q4FBDoATAEegQIBhAB#v=onepage&q=stickiness%20of%20custard&f=false)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on November 04, 2018, 08:10:29 am
Oh well, I guess I'll just have to continue off topic.  :P

Ahh, custard. That's more like it. I know more about its properties than I do about road signage regulations.

In powdered form it can be pretty explosive, as seen at the General Foods (the then makers of Bird's brand custard) factory in Banbury in 1981. C6H12O6(s) + 6O2(g) (with a heat or ignition source) -> 6CO2(g) + 6H2O(g).

And in runny form, thanks to it being a non-Newtonian liquid, it's possible to walk on. https://youtu.be/BN2D5y-AxIY It can also be bulletproof. https://youtu.be/xNUcO-gnbeQ

Ultimately, I prefer it this way:
(https://preview.ibb.co/kFb6cf/rps20181104-075308.jpg)
That's my homemade apple and blackberry crumble, made a few days ago, with Ambrosia Custard. It were lush.

(My custard knowledge hasn't come from book learning and years of study. Mainly just one episode of QI. I look forward to Sandy Toksvig explaining road signage/marking regulation, in a more amusing and engaging way than here, in a future episode)

;D ;D ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bus Queen on November 04, 2018, 09:55:28 am
Must agree with Graham custard is more yummy on a good crumble my favourite is apple with a touch of Cinnamon


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Lee on November 04, 2018, 10:17:24 am
Custard is only eaten in this household if it's part of a trifle.

Should we not instead consider the benefits of cold ice cream on a hot crumble or maybe even an apple pie?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 04, 2018, 10:55:08 am
Here's all I have to add on this subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZ6PDPwpJxg


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 04, 2018, 07:32:01 pm
There are lines on the carriageway when approaching from the north as well, but no arrows or writing on the road surface, so it might not be obvious what the line is for.
https://goo.gl/maps/xLfoexZwk892

I had a piece of toffee apple bread pudding (I think that was what it was called) with custard at Scarlet's in Clevedon today. Yumm!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 04, 2018, 08:04:51 pm
There are lines on the carriageway when approaching from the north as well, but no arrows or writing on the road surface, so it might not be obvious what the line is for.
https://goo.gl/maps/xLfoexZwk892

I'm not sure your north and south are right there - but I see now that there is no dashed line on the west because the pavement is wider, so no need for an arrow and words from the south to warn you not to drive on he pavement. From the north there is little time after the roundabout to see and react to the dashed line on the east side before you go into shadow, so the arrow would certainly help. And that asymmetry is even worse than that - if you drove north without having to move over, you would be preconditioned to come back south without doing so too.

Never eat the stuff.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 04, 2018, 09:18:09 pm
Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2

That bus is probably a bit old for metric, and may even have a pre-decimal ticket machine. 1993 was really just the start of the decimal and metric conversion period of about three millennia (which is a lot of fortnights).

I wonder how many involuntary bus converters have tried to persuade a court that the accident only happened because they miscalculated the metric equivalent of a Henry VIII units sign?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 04, 2018, 09:23:19 pm
Incidentally, I can't help noticing that this is another bridge where the height warning is given in US Customary units only - is there a pattern emerging here? https://goo.gl/maps/uEs1mQrrHaC2

That bus is probably a bit old for metric, and may even have a pre-decimal ticket machine. 1993 was really just the start of the decimal and metric conversion period of about three millennia (which is a lot of fortnights).

Umm...

Industry officially changed over in 1970, and we had decimal currency in 1971.  That was a long time before 1993.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 04, 2018, 10:14:30 pm
Umm...

Industry officially changed over in 1970, and we had decimal currency in 1971.  That was a long time before 1993.

Decimal currency was the exception to the slow evolution rule, simply because the coins themselves eventually ceased to legal tender. But however industry measured it in manufacturing, it was still a 15-foot tall busto a lot of the people driving them for a lot longer.

Eventually, bridge height signs on new bridges will be only in metric units. Then for about 500 years, we will have three standards in use.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: 1st fan on November 04, 2018, 11:05:56 pm
Oh well, I guess I'll just have to continue off topic.  :P

Ahh, custard. That's more like it. I know more about its properties than I do about road signage regulations.

And in runny form, thanks to it being a non-Newtonian liquid, it's possible to walk on. https://youtu.be/BN2D5y-AxIY

;D ;D ;D
Cool fact......My friend was the scientist who set up that experiment on Braniac.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 05, 2018, 07:08:11 am
Decimal currency was the exception to the slow evolution rule, simply because the coins themselves eventually ceased to legal tender. ...

Not sure that was the reason.  As I recall (and I am old enough to recall!) there was supposed to be a six month overlap to allow people time to change, but in practise nearly every business owner wanted to be seen to be moderns and with the times and it certainly felt like 99% plus changed on day one.

Same thing in Innsbruck when Austria switched to the Euro on 1st January (2002?) ... happened to be there on a holiday and it took no more than - I think - 24 hours to switch.

Dagen H (H day) was the day on 3 September 1967, on which the traffic in Sweden switched from driving on the left hand side of the road to the right.   I don't think any period was offered where you could drive on either side.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: martyjon on November 05, 2018, 07:23:44 am
.... but in practice nearly every business owner wanted to be seen to be moderns and with the times and it certainly felt like 99% plus changed on day one.

The 1% that didn't, if I recall, was British Rail(ways), who were given dispensation to change on day zero cos their accounting week started on a Sunday.   ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on November 05, 2018, 10:46:38 am
Buses went decimal on Feb 21st - 'D-Day+6'; I believe the logic was that this was a good way to hoover up a lot of loose change as (in town, anyway) not many bus fares were over a shilling. Only halfpennies, pennies and threepences were replaced on Feb 15th; 6d coins remained in circulation for many years and the smaller coppers could be used in multiples of 6d, hence the jingle (oft heard on 'Decimal 5' before the 6 o'clock news) Use you old coppers in sixpenny lots.

Talking of copper: isn't that what they use on OHLE, like they are installing on the GWML?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 05, 2018, 11:41:47 am
I remember that shilling and two-shilling coins continued in circulation for many years post-decimalisation. I don't remember pre-decimalisation money at all, but I remember those coins in use as the equivalent of 5p and 10p, so a 6d coin must have been worth 21/2p, which is an unconventional sum!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on November 05, 2018, 12:16:21 pm
The Decimal Currency Board recommended the old 6d be demonetised at decimalisation, as it seemed illogical to have a coin at 2p and 2.5p. Politicians intervened to keep it, although in practice it disappeared from regular circulation pretty quickly. I do remember being surprised around 1976 to receive one in change though. It was finally demonetised in 1980.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 05, 2018, 12:24:33 pm
I remember that shilling and two-shilling coins continued in circulation for many years post-decimalisation. I don't remember pre-decimalisation money at all, but I remember those coins in use as the equivalent of 5p and 10p, so a 6d coin must have been worth 21/2p, which is an unconventional sum!

There were two conversions proposed seriously, 1 new pound = 10s or 20s. In favour of 10s was that most everyday transactions were in shillings, even for sums of over £1, and a factor of 10 is a lot easier to cope with. While keeping pounds made bigger sums easier to handle, these usually had one money business or professional involved, and a factor of two wouldn't bother them. In the end the "foreigners won't understand and will lose confidence in Sterling" argument won.

I can remember Jim Callaghan on TV making the case that 1s=5p would be easier for us all in low-value transactions than 1s=10p - and with am impressively straight face, too.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on November 05, 2018, 12:41:20 pm
There were other proposals apart from a 10 shilling dollar, which the Commonwealth countries mainly opted for. One was a unit based on 8/4, ie 100d. There was a trial series of coins stuck which included a decimal farthing, but inflation through the 1960s already negated the necessity of that when it came to the real series.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on November 05, 2018, 02:49:03 pm
I remember that shilling and two-shilling coins continued in circulation for many years post-decimalisation. I don't remember pre-decimalisation money at all, but I remember those coins in use as the equivalent of 5p and 10p, so a 6d coin must have been worth 21/2p, which is an unconventional sum!

IIRC the old sixpence, worth two and a half new pence, was retained partly at the request of London buses since many bus fares were 6 old pence at the time.
Also the 50 new pence coin was introduced well before D day, to be used in place of the ten shilling note.
This was for two reasons, firstly to gently get people used to the new money in easy stages, and secondly to avoid printing more 10 shilling notes, these being in short supply at the time.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: metalrail on November 05, 2018, 03:06:24 pm
I remember that shilling and two-shilling coins continued in circulation for many years post-decimalisation. I don't remember pre-decimalisation money at all, but I remember those coins in use as the equivalent of 5p and 10p, so a 6d coin must have been worth 21/2p, which is an unconventional sum!

IIRC the old sixpence, worth two and a half new pence, was retained partly at the request of London buses since many bus fares were 6 old pence at the time.
Also the 50 new pence coin was introduced well before D day, to be used in place of the ten shilling note.
This was for two reasons, firstly to gently get people used to the new money in easy stages, and secondly to avoid printing more 10 shilling notes, these being in short supply at the time.
Plus don't forget they were also kept to stick in xmas puddings...  ready to choke on!  I remember me mam collecting them when it was announced they were going out of circulation in the late 70s, so we still had to suffer 'choke roulette' on xmas day for years after!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 05, 2018, 07:31:21 pm
Talking of copper: isn't that what they use on OHLE, like they are installing on the GWML?

Ah yes, a prompt to get back on thread. Sorry, Sir!

Plus don't forget they were also kept to stick in xmas puddings...  ready to choke on!  I remember me mam collecting them when it was announced they were going out of circulation in the late 70s, so we still had to suffer 'choke roulette' on xmas day for years after!

Ooh! Mrs FT, N! still has a couple of the silver 3d pieces, taken over from her mother, which go into the Christmas pud. Being smaller than the tanner, it wasn't "choke roulette" at our house. The attrition rate is largely down to improved plumbing - she had about eight to begin with.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Robin Summerhill on November 05, 2018, 09:18:31 pm
.... but in practice nearly every business owner wanted to be seen to be moderns and with the times and it certainly felt like 99% plus changed on day one.

The 1% that didn't, if I recall, was British Rail(ways), who were given dispensation to change on day zero cos their accounting week started on a Sunday.   ;D

That's not how I remember things. In those pre-computer days I, working in the Divisional Paybill Office in Bristol as I was at the time, were were working for weeks beforehand doing the conversions the old-fashioned way. By hand. That is the reason why the date of 15th February 1971 is burnt into my memory!

It also might explain why I still convert back. I got some funny looks a few monrhs back in Sainsburys when I loudly said to myself; "How much!! I'm not paying 11 shillings for a time of peas... :)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on November 06, 2018, 03:45:29 pm
Why do the Germans always do it better than we do ??  Even in the field of almighty foul-ups (being polite here) they have seemed to have beaten the GWML effort by a mile (1.609344 kilometres)..........

http://www.bbc.com/capital/story/20181030-what-happened-to-berlins-ghost-airport


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on November 06, 2018, 04:13:40 pm
Last Saturday I walked up Eastbourne Terrace, something I haven't done in years, as usually when I leave Paddington it is by underground. Looking at the current outside state of the Crossrail station, and the works that were going on around it, I struggle to understand how it was thought until fairly recently that this could open next month.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 07, 2018, 11:55:52 pm
There was a report on BBC South local news tonight about a report for Network Rail on the vexed topic of he OLE at Goring Gap. I can't find that online with the BBC, nor Network Rail, but there is this from the Henley Standard (Goring page) (https://www.henleystandard.co.uk/news/goring/132569/steel-rail-gantries-should-be-made-more-attractive.html):
Quote
METAL gantries installed along the railway line in the Goring area should be made more attractive, according to a report commissioned by Network Rail.

Engineering firm Balfour Beatty has recommended a number of measures to reduce the visual impact of the gantries, which were put up in March 2015 as part of the electrification of the Great Western main line to Oxford.

These include:
•Replacing the gantries with slimmer or shorter designs.
• Painting them in more natural colours.
• Bringing some of the overhead equipment down to ground level.
• Planting more trees, shrubs and hedging at the edge of the line.

Network Rail says none of this can be done unless the Government is willing to fund it

There is even more detail on some of those, though in part that shows the HS have misundestood some terms:
Quote
The report says the simplest solution is to move the bulky electrical transformers from the top of each pillar to ground level, reducing their height by about 1ft. The horizontal booms could be made thinner and solid or the entire gantry could be replaced with a slimmer goalpost shape, as happened with the Grade II listed Gatehampton railway bridge to improve its appearance.

They could also be replaced with a T-shaped structure which was used at Moulsford viaduct to conserve views.

Replacing the solid spans with metal wires has been ruled out as this design is considered unreliable and dangerous to repair.

The report says the landscape is mostly yellow with hints of green and red while the gantries are grey and the accompanying fencing is dark green, which clashes.

It suggests painting five gantries in slightly different shades and asking the public which they prefer.

More planting could be carried out, although some would be on private land so would require the owners’ permission.

Balfour Beatty says each measure alone would have a small impact but combined they would have a bigger effect and the benefit would be substantial and worthwhile.

The Goring RAG report similar proposals (http://www.savegoringgap.org.uk/) from a meeting with NR in September, which is cryptic but explains the bit about ATFs better:

Quote
    Series 1 Amended:
        Solid beam modification
        ATF options (all assume cropping masts to boom level)
            Vertical insulators
            Low-Level ATF
            Ground-level ATF
    Viaduct Portal as replacement for standard portal
    Viaduct Twin T as replacement for standard portal (review possible locations)
    Landscape-based Mitigations
    Colour (painting)
    Fencing
    Offsetting (Biodiversity/Landscape/Visual)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on November 08, 2018, 01:44:02 am
The moaning Nimby brigade overlooking Herman's Hole just won't give up will they?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Lee on November 08, 2018, 08:19:49 am
The moaning Nimby brigade overlooking Herman's Hole just won't give up will they?

They look quite a determined bunch to me...



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: 1st fan on November 08, 2018, 02:11:22 pm
Last Saturday I walked up Eastbourne Terrace, something I haven't done in years, as usually when I leave Paddington it is by underground. Looking at the current outside state of the Crossrail station, and the works that were going on around it, I struggle to understand how it was thought until fairly recently that this could open next month.
I had a cab driver taking me to Paddington who asked which end I wanted which doesn't happen that often. I said I would have liked the Eastbourne Terrace entrance and he said so would he! For me it was the proximity to the 1st lounge and shops. For him the easier access from places that aren't served by the Westway and less competition. Said he'd heard rumblings (pun not intended) that crossrail was way behind schedule from passengers well before it was announced to the wider world.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Tim on November 08, 2018, 03:16:16 pm

for those of you that doubted that Network Rail would install something in a tunnel that could rust..... the minister has confirmed it-
I saw this on the BBC and thought you should see it:

Severn Tunnel electrification kit deteriorating, minister admits - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-politics-44690614

Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?
:)


I did post earlier that the construction team were informed of the harsh conditions and they did see example of existing equipment; from a brief chat I have had with someone involved in the project they have been montoring the install and there are areas of concern.   Also the lessons are being learnt to determin the levels of inspection, maintainance and what the renewals polocy should be (ie 10, 20, 30 years etc)



It is an extremely harsh environment 

Made worse I expect by running diesel trains in the tunnel which chuck out acidic gases

That will have limited effects, it more the damp atmospher in the tunnel



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: YouKnowNothing on November 08, 2018, 11:26:05 pm

for those of you that doubted that Network Rail would install something in a tunnel that could rust..... the minister has confirmed it-
I saw this on the BBC and thought you should see it:

Severn Tunnel electrification kit deteriorating, minister admits - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-politics-44690614

Here's the article for those that are interested -

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/severn-tunnel-shut-three-weeks-14785503

Does anyone know if it's true?
:)


I did post earlier that the construction team were informed of the harsh conditions and they did see example of existing equipment; from a brief chat I have had with someone involved in the project they have been montoring the install and there are areas of concern.   Also the lessons are being learnt to determin the levels of inspection, maintainance and what the renewals polocy should be (ie 10, 20, 30 years etc)



It is an extremely harsh environment 

Made worse I expect by running diesel trains in the tunnel which chuck out acidic gases

That will have limited effects, it more the damp atmospher in the tunnel



Has it rusted again? Another tunnel closure over Xmas to fix the issue?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on November 12, 2018, 09:01:27 pm
It's reported that the 13.29 Swansea - Paddington ran pan-up from Swindon - Causeway.

Dark horses.

OTC

"authorised for use as from 0830 11/11/18"


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on November 14, 2018, 08:33:00 pm
At last, a couple of wires have appeared on the Welsh side of the Severn Tunnel - along the Llanwern Straight, to be precise, though they're ones that go along the masts, not the catenary itself (I guess the lower one is some sort of earth connection, and the one on the top for power transmission?)  There is also a bit of knitting across the tracks at the substation at STJ.

Still no masts at STJ station itself, and at least a dozen still to go up between there and the tunnel.  Meanwhile at Newport there are men digging holes with spades for some of the remaining bases.  The steelwork there seems to have been going up in a somewhat random fashion, and it looks like one mast is due to go in half-way through the fence by the taxi rank!

Near Llanwern Steelworks there are some piled bases being used in pairs with what looks like a steel casting joining the piles and the mast attached in the middle.  I imagine this is because of the marshy ground, but what interests me most about these is whether they put in the piles an exact distance apart, or whether the castings are each custom-made.  But then, nothing on this project looks as if it's been done on the cheap.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 14, 2018, 08:54:17 pm
At last, a couple of wires have appeared on the Welsh side of the Severn Tunnel ...

Electric traction has of course been in use ((here)) (http://www.greatormetramway.co.uk/en/how-it-works) in Wales since 1958 and until 2001 that had overhead wires, though they have now been replaced with a more modern alternative.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 14, 2018, 09:01:02 pm
At last, a couple of wires have appeared on the Welsh side of the Severn Tunnel ...

Electric traction has of course been in use ((here)) (http://www.greatormetramway.co.uk/en/how-it-works) in Wales since 1958 and until 2001 that had overhead wires, though they have now been replaced with a more modern alternative.
Forgive me Grahame, but I thought the Tramway was cable operated.  The overhead wires were for telegraph communication to the moving cars only?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 14, 2018, 09:17:29 pm
Forgive me Grahame, but I thought the Tramway was cable operated.  The overhead wires were for telegraph communication to the moving cars only?

Correct - but the cable has been pulled by electric motors since 1958 - thus "electric traction".  And I didn't say anything about the overheads being to power the things.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 14, 2018, 09:37:43 pm
Forgive me Grahame, but I thought the Tramway was cable operated.  The overhead wires were for telegraph communication to the moving cars only?

Correct - but the cable has been pulled by electric motors since 1958 - thus "electric traction".  And I didn't say anything about the overheads being to power the things.
Ah, but one could argue then that actually its powered by Gas/Wind/Coal/Tide/Pumped Storage etc...... ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 14, 2018, 11:55:16 pm
...
Near Llanwern Steelworks there are some piled bases being used in pairs with what looks like a steel casting joining the piles and the mast attached in the middle.  I imagine this is because of the marshy ground, but what interests me most about these is whether they put in the piles an exact distance apart, or whether the castings are each custom-made.  But then, nothing on this project looks as if it's been done on the cheap.

Do you mean one like the stanchion at the left? Sorry it's such a busy picture; Reading's like that.

My theory on those (never having seen anything authoritative) is that it's to resist a side-force at the top without a stay. If you look closely at the top of that stanchion, there are two wires (catenary and contact) attached to clamps and going off to the right. They pull the top parallel to the track with about three tons of force combined. In most cases, such single uprights or pairs supporting portals are supported by stays - as is the portal in the picture.

In this case, there's stuff in the way where the piled base for a stay would have to go. The alternative would be a guy on the nearer side (i.e. opposite the wires) but there's stuff in the way there too. Hence the two bases, and perhaps a bigger steel section, so it can withstand the overturning moment.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on November 15, 2018, 07:24:53 pm
...
Near Llanwern Steelworks there are some piled bases being used in pairs with what looks like a steel casting joining the piles and the mast attached in the middle.  I imagine this is because of the marshy ground, but what interests me most about these is whether they put in the piles an exact distance apart, or whether the castings are each custom-made.  But then, nothing on this project looks as if it's been done on the cheap.

Do you mean one like the stanchion at the left? Sorry it's such a busy picture; Reading's like that.

My theory on those (never having seen anything authoritative) is that it's to resist a side-force at the top without a stay. If you look closely at the top of that stanchion, there are two wires (catenary and contact) attached to clamps and going off to the right. They pull the top parallel to the track with about three tons of force combined. In most cases, such single uprights or pairs supporting portals are supported by stays - as is the portal in the picture.

In this case, there's stuff in the way where the piled base for a stay would have to go. The alternative would be a guy on the nearer side (i.e. opposite the wires) but there's stuff in the way there too. Hence the two bases, and perhaps a bigger steel section, so it can withstand the overturning moment.

Yes - just like that, but oriented at right-angles to the track.  There are similar ones just for the stays, and those, of course, are parallel with the track - in other words there are some masts making use of 4 piles!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 15, 2018, 08:18:58 pm
...
Near Llanwern Steelworks there are some piled bases being used in pairs with what looks like a steel casting joining the piles and the mast attached in the middle.  I imagine this is because of the marshy ground, but what interests me most about these is whether they put in the piles an exact distance apart, or whether the castings are each custom-made.  But then, nothing on this project looks as if it's been done on the cheap.

Do you mean one like the stanchion at the left? Sorry it's such a busy picture; Reading's like that.

My theory on those (never having seen anything authoritative) is that it's to resist a side-force at the top without a stay. If you look closely at the top of that stanchion, there are two wires (catenary and contact) attached to clamps and going off to the right. They pull the top parallel to the track with about three tons of force combined. In most cases, such single uprights or pairs supporting portals are supported by stays - as is the portal in the picture.

In this case, there's stuff in the way where the piled base for a stay would have to go. The alternative would be a guy on the nearer side (i.e. opposite the wires) but there's stuff in the way there too. Hence the two bases, and perhaps a bigger steel section, so it can withstand the overturning moment.




The lower of the conductors will be the earth wire, the upper one is likely to be the ATF (Auto Transformer feed).  It is essential that during construction of the overhead line it is possible to bond the catenary and ATF to earth; even though the OLE and ATF will not have been made live they can be come charged due to static and induction.   


You will see as the wires are run out and placed on insulators either the conductors are directly clamped to a mast or are the work progresses removable earth bonds are fitted


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on November 18, 2018, 10:14:34 am
Just found this on YouTube may be of interest?.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5nLwKRtfOKs&feature=youtu.be


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 18, 2018, 03:23:56 pm
Just found this on YouTube may be of interest?.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5nLwKRtfOKs&feature=youtu.be
Thanks for posting that. Interesting.  In my days on the WCML in the Late 1960/Early 1970s, the MK1 OLE wasn't that slack and I certainly don't remember that much uplift.  I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eXPassenger on November 18, 2018, 03:50:40 pm
I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph

I do not think that H&S would allow that today.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 18, 2018, 03:58:57 pm
I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph

I do not think that H&S would allow that today.
The cages were screened and earthed.  It wasn't possible to push even your fingures through the caging mesh so I don't see the problem.  And were quite a few electrical flashes as pantographs passed by as well (especially in frosty/icy weather).  I used to enjoy it.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on November 18, 2018, 04:02:47 pm
Just found this on YouTube may be of interest?.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5nLwKRtfOKs&feature=youtu.be
Thanks for posting that. Interesting.  In my days on the WCML in the Late 1960/Early 1970s, the MK1 OLE wasn't that slack and I certainly don't remember that much uplift.  I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph ;D


My pleasure S&T thought you might find it interesting.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on November 18, 2018, 04:24:03 pm
I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph

I do not think that H&S would allow that today.
I think they do.  I’m fairly sure they are still being installed, are there not a few in the Reading station area?

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 18, 2018, 04:53:41 pm
Just found this on YouTube may be of interest?.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5nLwKRtfOKs&feature=youtu.be
Thanks for posting that. Interesting.  In my days on the WCML in the Late 1960/Early 1970s, the MK1 OLE wasn't that slack and I certainly don't remember that much uplift.  I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph ;D


The Mk 1 may have been fixed tension in those days, very little give which surprisingly enough meant lower line speed.   The up lift of series 1 & 2 I doubt is more than Mk 3.


I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph

I do not think that H&S would allow that today.
I think they do.  I’m fairly sure they are still being installed, are there not a few in the Reading station area?

Paul

Cages for signal maintenance are an option of last resort now, especially with LED signal heads, preferred methods are either from a MEWP (Mobile Elevated Working Platform) aka a cherry picker or on winch / tilt over mast.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 18, 2018, 04:56:31 pm
Just found this on YouTube may be of interest?.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5nLwKRtfOKs&feature=youtu.be
Thanks for posting that. Interesting.  In my days on the WCML in the Late 1960/Early 1970s, the MK1 OLE wasn't that slack and I certainly don't remember that much uplift.  I speak from a position of authority on that as I used to be hanging in a signal cage between tracks and having pantographs passing me at about 2.5m away at 100mph ;D

For Series 1, the design pantograph uplift is 80 mm, with a maximum of 200 mm allowed for before bits hit each other. The allowed circumflex in a single-span overlap (which AIUI is the static rise in the two contact wire heights where they are equal) is 10-70 mm. The picture doesn't look much different from those figures allowing for the foreshortening that exaggerates the bounce and floppiness of all the wires.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 18, 2018, 05:37:53 pm
Thanks for that STUVING.  Maybe its just that the video was taken with a slightly phototelescopic lens?  By the way, did you mean 200mm and not 200m?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 18, 2018, 06:37:55 pm
Thanks for that STUVING.  Maybe its just that the video was taken with a slightly phototelescopic lens?  By the way, did you mean 200mm and not 200m?

Yes, of course, thanks. You know the perspective is misleading because the supports and registration arms look so close to each other, on plain line where you know they aren't. It's even quite hard to see which bits are attached to which portal.

There are lots of Knightons, this must be the one between Uffington and Shrivenham - though the crossing was closed several years ago, and was named for nothing more than a copse.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on November 18, 2018, 08:00:20 pm
Hmm. It was clearly taken with a telephoto lens though the uplift from the pantograph looked pretty normal to me.

Knighton is a bit more than a copse, it's a hamlet/village about a mile south of the site of the crossing.

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.5834848,-1.5930662,3a,75y,180h,90t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sh4p0dvfEfXIXEJv-p1TSYA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

Here's the site of Knighton Crossing (before electrification), it's on the road between Knighton village and Longcot.

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.5992317,-1.6024652,3a,75y,319.26h,86.35t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sYYEmXfoIekHu-ZQ1G8oxGg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

It was replaced by this underbridge on Claypit Lane between Uffington and Longcot which the Knighton road was diverted into.Might have been at the time HSTs were introduced in 1976 or even earlier?

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.5997639,-1.6008706,3a,75y,342.34h,101.29t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1symZBAt4wGsQSgTExObcU8A!2e0!7i13312!8i6656



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 18, 2018, 08:15:28 pm
Knighton is a bit more than a copse, it's a hamlet/village about a mile south of the site of the crossing.

Fair enough - I apologise to all Knightonians about that. Mapmakers have decided that Compton Beauchamp is a more important place, for some reason.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 18, 2018, 10:58:23 pm
I can confirm that Knighton is a hamlet within the parish of Compton Beauchamp and although not large is a quite a high proportion of the parish as a whole.

I can also confirm that Knighton crossing was closed as part of the HST works in the 1970's. In fact Claypit lane was diverted with a new bridge constructed under the railway. The current connecting road from the road from Knighton was actually the original connection to allow Claypits lane to cross the railway at Knighton Crossing.   


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Oxonhutch on November 19, 2018, 05:52:05 am
Adrian Vaughan "Signalman's Reflections" has a section on working Knighton Crossing as a school boy in the 1950s, and the role it played in regulation traffic to and from Chippenham. He also relates how the signalman of the day got its status, and hence his pay, raised by having the locals (Knightonians perhaps) use the crossing a lot more on assessment day.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Drkpm on November 22, 2018, 02:00:55 pm
PAD/SWA.. 1B25, Departed Swindon this morning with its “Pan still up”...Slowed to a near stop, before the Pan was dropped and the diesels started......How much are these “ Professionals “ paid ?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 22, 2018, 02:39:52 pm
PAD/SWA.. 1B25, Departed Swindon this morning with its “Pan still up”...Slowed to a near stop, before the Pan was dropped and the diesels started......How much are these “ Professionals “ paid ?


Welcome to the forum, Drkpm ... I'm guessing that's a rhetorical question about salary levels?

Is that the first report of a passenger carrying train leaving Swindon westbound under electric traction - perhaps part of testing / training, and intentionally done?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Rooke on November 22, 2018, 10:29:42 pm
Travelled on 1615hrs Pad/Swansea 9 car set yesterday under the pan until BPW then diesel.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightf48544 on November 23, 2018, 10:16:22 am
Travelled on 1615hrs Pad/Swansea 9 car set yesterday under the pan until BPW then diesel.

What about Steventon bridge just after Didcot?

Big article in Dec Modern Railways showing signage for drivers regarding dropping the pan and gong diesel to traverse the bridge. Not sure I fully understand the procedure.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 23, 2018, 10:38:15 am
Big article in Dec Modern Railways showing signage for drivers regarding dropping the pan and gong diesel to traverse the bridge. Not sure I fully understand the procedure.

Basically the driver selects diesel mode at Moreton cutting, runs on diesel through Didcot and as far as Causeway and at a section of OHLE that has been specially tensioned, indicated by lineside signage, at Causeway they select electric mode to raise the pan and continue on electric to Swindon where diesel mode is once again currently selected.

Signage consists of an advance warning, a raise pan sign and a 'too late, don't raise pan sign!' at the end of the section.  If you leave it too late you can't change over to electric unless doing less than 20mph.

There are no in cab indications, though eventually the APCo (Automatic Power Changeover) system should be commissioned which does the changeover automatically.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 23, 2018, 10:40:00 am
Info elsewhere suggests a 387 can go through it with PAN up, at not more than 60mph.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 23, 2018, 10:41:47 am
Yes, that's right.  Though not yet - but that will happen once Swindon Cocklebury sidings start being used for 387 stabling.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on November 23, 2018, 07:33:01 pm
Why will 387s need to go to Swindon?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 23, 2018, 07:36:53 pm
Why will 387s need to go to Swindon?

So they can be stored there overnight. 

Will they actually go into the platform or be able to go straight to / from the sidings?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on November 23, 2018, 07:38:19 pm
Why will 387s need to go to Swindon?
I believe they’re being evicted from the Crossrail facilities at Maidenhead.  Swindon seems to have been chosen for new stabling only within the last year or so, it seems to have superseded an earlier proposal for EMU sidings at Didcot.

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 23, 2018, 07:43:50 pm
Why will 387s need to go to Swindon?

So they can be stored there overnight. 

Will they actually go into the platform or be able to go straight to / from the sidings?
The signalling allows entry/exit from/to the Didcot direction but they can also enter/exit from the Swindon station end with a reversal shunt.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 24, 2018, 08:22:02 pm
Why will 387s need to go to Swindon?
I believe they’re being evicted from the Crossrail facilities at Maidenhead.  Swindon seems to have been chosen for new stabling only within the last year or so, it seems to have superseded an earlier proposal for EMU sidings at Didcot.

Paul


Looks like OOC Elizabeth Line depot is getting tight for space and I expect facilities on the GE are getting tight for space so I suspect Maidenhead is need.  Also through next year of course more and more route knowledge training is going to be needed for the Elizabeth Line drivers in readiness for a years time …………………..

..................… Yep is its getting close


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 24, 2018, 11:32:52 pm
Why will 387s need to go to Swindon?

So they can be stored there overnight. 


Another very silly question ... we have been told that there is no capacity available between Swindon and Didcot for a service that extends an hourly Oxford - Didcot shuttle to Swindon, and / or an hourly TransWilts service to Oxford.    Is that because the capacity is needed for these darned empty stock trains, or because "capacity" is a convenient excuse to give?   I appreciate top speeds 125 v 110 v 90, but then isn't the top speed 60 at the Steventon bottleneck?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on November 24, 2018, 11:34:50 pm
EDIT: This post went dramatically wrong.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 25, 2018, 12:48:56 am
Another very silly question ... we have been told that there is no capacity available between Swindon and Didcot for a service that extends an hourly Oxford - Didcot shuttle to Swindon, and / or an hourly TransWilts service to Oxford.    Is that because the capacity is needed for these darned empty stock trains, or because "capacity" is a convenient excuse to give?   I appreciate top speeds 125 v 110 v 90, but then isn't the top speed 60 at the Steventon bottleneck?

The majority, if not all, the movements to/from Swindon with 387s will be in the very early hours, or late at night.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 25, 2018, 08:55:27 am
The majority, if not all, the movements to/from Swindon with 387s will be in the very early hours, or late at night.

Yeah - that makes sense.   I wonder if and when we'll see morning peak Didcot starters to Paddington being extended back to Swindon ... and evening peak services having an extra stop.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TaplowGreen on November 25, 2018, 09:56:18 am
The majority, if not all, the movements to/from Swindon with 387s will be in the very early hours, or late at night.

Yeah - that makes sense.   I wonder if and when we'll see morning peak Didcot starters to Paddington being extended back to Swindon ... and evening peak services having an extra stop.

Why would they be?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on November 25, 2018, 08:08:29 pm
The majority, if not all, the movements to/from Swindon with 387s will be in the very early hours, or late at night.

Yeah - that makes sense.   I wonder if and when we'll see morning peak Didcot starters to Paddington being extended back to Swindon ... and evening peak services having an extra stop.

Why would they be?

I think Graham is referring to this, which is from the Western Route Study of 2015:
Quote
To accommodate this forecast passenger demand in CP6 an option has been identified to provide two additional services between London Paddington and Swindon, in the morning and evening high-peak periods (in the peak direction), calling at Didcot Parkway and Reading. These services would use the Main Lines and would need to have the requisite rolling stock performance characteristics to be compatible with other services. Additional infrastructure is likely to be required to accommodate these services. The scale of infrastructure changes depends on choices that exist to maximise the use of existing network capacity on the core corridor between London Paddington and Reading through separation of the Main and Relief line railway.

But that "additional" service was on top of the fast DMU service from Oxford and Newbury, and the full post-2018 IET service too. Those have not yet happened, or won't all be electric. So for the time being the extra paths made available by grade separating Reading are not full of IETs, making it possible to run trains now without removing the Twyford and Maidenhead semifasts (which is what that text is talking about).

There is now one 12-car (?) "peak-buster" from Didcot, which is more or less that Swindon service cut short for want of volts. I can't find any more than one - the 7:30 - though it's hard to be sure as GWR do not seem to have put it in any of their timetables. I guess one train does not a service make.

So the answer should be that train will start from Swindon (though it doesn't for this December), but may be taken away whenever the full new timetable escapes from captivity. But in reality, who knows?.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on November 25, 2018, 09:54:37 pm
There is a Paddington->Reading->Didcot service at 16:36 although this is rather early in the evening to be a 'crowdbuster' as such.

The 07:30 from Didcot in effect enables trains from Bristol and Swansea that used to stop a few minutes either side to now pass through.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on November 26, 2018, 12:06:24 am
EDIT: This post went dramatically wrong.

Not without precedent  - glad  it ended  well.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 26, 2018, 07:01:40 am
Why will 387s need to go to Swindon?

So they can be stored there overnight. 


Another very silly question ... we have been told that there is no capacity available between Swindon and Didcot for a service that extends an hourly Oxford - Didcot shuttle to Swindon, and / or an hourly TransWilts service to Oxford.    Is that because the capacity is needed for these darned empty stock trains, or because "capacity" is a convenient excuse to give?   I appreciate top speeds 125 v 110 v 90, but then isn't the top speed 60 at the Steventon bottleneck?


I suspect the main reason for the lack of Swindon - Oxford direct services is bums on seats ie lack of demand. If the service were to go into Didcot and reverse then operationally its not good also passengers may as well change trains as the journey time saving is not great.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 26, 2018, 08:01:24 am
I suspect the main reason for the lack of Swindon - Oxford direct services is bums on seats ie lack of demand. If the service were to go into Didcot and reverse then operationally its not good also passengers may as well change trains as the journey time saving is not great.

There is no lack of demand for the service. It was well loaded when it ran previously, it did not stop because it was not used. There are plenty of people who live in Swindon and work in Oxford and vice versa. The change at Didcot is an issue as it adds journey time and is disruptive.  If you add a stop at Wantage & Grove (new station) then it would have even larger demand. 

The reasons the last service stopped was that it was affecting reliability of main line services.  Electrification and use of the long loop at Wantage (currently only a goods lop?) could ease those problems, though extra services have been added or planned since, so I am not clear whether the capacity exists. 
 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on November 26, 2018, 11:36:08 am

Now departing Newbury....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=11&v=WCE47_EUehM

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on November 26, 2018, 12:01:55 pm
Seems to have done a fair few runs between Reading and Newbury yesterday while the line was shut to other traffic.

One I saw on the railcam had it coming down the Racecourse loop into Newbury and back out the same way.

I believe there are some 387 test runs scheduled for a few nights next week?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on November 26, 2018, 01:13:52 pm
EDIT: This post went dramatically wrong.

Not without precedent  - glad  it ended  well.


Whats up!, What happened.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on November 26, 2018, 01:20:09 pm
I suspect the main reason for the lack of Swindon - Oxford direct services is bums on seats ie lack of demand. If the service were to go into Didcot and reverse then operationally its not good also passengers may as well change trains as the journey time saving is not great.

There is no lack of demand for the service. It was well loaded when it ran previously, it did not stop because it was not used. There are plenty of people who live in Swindon and work in Oxford and vice versa. The change at Didcot is an issue as it adds journey time and is disruptive.  If you add a stop at Wantage & Grove (new station) then it would have even larger demand. 

The reasons the last service stopped was that it was affecting reliability of main line services.  Electrification and use of the long loop at Wantage (currently only a goods loop?) could ease those problems, though extra services have been added or planned since, so I am not clear whether the capacity exists. 
 

Lovely, I was brought up in Grove,And back in the seventies Oxfordshire County Council, Then tried to get that station reopened, But British Rail were against it.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 26, 2018, 06:55:32 pm
Lovely, I was brought up in Grove,And back in the seventies Oxfordshire County Council, Then tried to get that station reopened, But British Rail were against it.

I was brought up in Wantage. I think it was around 1977 I remember trooping round with questionnaires so someone could estimate the likely usage. 

There's probably a better thread for this sideline discussion.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on November 26, 2018, 07:26:24 pm
Lovely, I was brought up in Grove,And back in the seventies Oxfordshire County Council, Then tried to get that station reopened, But British Rail were against it.

I was brought up in Wantage. I think it was around 1977 I remember trooping round with questionnaires so someone could estimate the likely usage. 

There's probably a better thread for this sideline discussion.

I was there in 1977, that was when I heard the news, I was at King Alfreds when this happened.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: froome on November 26, 2018, 09:38:18 pm
I suspect the main reason for the lack of Swindon - Oxford direct services is bums on seats ie lack of demand. If the service were to go into Didcot and reverse then operationally its not good also passengers may as well change trains as the journey time saving is not great.

There is no lack of demand for the service. It was well loaded when it ran previously, it did not stop because it was not used. There are plenty of people who live in Swindon and work in Oxford and vice versa. The change at Didcot is an issue as it adds journey time and is disruptive.  If you add a stop at Wantage & Grove (new station) then it would have even larger demand. 

The reasons the last service stopped was that it was affecting reliability of main line services.  Electrification and use of the long loop at Wantage (currently only a goods lop?) could ease those problems, though extra services have been added or planned since, so I am not clear whether the capacity exists. 
 

There is definitely a demand for this service. However, there is now a pretty fast direct bus. I've taken this a couple of times as I worked out I could get to Oxford as quickly that way than waiting at Didcot for a connecting train, as they don't seem to connect well with the services running up from Bath Spa and Temple Meads.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on November 26, 2018, 09:43:17 pm
EDIT: This post went dramatically wrong.

Not without precedent  - glad  it ended  well.



I managed to type in many fonts and mess up quotes  ;)

Whats up!, What happened.

Edit: It has happened again. My phone is glitching so I do apologise if any further issues do occur.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 26, 2018, 10:19:04 pm
I suspect the main reason for the lack of Swindon - Oxford direct services is bums on seats ie lack of demand. If the service were to go into Didcot and reverse then operationally its not good also passengers may as well change trains as the journey time saving is not great.
There is definitely a demand for this service. However, there is now a pretty fast direct bus. I've taken this a couple of times as I worked out I could get to Oxford as quickly that way than waiting at Didcot for a connecting train, as they don't seem to connect well with the services running up from Bath Spa and Temple Meads.

Says it all about the need for a direct service. Given that the bus will often get delayed in traffic in either Swindon or Oxford (or both) and and the road is mostly 50/60mph and the line from Swindon to Didcot is mostly 125mph!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Robin Summerhill on November 27, 2018, 05:10:57 pm
I suspect the main reason for the lack of Swindon - Oxford direct services is bums on seats ie lack of demand. If the service were to go into Didcot and reverse then operationally its not good also passengers may as well change trains as the journey time saving is not great.
There is definitely a demand for this service. However, there is now a pretty fast direct bus. I've taken this a couple of times as I worked out I could get to Oxford as quickly that way than waiting at Didcot for a connecting train, as they don't seem to connect well with the services running up from Bath Spa and Temple Meads.

Says it all about the need for a direct service. Given that the bus will often get delayed in traffic in either Swindon or Oxford (or both) and and the road is mostly 50/60mph and the line from Swindon to Didcot is mostly 125mph!

If I could put a bit of perspective into this:

It can sometimes be overlooked that timetable planners for both the bus and the rail industries think along broadly similar lines. Whilst. for example. trains will have pathing allowances added into the schedule to allow for potential conflicting movements, bus timetable planners will build potential delay allowances into their schedules. This may not only be confined to expected congestion levels, but could also include such matters, for example, extended stop dwell times outside schools at chucking-out time.

The S6 Stagecoach service runs every 20 minutes between 0450 and 1735, with a reducing service (half hourly then hourly) up until the last bus at 2205 (ex-Swindon) and 2320 (ex-Oxford). Journey times vary between 1h 12m off peak to 1h 27m in the peak, so normal levels of traffic congestion are built into the timetable. There are bus lanes in and out of Oxford so no additional delays would normally be expected at that end. The routes in and out of Swindon are not usually a congestion issue, as bus lanes exist there too, although not as many.

If passenger numbers did not justify such an intensive service then Stagecoach, as a private company running an unsubsidised route, wouldn't provide it. There is clearly a demand, although some of which of course will be to intermediate towns and villages which wouldn't be catered for anyway by a through train service.

The "top speed" figures for the respective modes of transport may be interestin as a headline/ sound bite but have little relevance in the real world. A bus is unlikely to exceed 50mph and is going to stop frequently anyway, irrespective of the road's speed limit. Similarly, a train will not be doing 125mph all the way from Swindon to Oxford as it too will be slowing and accelerating for stops. What will matter to Joe Public is the overall journey time. I have already looked at that for the bus, so what about the train?

The par for the course time from Swindon to Didcot is 17 minutes and Didcot to Oxford 15 to 19 depending on stops. Therefore, in theory and allowing, say, 6 minutes for the Didcot change, the journey could be done in around 40 minutes, so roughly half the time that the bus takes. The Swindon to Didcot service is rather erratic, with somewhere between 2 and 4 trains per hour arriving (off peak) at 03, 17, 29 and 47 in the "even" hours, and 17 and 29 in the "odd" hours. Between Didcot and Oxford there are 2 trains an hour with a third every two hours, but the two and hour pattern is not clock face - quite close to 00 and 30 departures from Didcot, but they vary by a few minutes either way and a few minutes can be crucial in cases like these.

Connection times are, in all honesty, pretty poor. Provided everything is running to time, the "17 arrival" would more or less guarantee getting the "30 departure," as would the 47 arrival and 00 departure. But, as someone else has said, the Didcot 29 arrivals come from Bath and Bristol, so no good for a "quick" connection from those places.

So if you were only going from Swindon to Oxford then the minimum transit time by train would be c. 45 minutes. If you started from Bristol or Bath then the Swindon-Oxford transit time would be closer to 62 minutes.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 27, 2018, 08:40:55 pm
If I could put a bit of perspective into this:

I agree with much of what you say, Robin, but have a few comments:

The S6 Stagecoach service runs every 20 minutes between 0450 and 1735, with a reducing service (half hourly then hourly) up until the last bus at 2205 (ex-Swindon) and 2320 (ex-Oxford). Journey times vary between 1h 12m off peak to 1h 27m in the peak, so normal levels of traffic congestion are built into the timetable. There are bus lanes in and out of Oxford so no additional delays would normally be expected at that end. The routes in and out of Swindon are not usually a congestion issue, as bus lanes exist there too, although not as many.

If passenger numbers did not justify such an intensive service then Stagecoach, as a private company running an unsubsidised route, wouldn't provide it. There is clearly a demand, although some of which of course will be to intermediate towns and villages which wouldn't be catered for anyway by a through train service.

There isn't really a proper bus lane out of Oxford which can often cause congestion issues, thirty minutes to go three miles along the Botley Road to the A420 turn off isn't uncommon, especially on a Friday evening.  Whilst the S6 is a pretty good 'express' service, it still detours off the A420 to serve Kingston Bagpuize and Faringdon.  The latter involves a 3-5 minute wait and technically the bus then becomes a different service, though in reality it is a through service with through ticketing.  This is why the slightly confusing Faringdon for Swindon destination is displayed on the bus.  Not sure whether that is due to county borders or driving hours, but there is some silly reason.

Either way, if you cut out the stops at the villages, at least ten minutes could be saved, but as you say that is what makes the service viable.  It's slow enough to put off most commuters though

The par for the course time from Swindon to Didcot is 17 minutes and Didcot to Oxford 15 to 19 depending on stops. Therefore, in theory and allowing, say, 6 minutes for the Didcot change, the journey could be done in around 40 minutes, so roughly half the time that the bus takes. The Swindon to Didcot service is rather erratic, with somewhere between 2 and 4 trains per hour arriving (off peak) at 03, 17, 29 and 47 in the "even" hours, and 17 and 29 in the "odd" hours. Between Didcot and Oxford there are 2 trains an hour with a third every two hours, but the two and hour pattern is not clock face - quite close to 00 and 30 departures from Didcot, but they vary by a few minutes either way and a few minutes can be crucial in cases like these.

Connection times are, in all honesty, pretty poor. Provided everything is running to time, the "17 arrival" would more or less guarantee getting the "30 departure," as would the 47 arrival and 00 departure. But, as someone else has said, the Didcot 29 arrivals come from Bath and Bristol, so no good for a "quick" connection from those places.

So if you were only going from Swindon to Oxford then the minimum transit time by train would be c. 45 minutes. If you started from Bristol or Bath then the Swindon-Oxford transit time would be closer to 62 minutes.

There is no reason why the Swindon to Oxford service has to call and reverse at Didcot of course - though in many cases it might still make sense to do so.  Avoid Didcot and you would have a potential journey time between Swindon and Oxford of under 30 minutes, as was the case for the occasional Oxford<>Bristol Turbo that used to omit Didcot when that service operated.  My belief that the best way (in terms of chances of it happening, and maximising the potential market) is to route the East-West Rail services between Reading and Milton Keynes/Bedford to start at Bristol.  I've said it before, but that would not only provide through journeys between Swindon and Oxford, but also provide a more long distance regional service eventually running between Bristol and Cambridge/Norwich/Ipswich.  Although E-W Rail is no longer being electrified, initially at least, bi-mode trains now offer potential rolling stock.

Additional advantages of such a service would be providing an appropriate service for reopened stations at places like Corsham, Grove and Wootton Bassett - though you would need to be careful about compromising through journey times with too many intermediate stops.  And of course there is precious little capacity between Didcot and Swindon available.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: metalrail on November 27, 2018, 09:39:28 pm
There is no reason why the Swindon to Oxford service has to call and reverse at Didcot of course - though in many cases it might still make sense to do so.  Avoid Didcot and you would have a potential journey time between Swindon and Oxford of under 30 minutes, as was the case for the occasional Oxford<>Bristol Turbo that used to omit Didcot when that service operated.  My belief that the best way (in terms of chances of it happening, and maximising the potential market) is to route the East-West Rail services between Reading and Milton Keynes/Bedford to start at Bristol.  I've said it before, but that would not only provide through journeys between Swindon and Oxford, but also provide a more long distance regional service eventually running between Bristol and Cambridge/Norwich/Ipswich.  Although E-W Rail is no longer being electrified, initially at least, bi-mode trains now offer potential rolling stock.

Additional advantages of such a service would be providing an appropriate service for reopened stations at places like Corsham, Grove and Wootton Bassett - though you would need to be careful about compromising through journey times with too many intermediate stops.  And of course there is precious little capacity between Didcot and Swindon available.

I, for one, was pretty gutted when the Bristol to Oxford Turbo direct service that used Foxhall Junction and therefore bypassed Didcot ceased, as I used that service quite frequently when it was available.  I did try it a few times after once it returned to the current situation of a Bristol - Didcot train and 'hopefully' timing a decent enough connection, but remember several late nights sat around for ages at Didcot waiting for a return train home.  Was definitely a backward step in my view, and one that should easily be able to be reinstated


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 27, 2018, 09:55:37 pm
I, for one, was pretty gutted when the Bristol to Oxford Turbo direct service that used Foxhall Junction and therefore bypassed Didcot ceased, as I used that service quite frequently when it was available.  I did try it a few times after once it returned to the current situation of a Bristol - Didcot train and 'hopefully' timing a decent enough connection, but remember several late nights sat around for ages at Didcot waiting for a return train home.  Was definitely a backward step in my view, and one that should easily be able to be reinstated

Ditto ... really hate pulling into Didcot and seeing a potential connection pulling out as you pull in. All the more horrid when trying to connect onward at Swindon too. 

In fact ... our "To Oxford from the West" board has that title to help rattle a few cages for this service  ;D ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Robin Summerhill on November 27, 2018, 10:05:01 pm
Whilst I accept your comments about the lack of an outbound  bus lane for the majority of Botley Road, a close examination of the timetable shows the 17 minutes allowed off peak from Gloucester Green to Tubney is increased to 22 in the peak. I suspect that that allowance is deemed by the bus timetablers sufficient for normal congestion. As is the case with railway timetable planners, you simply cannot factor in allowances for every eventuality because if you did your timetabled service would be uncompetitively slow. At the moment the biggest competition threat on that route comes from the private car, and they too will suffer the same issues getting out of Oxford in the Friday peak.

I too cannot understand why a perfectly accurately described 66 bus from Swindon to Oxford has recently become the S6 with that odd destination display. There might be a bit of "railway thinking" in this though, as when you are on a train that stops somewhere "for" somewhere else it suggests that you have to do something else to get to your journey's end (eg Ashchurch for Tewkesbury). On the one recent occasion that I have used this newly-titled service I asked the driver if I had to change, and the conversation that ensued suggested he didn't like it either because this question is being asked by the passengers time and time again. "Swindon to Oxford via Faringdon" would be fine, but Stagecoach don't currently appear to agree....

I wouldn't agree that is an express service as such - it is just a normal bus service between the two points. An express bus service would be indicated by limited stops to differentiate from an express coach service that might have no stops, or perhaps only one or two. Back in the 1960s my timetable tells me (its surprising what junk I have kicking around here...) that the old 74 service took 1hr 43m for the run; bus engine and gearbox technology have improved significantly over that time :)

I also agree about the desirability of extending any future Swindon to Oxford service both eastbound and eastbound, and query why Didcot West Curve couldn't be used to speed the service up.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 28, 2018, 12:16:24 am
The routes in and out of Swindon are not usually a congestion issue, as bus lanes exist there too, although not as many.

If you are on the train coming into Swindon from Didcot from the East during the evening peak (and at some other times too) and look out of the window just past Bourton as you pass over the A420 at Acorn Bridge you will get an excellent view of the 1.5 to 2 mile queue of traffic for the A420/A419 roundabout.  Believe me it can take a while.

The next mile to Greenbridge Roundabout also has no bus lane and can be very congested. 

Past there is is then dual carriageway so it is not too bad and once you get to the Queen's Drive roundabout there are bus lanes.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Worcester_Passenger on November 28, 2018, 07:13:17 am

This is why the slightly confusing Faringdon for Swindon destination is displayed on the bus.  Not sure whether that is due to county borders or driving hours, but there is some silly reason.

Nothing to do with county borders, but somewhat to do with driving hours.

We have two sets of driving hours regulations. They're not organised by how far or how long the driver drives in a day, but by the length of the route. 'Domestic' regulations apply to services which are less than 50 km, 'EU' regulations apply over 50km. 'EU' regulations involve the use of a tachograph. This very artificial break was introduced as a piece of legislation to protect German railways from competition. Mixing driving work between the two gets very complicated. The arrangement at Farringdon is our DfT's way of getting round the issue of the length of the route. On Stagecoach's timetables there's a little chain-link icon which indicates a through service of this kind. Other operators have similar marks.

A single break of registration on one route isn't too bad. The worst case that I know is the TrawsCambria T4 between Cardiff and Newtown, which has separate registrations that break it at Llandrindod Well, Builth Wells, Brecon and Merthyr Tydfil.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 28, 2018, 08:09:42 am
When I am feeling brave (or when Chris from Nalisea is around to do it) I/we will split out the Swindon <-> Oxford part of this thread ... in the meantime I'll compound the offtopicallity.

Sub-regional Transport Boards (SNTBs) across the wider region that the Coffee Shop covers are likely to have an impact in the future on what does and doesn't get connected economically and for transport purposes.  Of note is England's Econoimic Heartland (http://www.englandseconomicheartland.com/Pages/strategic-leadership.aspx) which stretches from Swindon in the west through Cambridgeshire in the east. It would seem logical for rapid mass transit to work right across the area west to east, as well as the multiple mort / south rail lines already crossing through it.    On that basis, it's probably that the political will for Swindon to Link to Oxford (and then on to Bicester, Milton Keynes, Bedford, etc) will be strong rather that leaving Swindon as a slowly connected poorer ghetto (as far as public transport in the area is concerned) on the western flank.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Robin Summerhill on November 28, 2018, 10:15:34 am
The routes in and out of Swindon are not usually a congestion issue, as bus lanes exist there too, although not as many.

If you are on the train coming into Swindon from Didcot from the East during the evening peak (and at some other times too) and look out of the window just past Bourton as you pass over the A420 at Acorn Bridge you will get an excellent view of the 1.5 to 2 mile queue of traffic for the A420/A419 roundabout.  Believe me it can take a while.

The next mile to Greenbridge Roundabout also has no bus lane and can be very congested. 

Past there is is then dual carriageway so it is not too bad and once you get to the Queen's Drive roundabout there are bus lanes.

As I am a specialist in taking threads off on tangents I will continue, pending Graham's rearrangements... ;)

There is an old saying we all know - "time flies when you're enjoying yourself." The reverse is also true - time drags when you're not.

Since my return to regular bus travel after a 50 year absence once I qualified for a bus pass, I have spent a good deal of time sitting on buses in traffic jams. With little else to do at such times I have taken to timing the delays, and I have been more than surprised but less than astonished at the results. Stopping at the back of a jam thinking "we're going to be 30 minutes sitting in this lot" only to find that we've cleared the obstacle 8 minutes later, and the timetable allowed 2 minutes anyway, is very common. The same applies to railways too of course - you can be standing at a red signal at Challow for 3 minutes and it feels like longer than the time taken to get up there from Chippenham in the first place!

On the A420 approach to Swindon the main congestion point is the lights by the Police HQ. Traffic will move forward there in "chunks" as the lights change. As there are no lights on the roundabout (as far as I recall) then getting onto it will be random but generally not causing too much additional delay


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on November 28, 2018, 11:44:16 am

We have two sets of driving hours regulations. They're not organised by how far or how long the driver drives in a day, but by the length of the route. 'Domestic' regulations apply to services which are less than 50 km, 'EU' regulations apply over 50km. 'EU' regulations involve the use of a tachograph. This very artificial break was introduced as a piece of legislation to protect German railways from competition. Mixing driving work between the two gets very complicated. The arrangement at Farringdon is our DfT's way of getting round the issue of the length of the route. On Stagecoach's timetables there's a little chain-link icon which indicates a through service of this kind. Other operators have similar marks.


There was, I seem to recollect, similar EU "involvement" on the Bath to Salisbury bus route. There used to be a through bus for the whole journey (about 40 miles) - then it changed to two buses: Bath to Warminster and Warminster to Salisbury - this was blamed on the EU.  Now there is, once again, a through bus with a change of drivers at the Trading Estate in Westbury.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on November 28, 2018, 12:18:10 pm

We have two sets of driving hours regulations. They're not organised by how far or how long the driver drives in a day, but by the length of the route. 'Domestic' regulations apply to services which are less than 50 km, 'EU' regulations apply over 50km. 'EU' regulations involve the use of a tachograph. This very artificial break was introduced as a piece of legislation to protect German railways from competition. Mixing driving work between the two gets very complicated. The arrangement at Farringdon is our DfT's way of getting round the issue of the length of the route. On Stagecoach's timetables there's a little chain-link icon which indicates a through service of this kind. Other operators have similar marks.


There was, I seem to recollect, similar EU "involvement" on the Bath to Salisbury bus route. There used to be a through bus for the whole journey (about 40 miles) - then it changed to two buses: Bath to Warminster and Warminster to Salisbury - this was blamed on the EU.  Now there is, once again, a through bus with a change of drivers at the Trading Estate in Westbury.

Why not just fit a tachograph? After all the rail industry has all sorts of safety devices and has a far better safety record than the bus industry. Or is the bus industry not as bothered about safety as the rail industry?

Or did someone just want to blame the EU for something else they didn't like, but needed doing?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on November 29, 2018, 12:19:49 pm
EDIT: This post went dramatically wrong.

Not without precedent  - glad  it ended  well.



I managed to type in many fonts and mess up quotes  ;)

Whats up!, What happened.

Edit: It has happened again. My phone is glitching so I do apologise if any further issues do occur.


I Always use a computer on a desk at home to do my posting, has a 24 inch touchscreen.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on November 29, 2018, 01:23:25 pm

We have two sets of driving hours regulations. They're not organised by how far or how long the driver drives in a day, but by the length of the route. 'Domestic' regulations apply to services which are less than 50 km, 'EU' regulations apply over 50km. 'EU' regulations involve the use of a tachograph. This very artificial break was introduced as a piece of legislation to protect German railways from competition. Mixing driving work between the two gets very complicated. The arrangement at Farringdon is our DfT's way of getting round the issue of the length of the route. On Stagecoach's timetables there's a little chain-link icon which indicates a through service of this kind. Other operators have similar marks.


There was, I seem to recollect, similar EU "involvement" on the Bath to Salisbury bus route. There used to be a through bus for the whole journey (about 40 miles) - then it changed to two buses: Bath to Warminster and Warminster to Salisbury - this was blamed on the EU.  Now there is, once again, a through bus with a change of drivers at the Trading Estate in Westbury.

Why not just fit a tachograph? After all the rail industry has all sorts of safety devices and has a far better safety record than the bus industry. Or is the bus industry not as bothered about safety as the rail industry?

Or did someone just want to blame the EU for something else they didn't like, but needed doing?

I rather suspect that if you have a tachograph, you start needing secure places to store them in the office, trained people to monitor and control them, annual checks on the kit, spot checks from the DVLA (or whoever) to ensure enforcement etc. If that's the case then you can quite see why the bus companies would be very, very keen to avoid having to use them.

As for safety systems, I suspect that most buses these days have forward and rear facing cameras which record to disk (along with GPS and accelerometer data) in case of an accident. But there's a big difference between having that data "just in case" and having to legally store it and ensure compliance with rules. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on November 30, 2018, 10:33:55 am
Are the driver's hours rules without a tachograph the same as those with?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on November 30, 2018, 04:44:14 pm
Are the driver's hours rules without a tachograph the same as those with?

All bus drivers, self employed included, work under domestic driving hours. All drivers can only drive for 5 hours without a full 30 minute break.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: GBM on November 30, 2018, 06:03:02 pm

All bus drivers, self employed included, work under domestic driving hours. Story can only drive for 5 hours without a full 30 minute break.
[/quote]
Actually five and a half hours then a 31 minute minimum break MUST be taken under domestic hours.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on November 30, 2018, 07:28:56 pm
To bring the topic back on to electrification...

Apparently two sides of the Maindee triangle at Newport are being wired, but not the third (North to East Jns) which left me wondering how they decide which junctions need to be done, and which not.  The chances of electrification from Newport to Hereford seem vanishingly remote, so is the reason for doing the curve that an electric train might be sent that way by mistake?  And that the driver would figure out that something was wrong before 'falling off' the catenary? 

If a train takes an un-wired turnout with pantograph up, does anything bad happen, anyway?  I guess it's almost impossible for the same thing to happen in the opposite direction - from a non-electrified line onto an electrified one...

Is an IET clever enough to know whether there's a catenary wire above it?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 30, 2018, 07:47:30 pm
If a train takes an un-wired turnout with pantograph up, does anything bad happen, anyway? 

Is an IET clever enough to know whether there's a catenary wire above it?

Its not clever enough currently.  A feature called APCo (Automatic Power Changeover) is fitted to the train which will automatically change to diesel using track balises, but it is not currently working.  Running out of catenary would mean there is nothing to stop the pantograph from raising to its fullest extent.  Expect it to be removed from the train when it gets to the next overbridge!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on November 30, 2018, 08:07:02 pm
If a train takes an un-wired turnout with pantograph up, does anything bad happen, anyway? 

Is an IET clever enough to know whether there's a catenary wire above it?

 Running out of catenary would mean there is nothing to stop the pantograph from raising to its fullest extent.  Expect it to be removed from the train when it gets to the next overbridge!

There is a device called ADD (Automatic Dropping Device) ……….. yep electrification Engineers are an inventive lot when it comes to naming thing s ;D basically if the carbons come off (or the entire pan head) or the Pan goes beyond a certain upper limit the Pan will drop back into the Pan Well.

There will be certain design and operating risk assessments in place against the cost of wiring a cord off of a junction


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Incider on November 30, 2018, 09:42:26 pm
If a train takes an un-wired turnout with pantograph up, does anything bad happen, anyway? 

Is an IET clever enough to know whether there's a catenary wire above it?

Its not clever enough currently.  A feature called APCo (Automatic Power Changeover) is fitted to the train which will automatically change to diesel using track balises, but it is not currently working.  Running out of catenary would mean there is nothing to stop the pantograph from raising to its fullest extent.  Expect it to be removed from the train when it gets to the next overbridge!

Not true, ADD will drop the pan.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on November 30, 2018, 09:53:01 pm
I stand corrected.  :D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Sassafras on December 01, 2018, 10:11:39 am
 As I've said before, being an 'old Southern' man, the unpopular
 3rd rail did seem a lot less complicated.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on December 01, 2018, 11:04:25 am
As I've said before, being an 'old Southern' man, the unpopular
 3rd rail did seem a lot less complicated.

Not said here before - that's your first post - welcome to the forum!   ;D

Also as an immigrant from third rail land, I really do look and wonder at all this string!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: YouKnowNothing on December 01, 2018, 11:38:12 am
Isn’t it to do with the power supply requirements? I.e. the the long length of the route would have required additional transformers every X miles instead of every Y miles?


As I've said before, being an 'old Southern' man, the unpopular
 3rd rail did seem a lot less complicated.

Not said here before - that's your first post - welcome to the forum!   ;D

Also as an immigrant from third rail land, I really do look and wonder at all this string!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 01, 2018, 04:41:23 pm
You don't get the same performance from 3rd Rail either - 108mph is the world record.  And added safety risks of course.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 01, 2018, 05:47:49 pm
As I've said before, being an 'old Southern' man, the unpopular
 3rd rail did seem a lot less complicated.


Its not unknown for units to get "gapped" either through units operating over routes where a full gapping survey has not been done or for example at Wokingham a unit get the wrong road and heads off to Guildford and runs out of juice rail.

You don't get the same performance from 3rd Rail either - 108mph is the world record.  And added safety risks of course.

This is true, also to get the higher performace the "nominal" Voltage is closer to 800V than it is to 750V.  But current collection is the main problem the anount of down force and surface area of the shoe either means lots of shoes or ones that get worn out quickly.  Power supply verses the number of trains becomes an issue meaning a substation ever 4 miles intead of every 10 for an AT 25kV system


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on December 01, 2018, 05:50:07 pm
You don't get the same performance from 3rd Rail either - 108mph is the world record.  And added safety risks of course.

For some places / services, 90 m.p.h. with good acceleration makes sense ... getting away from GW main line, but infill on Wokingham - Reigate would make senses to me ... and I don't see in excess of 90 m.p.h. being needed at Cowden or Three Oaks and Guestling!     Happy to have third rail up from Southampton area to Wiltshire and taking it to Bristol; I doubt the good folks of Bath would complain about it being unsightly.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: JontyMort on December 01, 2018, 06:36:19 pm
You don't get the same performance from 3rd Rail either - 108mph is the world record.  And added safety risks of course.

For some places / services, 90 m.p.h. with good acceleration makes sense ... getting away from GW main line, but infill on Wokingham - Reigate would make senses to me ... and I don't see in excess of 90 m.p.h. being needed at Cowden or Three Oaks and Guestling!     Happy to have third rail up from Southampton area to Wiltshire and taking it to Bristol; I doubt the good folks of Bath would complain about it being unsightly.

I suppose they might get away with Salisbury on the grounds that Totton/Eastleigh-Romsey-Worting Junction via the Laverstock Curve** was "infill" but even then Salisbury itself isn't.

**The curve is the straight side of the triangle, and the other two routes are more curved than the curve - glad we cleared that up.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on December 01, 2018, 07:54:37 pm
Happy to have third rail up from Southampton area to Wiltshire and taking it to Bristol; I doubt the good folks of Bath would complain about it being unsightly.

Apart from the safety considerations, the additional cost of DC power equipment (more substation and the need for rectifiers). Does the amount of traffic justfy electrification on this line? Surely there are higher priorities. It cannot even be justified as infill! Even west of Bathampton there would only be the Southampton Bristol services using it as the IET's don't run on DC. Electrifying Bathampton to Bristol on 3rd Rail would be extremely short-sighted and a waste of money! 

New electrification should be 25kV OLE.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on December 01, 2018, 08:51:22 pm
Agree, all new electrification should be 25KV AC .
Third rail should be confined to existing routes and to very minor additions, infills, and extensions in third rail areas.

The former "Southern" third rail system is allegedly the largest in the world, and is much more extensive than is sensible at such a low voltage. It was never properly planned, but "just sort of grew".

The merits of DC electric trains over steam power became clear about 100 years ago for intensively used inner suburban routes, and then gradually spread to the outer suburbs and eventually as far as the south coast.

Third rail needs relatively low voltages, and that needs frequent substations which adds to expense for equipment and land purchase.
A lethal voltage exposed at ankle height is a greater danger than a much higher voltage that is well out of reach.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on December 01, 2018, 10:29:05 pm
AIUI, the view of the various regulatory bodies on 3rd rail is that you can only extend it for short stretches where you can very tightly control access to the tracks and there's no other option.

In other words, something like new sidings/depots is permissible, the underground extension to Battersea is fine and you could probably get away with well-fenced urban cutting/viaduct. But don't even think about new third rail through open country, with level crossings etc.     

 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on December 02, 2018, 12:01:08 am
AIUI, the view of the various regulatory bodies on 3rd rail is that you can only extend it for short stretches where you can very tightly control access to the tracks and there's no other option.
In other words, something like new sidings/depots is permissible, the underground extension to Battersea is fine and you could probably get away with well-fenced urban cutting/viaduct. But don't even think about new third rail through open country, with level crossings etc.     

Yes, for safety reasons, significant expansion is effectively prohibited, and for financial reasons no one in the rail industry WANTS any significant expansion.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on December 02, 2018, 11:40:56 am
From different thread:
Testing the overhead for the first time between Newbury and Reading/Scours Lane


More IET overhead testing pencilled in for this coming Tuesday & Wednesday, with class 387 testing for the first time Wednesday & Thursday night


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on December 02, 2018, 12:17:47 pm
Happy to have third rail up from Southampton area to Wiltshire and taking it to Bristol; I doubt the good folks of Bath would complain about it being unsightly.

Apart from the safety considerations, the additional cost of DC power equipment (more substation and the need for rectifiers). Does the amount of traffic justfy electrification on this line? Surely there are higher priorities. It cannot even be justified as infill! Even west of Bathampton there would only be the Southampton Bristol services using it as the IET's don't run on DC. Electrifying Bathampton to Bristol on 3rd Rail would be extremely short-sighted and a waste of money! 

New electrification should be 25kV OLE.




Yes, Probably dead in the water, Better to get Bath Electrified, which should be next year,The Government will have more money by not giving it to the EU.  I Am lead to believe from information I have, is that Bath has part been started on and just needs finishing off by completing the Resignalling Then putting up the wires.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on December 02, 2018, 12:25:07 pm
Yes, Probably dead in the water, Better to get Bath Electrified, which should be next year,The Government will have more money by not giving it to the EU.

Quite apart from payments during the transition, and depending on the trade deal eventually negotiated, possibly some payments beyond. Then there is the cost of the several thousand extra civil servants (many already recruited) who will be required to do the things the EU currently does for us.

And there is then the fact that most of the money to the EU is revenue and electrification is capital investment. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on December 02, 2018, 12:30:26 pm
Yes, Probably dead in the water, Better to get Bath Electrified, which should be next year,The Government will have more money by not giving it to the EU.

Quite apart from payments during the transition, and depending on the trade deal eventually negotiated, possibly some payments beyond. Then there is the cost of the several thousand extra civil servants (many already recruited) who will be required to do the things the EU currently does for us.

And there is then the fact that most of the money to the EU is revenue and electrification is capital investment. 

Wonder what the final cost of this Brexit thing will be?. And who thought of having a referendum in the first place.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 02, 2018, 02:05:58 pm

My preference for DC extensions would be to use overhead wires. The kit for OLE was in fact developed for DC, with the contact wire gauges of 107mm2 and 120mm2 being used for 550V and 750V tramways/LR. I imagine that 3rd rail extension costs would have tracked with OLE, still giving OLE a marginal advantage. It would need either dedicated stock or a second LV pantograph but would prepare the way for seamless 25kV conversion.

Another link is the use of 33kV supplies to the 750V substations. It seems that the only real difference in equipment specifications between 25kV and 33kV systems is the transformer turns ratio.

I would like to see progress in my lifetime.

OTC



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: YouKnowNothing on December 02, 2018, 02:33:56 pm

I wonder what the cost savings for all the structures not requiring the additional height?


My preference for DC extensions would be to use overhead wires. The kit for OLE was in fact developed for DC, with the contact wire gauges of 107mm2 and 120mm2 being used for 550V and 750V tramways/LR. I imagine that 3rd rail extension costs would have tracked with OLE, still giving OLE a marginal advantage. It would need either dedicated stock or a second LV pantograph but would prepare the way for seamless 25kV conversion.

Another link is the use of 33kV supplies to the 750V substations. It seems that the only real difference in equipment specifications between 25kV and 33kV systems is the transformer turns ratio.

I would like to see progress in my lifetime.

OTC




Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on December 02, 2018, 02:40:49 pm

My preference for DC extensions would be to use overhead wires. The kit for OLE was in fact developed for DC, with the contact wire gauges of 107mm2 and 120mm2 being used for 550V and 750V tramways/LR. I imagine that 3rd rail extension costs would have tracked with OLE, still giving OLE a marginal advantage. It would need either dedicated stock or a second LV pantograph but would prepare the way for seamless 25kV conversion.

Another link is the use of 33kV supplies to the 750V substations. It seems that the only real difference in equipment specifications between 25kV and 33kV systems is the transformer turns ratio.

I would like to see progress in my lifetime.

OTC

You are still forgetting the additional substations the cost of rectifiers and the additional power losses due to the lower voltage (they reduce with the square of the voltage).  Also remember that most DC electric trains (and all modern ones) are dual voltage inside even if they don't have a pantograph. They could easily have a pantograph added and run on 25kV.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 02, 2018, 04:22:47 pm

You are still forgetting the additional substations the cost of rectifiers and the additional power losses due to the lower voltage (they reduce with the square of the voltage).  Also remember that most DC electric trains (and all modern ones) are dual voltage inside even if they don't have a pantograph. They could easily have a pantograph added and run on 25kV.

We are really only thinking of the gaps in Reading - Gatwick, Uckfield etc.

Anything outside of the old SR (and Merseyrail!) area would of course be 25kV, as you say. It would still need to be affordable, though.

I imagine that clearances would be much the same as it is contact more than flash-over that is the risk.

OTC

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 02, 2018, 07:12:01 pm
Happy to have third rail up from Southampton area to Wiltshire and taking it to Bristol; I doubt the good folks of Bath would complain about it being unsightly.

Apart from the safety considerations, the additional cost of DC power equipment (more substation and the need for rectifiers). Does the amount of traffic justfy electrification on this line? Surely there are higher priorities. It cannot even be justified as infill! Even west of Bathampton there would only be the Southampton Bristol services using it as the IET's don't run on DC. Electrifying Bathampton to Bristol on 3rd Rail would be extremely short-sighted and a waste of money! 

New electrification should be 25kV OLE.




Yes, Probably dead in the water, Better to get Bath Electrified, which should be next year,The Government will have more money by not giving it to the EU.  I Am lead to believe from information I have, is that Bath has part been started on and just needs finishing off by completing the Resignalling Then putting up the wires.


The problem at Bath Spa station and 25kV is one of electrical clearance due to the cant (the result of the curve) and the placement of the Pan over the coach doors, it is a problem that currently has no resolution suitable for ORR agreement, Sydney Gardens does have an acceptable solution.



My preference for DC extensions would be to use overhead wires. The kit for OLE was in fact developed for DC, with the contact wire gauges of 107mm2 and 120mm2 being used for 550V and 750V tramways/LR. I imagine that 3rd rail extension costs would have tracked with OLE, still giving OLE a marginal advantage. It would need either dedicated stock or a second LV pantograph but would prepare the way for seamless 25kV conversion.

Another link is the use of 33kV supplies to the 750V substations. It seems that the only real difference in equipment specifications between 25kV and 33kV systems is the transformer turns ratio.

I would like to see progress in my lifetime.

OTC



Pantographs for 25kV ac are not suitable for dc even at 1500V

It is not practical to use 33kV system to supply 25kV this is due to the large in balance caused by the 25kV being single phase, it cause negative phase sequence a large circulating current in the 132/33kV grid transformer


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eXPassenger on December 02, 2018, 09:35:54 pm
The problem at Bath Spa station and 25kV is one of electrical clearance due to the cant (the result of the curve) and the placement of the Pan over the coach doors, it is a problem that currently has no resolution suitable for ORR agreement, Sydney Gardens does have an acceptable solution.

So are you saying that there is a fundamental problem to electrifying Chippenham to Bristol TM?



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 02, 2018, 10:04:22 pm
The problem at Bath Spa station and 25kV is one of electrical clearance due to the cant (the result of the curve) and the placement of the Pan over the coach doors, it is a problem that currently has no resolution suitable for ORR agreement, Sydney Gardens does have an acceptable solution.

So are you saying that there is a fundamental problem to electrifying Chippenham to Bristol TM?

There is, yes.   There will be a solution to it, but as the electrification of that part of the route has been descoped by the DfT no one has the budget hence the time and resources to solve it


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eXPassenger on December 02, 2018, 10:45:46 pm
The problem at Bath Spa station and 25kV is one of electrical clearance due to the cant (the result of the curve) and the placement of the Pan over the coach doors, it is a problem that currently has no resolution suitable for ORR agreement, Sydney Gardens does have an acceptable solution.

So are you saying that there is a fundamental problem to electrifying Chippenham to Bristol TM?

There is, yes.   There will be a solution to it, but as the electrification of that part of the route has been descoped by the DfT no one has the budget hence the time and resources to solve it

Thank you.  I had not previously seen any reference to this.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on December 02, 2018, 10:59:55 pm
The problem at Bath Spa station and 25kV is one of electrical clearance due to the cant (the result of the curve) and the placement of the Pan over the coach doors, it is a problem that currently has no resolution suitable for ORR agreement, Sydney Gardens does have an acceptable solution.

So are you saying that there is a fundamental problem to electrifying Chippenham to Bristol TM?

There is, yes.   There will be a solution to it, but as the electrification of that part of the route has been descoped by the DfT no one has the budget hence the time and resources to solve it

I though that was why they built the platforms out?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Drkpm on December 05, 2018, 08:38:49 pm
Does anyone know why, none of the IEP,s that I have watch today (5th) 5 sets up and 6 sets down both 5, 2x5 and 9 car have either arrived or departed Swindon “ Pan Up “


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 05, 2018, 09:47:58 pm

I understand that Swindon- Didcot OLE is OOU this week for attention.

It's very early days.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on December 05, 2018, 10:13:14 pm

I understand that Swindon- Didcot OLE is OOU this week for attention.

It's very early days.

OTC

Is it ‘attention’ or energising & testing Cocklebury sidings?

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 05, 2018, 11:09:57 pm

We are really only thinking of the gaps in Reading - Gatwick, Uckfield etc.

Anything outside of the old SR (and Merseyrail!) area would of course be 25kV, as you say. It would still need to be affordable, though.

I imagine that clearances would be much the same as it is contact more than flash-over that is the risk.

OTC

I recall a senior manager of NR, being interviewed after the third rail had iced over and failed, saying that if we were starting from scratch, we wouldn't use third rail anywhere. That should inform the strategy for the future.

Yes, Probably dead in the water, Better to get Bath Electrified, which should be next year,The Government will have more money by not giving it to the EU.  I Am lead to believe from information I have, is that Bath has part been started on and just needs finishing off by completing the Resignalling Then putting up the wires.

They say that a pessimist is an optimist with experience. I am normally glass half full, but I don't recall anything about electrification being printed on the side of that red bus. I will bet you a peak return to Paddington against a single from Lawrence Hill to Stapleton Road that the NHS won't see anything like the £350 million per week that was offered - more like £35, if that. I might be wrong, but then I am old enough to have voted in the referendum in 1975. Sadly for me, my economic migrant forebears washed up from Ireland too long ago for me to be able to get an Irish passport.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 06, 2018, 12:02:34 am

Is it ‘attention’ or energising & testing Cocklebury sidings?

Paul

So it would seem. I've seen a switch-on time of 0700, next Sunday, 9th.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 07, 2018, 04:49:55 pm

UK Rail Forums report a 387 working from Reading to Newbury and back (5Z36), last night/early hours.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on December 07, 2018, 06:08:04 pm
UK Rail Forums report a 387 working from Reading to Newbury and back (5Z36), last night/early hours.

It must be true, it’s on YouTube (after about 90 secs):  https://youtu.be/ylMwCQfW2wY

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on December 14, 2018, 01:58:41 pm
I was at Paddington at about 8am on Wednesday morning and there seemed something different about it.  After I had walked up the platform a bit I realised what it was - No diesel fumes!  There was not a diesel train in the place. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on December 14, 2018, 03:36:11 pm
That’s good. Now we’ll be able to sniff the fresh air of the Burger King exhaust system so much better...

 ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 14, 2018, 05:12:46 pm

...and the scented aromas of the SLE/Ps' direct track discharges.

Good news is that the Preston - Manchester wiring works. See:

https://twitter.com/Auriga_ZA/status/1073048856328318976

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 15, 2018, 01:30:15 am
Nice! I might get to use that next July.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 15, 2018, 08:46:26 am
I was at Paddington at about 8am on Wednesday morning and there seemed something different about it.  After I had walked up the platform a bit I realised what it was - No diesel fumes!  There was not a diesel train in the place. 


The last 2 years has seen a massive change to the traction types in Paddington possible the biggest change in half a century.

The 21st century class 800 do not jar with the old Victorian station at all, it has absorbed the change very well.

Having worked in Paddington station in the 1970/80's posibly at its peak diesel opperating era I find the current 2018 evironment much nicer, its cleaner and quiter although there was a certain industrial vibe in the 70/80's but then there was GPO, parcels, news paper traffic on top of the pasanger traffic then now the station is about moving people but thats just how the world has moved on.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on December 15, 2018, 08:42:53 pm
For those who know far more than I do with regards to this subject
I wondered if this would be of interest
http://www.ocs4rail.com/download/178/

I should add that's a bit of a large file .


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on December 15, 2018, 10:20:55 pm
For those who know far more than I do with regards to this subject
I wondered if this would be of interest
http://www.ocs4rail.com/download/178/

I should add that's a bit of a large file .

It's* not new - it's been referred to and linked to here before - but it is a new version (issue 5 vs 4) It now loads from a new source, which is where the old link (at railwaysarchive/OLE) now transfers. I can't tell you what's changed, but he promises "additional sections and diagrams, plus photo refresh".

* I should have said "it" is Garry Keenor's "Overhead Line Electrification for Railways".


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on December 16, 2018, 01:23:19 pm
When is the BPW power being switched on?. I believed it was to be xmas.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on December 16, 2018, 01:27:17 pm
That’s good. Now we’ll be able to sniff the fresh air of the Burger King exhaust system so much better...

 ;D

Why?. does it stink.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Drkpm on December 18, 2018, 01:16:54 pm
Once again IB25 Pad / Swi left Swindon “Pan up “  slowing to a near stop before recovering the situation by dropping the pan and starting the Diesel engines. Could as Grahame sujested last time been “ testing/ training or intentionally done “ or another case of these so called professional drivers being “ a sleep at the wheel “


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 18, 2018, 02:18:37 pm

I think that the approved stage of the Didcot-Swindon wiring actually ends not in the station but at Rushey Platt, a Western suburb of Swindon. Drivers may have the option of changing over there.

Just a thought.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 18, 2018, 03:05:59 pm
It sounds like Drkpm just has a disliking of drivers for some reason.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 18, 2018, 06:20:33 pm
Once again IB25 Pad / Swi left Swindon “Pan up “  slowing to a near stop before recovering the situation by dropping the pan and starting the Diesel engines. Could as Grahame sujested last time been “ testing/ training or intentionally done “ or another case of these so called professional drivers being “ a sleep at the wheel “

Welcome to the Coffee Shop, Drkpm!

It sounds like Drkpm just has a disliking of drivers for some reason.

I'm sure time on the Coffee Shop will give him an insight into the truth of the matter.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Drkpm on December 18, 2018, 06:30:24 pm
Tony, What is the truth of the matter, clearly the signage at the western end of all the platforms says “ no electric trains passed this point “ so why are drivers purposely ignoring it ?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on December 18, 2018, 07:09:29 pm
Tony, What is the truth of the matter, clearly the signage at the western end of all the platforms says “ no electric trains passed this point “ so why are drivers purposely ignoring it ?

May I suggest there's probably very good reason to start from Swindon under electric power and switch on the move as the switched on section ends.  There is something of parallel situation of trains running off the end of overhead wires - at Blackfriars - and to my knowledge only one instance of that ring wrong, so it seems unlikely that it keeps going wrong at Swindon - especially with all the modern recording gubbins on trains these days that will report back to HQ ...

It says "no electric trains" and not "no bi-mode trains under electric power".  Perhaps it's needed there to ensure that no-one drives a 387 into a section where it would get stuck ...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 18, 2018, 07:12:04 pm
Tony, What is the truth of the matter, clearly the signage at the western end of all the platforms says “ no electric trains passed this point “ so why are drivers purposely ignoring it ?

I am as yet unfamiliar with the new layout, but a sign like that sounds rather prescriptive. However, the railway is nothing if not complicated, and that sign may be simply for any pure electric trains, rather than the hybrids, as they would not be able to get back without assistance if the electricity ended after the next set of points. An expert will no doubt tell us the proper version.

Edit: As grahame said as I was typing.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 18, 2018, 07:18:36 pm
I don’t expect anyone has been purposely ignoring it, but drivers are supposed to change power mode in the station AIUI.

Probably one or two mistakes have been made, with human error the likely cause, but with significant mitigating factors including: 1) No reminder system other than lineside signage and whatever personal system they use, 2) Many drivers will have been driving IETs west from Swindon for over a year without having to remember such actions, 3) Many drivers will have been driving HSTs west from Swindon for many years (often decades) without having to remember to take such actions.

It would appear in both cases (if they happened as reported - I haven’t seen anything official) that no major harm was done.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Drkpm on December 18, 2018, 07:30:59 pm
I will says only one more thing and leave it that.......I was a working medical doctor, if I had forgot to do procedure because of custom and practice, I would not only have be disaplined and a patient would/could have suffered


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bob_Blakey on December 18, 2018, 07:46:00 pm
...clearly the signage at the western end of all the platforms says “ no electric trains passed this point “...

How does the author of the signs know this? Have they taken up permanent residence at the station?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 18, 2018, 07:50:37 pm
I will says only one more thing and leave it that.......I was a working medical doctor, if I had forgot to do procedure because of custom and practice, I would not only have be disaplined and a patient would/could have suffered

I’m glad you never made any mistakes.  Though of course we know that plenty of mistakes in the medical field are made.  Rest assured that any breaches of driver working practices and procedures are investigated and where appropriate disciplinary action is taken.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Drkpm on December 18, 2018, 07:54:42 pm
Thank you”IndustryInsider” at last a realistic answer/reason, and not excuses based on so hypothetical technology that seams to be a figment of some of the members imagination........I will say on more thing and then call it a day on this particular subject......I was a practicing medical doctor and if I had forgot to undertake a procedure be it new or established, I would have rightly be dicaplined.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 18, 2018, 08:31:53 pm
Can I just ask how you know that it definitely left Swindon initially on electric power before switching to diesel?  Did you observe it from the station or from on the train?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Drkpm on December 18, 2018, 09:05:31 pm
Watch  the “ Pan drop “ and then the diesels started, was on the car park road which runs parallel to the station, the driving coach and the second coach had left the paltform before the diesels start, I was not the only one to witness it.......as I said before the subject as far as I am concerned is closed....drkpm


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 18, 2018, 09:11:11 pm
Ok, thanks for clarifying.  Had it been observed from on the train there might have been a different (and less serious) explanation with the train appearing to be on electric, but that’s obviously not the case.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: MVR S&T on December 18, 2018, 09:22:23 pm
The pantograph drop signs are beyond the platforms by around 2 coaches, and its an automated system, so all seems correct.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Celestial on December 18, 2018, 09:44:42 pm
I find it somewhat ironic that the poster accusing drivers of being unprofessional (which has since been disproved, and I guess which many found offensive), has littered their posts with some fairly awful spelling mistakes, despite being a well educated doctor.

As a newbie I'm not sure what the etiquette is, but it also seems poor form to make such an accusation, and then suggest that the discussion be closed when others seek to challenge that view?

I wouldn't like to be a driver.  It must demand a lot of skill, knowledge and concentration all the time, and I'm sure they all act very professionally. But everyone is human, and so slips will always happen, even if it seems in this case, the original accusation was wrong anyway. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 18, 2018, 09:58:25 pm
The pantograph drop signs are beyond the platforms by around 2 coaches, and its an automated system, so all seems correct.

The instruction for drivers working passenger trains is to change to diesel mode when stationary and not wait until a few seconds after departure (as obviously the risk of distraction is greater when on the move), so it's not all correct as such, but again not a massive issue provided it is changed very shortly after departure.  Test trains are permitted to operate with their pan up.

This all changes anyway on 30th December when electric passenger running through to Bristol Parkway commences.

There will be the following changes at Swindon then:

1) Trains to/from Bristol Parkway can stay in electric mode between Causeway and Bristol Parkway.
2) Trains to/from Chippenham or Kemble will need to change mode when stopped at Swindon station, unless not stopping at Swindon in which case:
2a) Up direction trains continue on diesel and perform a change to electric mode (at Didcot Parkway, if stopping there, or Moreton Cutting if not) unless their speed drops to less than 20mph when they can change on the move.
2b) Down direction trains must change back to diesel  at either SW1161 or SW1163 signals.

At Bristol Parkway:
1) Down direction trains change to diesel where there will be signage just before the station, unless they are headed to Stoke Gifford in which case they can stay on electric mode
2) Up direction trains stopping at Bristol Parkway must change to electric mode whilst at the station.
3) Up direction trains not stopping at Bristol Parkway must change to electric mode in a special zone east of Parkway station.

Perhaps that little lot might explain why the odd mistake is made?  ???


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on December 18, 2018, 10:20:07 pm
I find it somewhat ironic that the poster accusing drivers of being unprofessional (which has since been disproved, and I guess which many found offensive), has littered their posts with some fairly awful spelling mistakes, despite being a well educated doctor.

As a newbie I'm not sure what the etiquette is, but it also seems poor form to make such an accusation, and then suggest that the discussion be closed when others seek to challenge that view?

I wouldn't like to be a driver.  It must demand a lot of skill, knowledge and concentration all the time, and I'm sure they all act very professionally. But everyone is human, and so slips will always happen, even if it seems in this case, the original accusation was wrong anyway. 

The etiquette is buried (deep, deep, deep) in the introduction for newcomers (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=1761.msg12165#msg12165) thread ... not a necessary read, but somewhere the moderator / admin team can point people who ask.

This is a forum with some amazing people from so many different walks of life and so many different views and - provided they don't move to personal attacks or be otherwise a problem - that's AOK, as is people doing their best with their presentation of data.  Not an example from here ... but I recall on another forum (where I helped moderate) being put out by posts that were all in lower case and unpunctuated; turns out our poster had such disabilities that even that as he posted was a struggle for every single letter.

It has also become a community where the caring and respect for people transcends the mere posts. We ... utterly .. welcome newcomers.  Know that at times they may be a little concerned at the views, approaches of others - but  strength comes from diversity of people and views and styles.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 19, 2018, 12:06:41 am
Perhaps that little lot might explain why the odd mistake is made?  ???

II, many thanks once again for a comprehensive explanation of what is really going on.

I have learned much from the Coffee Shop, especially from posts by the engineers, drivers, and other professionals, all masters of their disciplines, who put a context to what I have seen. One example from my own period of pre-enlightenment: I used to think that working on the railway tracks must be the easiest job in the world, because whenever I have passed any "road works", nobody has been working. There is just a band of men in orange, leaning on shovels. Many years later, someone pointed out to me that they have to stop and step back to let my train pass. D'uh!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 19, 2018, 08:06:31 am
Thank you”IndustryInsider” at last a realistic answer/reason, and not excuses based on so hypothetical technology that seams to be a figment of some of the members imagination........I will say on more thing and then call it a day on this particular subject......I was a practicing medical doctor and if I had forgot to undertake a procedure be it new or established, I would have rightly be dicaplined.

Perhaps DrKpm should realise that the railways were the first industry to have safety systems to eliminate human error as far as reasonably practical to prevent death and serious injury.   


I am sure the incident of the Pan not lowering at the correct time, be it human or technical, did not out human life at risk ………………………. just the irritation of inconvenience; Railway Professionals are held to account, in this case the drive might have been med screened, been suspended pending investigation (I don't know if that happened in this incident)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 19, 2018, 09:22:45 am
It is, I suppose, possible that the driver forgot for a moment, ran off the end of the wires, and thought "Whoops, better start the diesels and put the pan down!" Outcome - a momentary loss of acceleration, and maybe a few seconds added to the journey time to Parkway. It is equally possibly that he was following a procedure that made it look a bit odd, or that the event didn't happen at all, just appeared to for some reason. Whichever way, there was never any danger to any person, nor to the success of the journey. I, however, once mistakenly switched the fuel supply of a light aircraft off in flight, when I meant to change tanks, which is another matter...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on December 19, 2018, 10:40:18 am
One of the things that the Railway has strived for over the years and continues to find difficult to achieve in a culture of litigation is to investigate the fault and try and prevent it happening again rather than seek to prosecute. These two things are often incompatible. The equivalent to prosecution in employment is disciplinary process. There is a time and a place for this, but so often in the long history of railway accidents it was the system that was at fault not the individual, people should not be penalise if the system makes it unnecessarily hard for them to do their job.  


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on December 19, 2018, 11:19:31 am
One of the things that the Railway has strived for over the years and continues to find difficult to achieve in a culture of litigation is to investigate the fault and try and prevent it happening again rather than seek to prosecute.   

The Railway is not alone in this mindset, the NHS is perhaps the biggest "culprit" for this. Many medical "mistakes" would be accepted if an immediate admission of liability (not guilt !) and a heartfelt apology were forthcoming. The fear of litigation (with ambulance chasers now advertising in hospital waiting rooms !!) causes an immediate closing of ranks in the NHS medical/management tiers. The root cause of the problem is ignored until it happens again, and again, and................

Practically every developed country has air accident investigation organisations who investigate civil aviation accidents down to the lowest possible level. Many of these accidents appear initially to be caused by pilot error/mistakes but are investigated to a much deeper level to find out why the pilot did what he did. The end results are very often changes to documentation, procedures and training. It is very rare for 100% of the blame to heaped upon the flight deck crew.

If they can do this with aeroplanes - why can't they do it on the railways ??


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 19, 2018, 11:35:35 am
One of the things that the Railway has strived for over the years and continues to find difficult to achieve in a culture of litigation is to investigate the fault and try and prevent it happening again rather than seek to prosecute. These two things are often incompatible. The equivalent to prosecution in employment is disciplinary process. There is a time and a place for this, but so often in the long history of railway accidents it was the system that was at fault not the individual, people should not be penalise if the system makes it unnecessarily hard for them to do their job.  

As I learned many years ago, much of the law of negligence, personal injury and duty of care arose from railway accidents at the dawn of the age.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on December 21, 2018, 07:15:10 pm

Private Eye's "Signal Failures" column has a piece about contracting out electrification, for Christmas reading.

Nadolig llawen,

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightonedee on December 21, 2018, 09:50:34 pm

Quote
Private Eye's "Signal Failures" column has a piece about contracting out electrification, for Christmas reading.

Interesting - but it is not clear the extent to which Atkins are responsible in this role for what appears to be poor advance planning of the project which could be the root of many of the problems.

I also noted reference to "lavishing money on diesel trains" - Ian Hislop clearly has not been inside a Turbo lately!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on December 21, 2018, 10:24:53 pm

Private Eye's "Signal Failures" column has a piece about contracting out electrification, for Christmas reading.

Nadolig llawen,

OTC
And a Verry Happy Christmas to you OTC.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on December 22, 2018, 08:22:26 am

If they can do this with aeroplanes - why can't they do it on the railways ??

Indeed they do its called RAIB (Rail Accident Investigation Branch) operates in the same manor and has the same powers as AAIB; the railways also has ORR which incorporates the powers of the former HMIR and for railway matters the HSE also there is BTP.  The RSSB will look at the output of all of these and amend "The Rule Book" (The railway Rule Book predates many other industry SOP (Standard Operating Instructions) by many many decades.

Also not every incident is investigated by AAIB, a breach or operating rules would normally be investigated by the airline, airport etc and a report sent to the CAA detailing what happened, actions taken and lessons learnt which is exactly how the railways operate except our reports are made available to the ORR.  Its worth noting that heritage railways are also accountable to the ORR and RAIB.

There is not the same level of scrutiny for highways, perhaps if there was we would have less deaths, serious injury and delays to journeys caused by road traffic accidents than the UK currently has


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Gordon the Blue Engine on December 22, 2018, 10:03:37 am
The long-established railway practice of “open” investigations into railway accidents took a bit of a knock after the Purley accident in 1989 when the Driver of a train which did a SPAD was convicted of manslaughter.  This was close after Clapham, so railway safety was a sensitive issue in the public eye.

The Court proceedings went ahead before the Railway investigation.  When this went ahead it emerged that the signal involved was "high risk" and had been involved in several previous SPADs, but that BR had taken no effective action to address this.  The Driver’s conviction was subsequently overturned because of this new information to the Court. 

This demonstrates the point made by others that a simple human error by front line staff may have deeper systemic causes.  The current complicated instructions for diesel/electric changeover cited by Industry Insider demonstrates this.

Also, since Purley, railway staff may think twice before being frank and honest about what they did before or during a safety incident, although with more data and voice recording etc nowadays there may be less scope for holding back.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: REVUpminster on December 28, 2018, 04:04:41 pm
 On 2 January electric train services will run between Newbury and London Paddington for the first time.

 The upgrade will enable GWR to run brand new trains with more seats.

tweeted today at 10am


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on December 28, 2018, 04:43:45 pm

If they can do this with aeroplanes - why can't they do it on the railways ??

Indeed they do its called RAIB (Rail Accident Investigation Branch) operates in the same manor and has the same powers as AAIB...

...not every incident is investigated by AAIB, a breach or operating rules would normally be investigated by the airline, airport etc and a report sent to the CAA detailing what happened, actions taken and lessons learnt which is exactly how the railways operate except our reports are made available to the ORR. 

There uis a handy guide on the GOV.UK (https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/476137/130620_RAIBN3_Quick_Guide_to_Notification_v3.pdf) website. laying out the three categories of incidents on railways that should be reported to the RAIB. The most serious in Schedule 1, involving death, serious injury, derailment, expense over €2,000,000 etc, or the possibility of the same,  have to be reported immediately by telephone.

There isn't a similar shirt-pocket guide to air accident reporting, which is covered by the Civil Aviation (Investigation of Air Accidents and Incidents) Regulations 1996 (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/1996/2798/made), although knowledge of what is mandatory and what is advisable is part of the curriculum for pilot training at every level, with much the same principles applying to the student in a single piston engined 2-seater as to the pilot in command of an internationally operated A380. The cases to be reported are broadly similar to those in railway accidents, except that the rules also apply to UK registered aircraft anywhere in the world, and the report should be made by the fastest means available in every case.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on December 31, 2018, 09:49:41 am
387's in passenger service at Newbury this morning, a few days ahead of the advertised date  :)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on December 31, 2018, 10:18:49 am
Yes.  From reading elsewhere, the wires between Reading and Newbury and Swindon and Bristol Parkway were approved for use yesterday (30 December 2018).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bradshaw on December 31, 2018, 11:01:09 am
Network Rail have Tweeted that the first electric train from Parkway arrived 7 early at Swindon

https://twitter.com/networkrailwest/status/1079654361393958912?s=21


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on December 31, 2018, 11:09:17 am
Considering all the trains from Bristol Parkway are having a 10 - 12 minute wait at Swindon, I'm not surprised it arrived early!

For the record I don't see any services that arrived 7 minutes ahead of expected arrival time



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TaplowGreen on December 31, 2018, 11:29:35 am
387's in passenger service at Newbury this morning, a few days ahead of the advertised date  :)

Does this mean shortforms elsewhere, or do GWR have sufficient stock to maintain full 8 car services on LTV?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on December 31, 2018, 02:33:53 pm
387's in passenger service at Newbury this morning, a few days ahead of the advertised date  :)

Does this mean shortforms elsewhere, or do GWR have sufficient stock to maintain full 8 car services on LTV?

With wiring to Oxford deferred indefinitely and IETs running the Oxford terminating fasts (was originally meant to be 387s), I doubt if GWR are short of units. Reported elsewhere that GWR have 45 387s for 40 diagrams, though I don't know if that includes the Reading-Newbury shuttles (2 units??).

I thought that they were supposed to be running some 12 car 'commuter-buster' peak services in the new year timetable - if those appear I would guess that they're unlikely to need to shortform 8 car peak services.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on December 31, 2018, 03:44:51 pm
Quote
Reading-Newbury shuttles (2 units??).

I think it's 3 units needed to run the above, as the timetabled time is around 30-31 mins so 2 units doesn't quite work. From what I have observed, at least 2 of the diagrams are on 387's today.

Just looking at RTT for a few of today's runs suggests that the 387's are about a minute quicker than the current timetable requires between stops like Midgham-Thatcham and Theale-Aldermaston.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on December 31, 2018, 03:46:24 pm
Reading to Newbury is only hourly, so 2 units


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adelante_CCT on December 31, 2018, 03:51:45 pm
Quote
I thought that they were supposed to be running some 12 car 'commuter-buster' peak services in the new year timetable

This 'new' timetable won't be coming in to effect yet, and I doubt the Reading/Didcot busters would start until crossrail takes over most of the Reading/Maidenhead - Paddingtons


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on December 31, 2018, 03:54:39 pm
Quote
Reading to Newbury is only hourly, so 2 units

Doh, yes, forgetting that the Bedwyn's provide the rest of the 2tph frequency between Reading and Newbury (Mon-Sat). Just need the IET's on those now, ideally before May (which was the last revised date I heard) ;)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on December 31, 2018, 04:03:27 pm
Just looking at RTT for a few of today's runs suggests that the 387's are about a minute quicker than the current timetable requires between stops like Midgham-Thatcham and Theale-Aldermaston.

Drivers of 387s on the B&H have been given specific instructions to take it easy until the timetable is altered to try to avoid excessive TPWS activations/interventions and station overruns.  So potential performance will probably be even better than what is currently being achieved.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on January 02, 2019, 08:59:00 pm
On BBC "Points West" tonight they ran a story about electric trains now being able to run from London to Bristol (well, Parkway anyway - near enough I suppose !). Then they had a Party Pooper on who said it was five years late. Somebody please remind me how long it took Brunel to build the actual railway in the first place ...................................


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on January 02, 2019, 09:35:15 pm
Five years late?  More like two years late isn’t it?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on January 02, 2019, 10:25:59 pm
On BBC "Points West" tonight they ran a story about electric trains now being able to run from London to Bristol (well, Parkway anyway - near enough I suppose !). Then they had a Party Pooper on who said it was five years late. Somebody please remind me how long it took Brunel to build the actual railway in the first place ...................................

Five and a half years for a whole new railway from London to Bristol following the act of Parliament in 1835. Built with Georgian 'technology'.

You'd think that stringing up knitting with 21st century technology could be a little more quickly expedited.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on January 03, 2019, 08:28:09 am
You'd think that stringing up knitting with 21st century technology could be a little more quickly expedited.

One would think so - but Brunel, of course, didn't have the marvels of 21st Century "management" to help him along ..........................


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on January 03, 2019, 12:01:21 pm
Five years late?  More like two years late isn’t it?
When it was announced, wasnt it completely out of the blue, and no advance planning or design work whatsoever had started because ‘the railway’ was expecting the MML to be wired? 

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 03, 2019, 12:09:10 pm
Five years late?  More like two years late isn’t it?

Always thought it was about right time 2018 to complete to BPW And 2020 through to Swansea. This I was told back in 2010.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 03, 2019, 12:44:00 pm
You'd think that stringing up knitting with 21st century technology could be a little more quickly expedited.

One would think so - but Brunel, of course, didn't have the marvels of 21st Century "management" to help him along ..........................

But he did have the navvies to help build the line, many hundreds of them, earning a penny a week or so.


Don't know if this is correct, but found out somewhere that it cost a million pounds to build, What would the bill be now, if NR relayed all the points and tracks, from Paddington to Bristol today, Lord knows.

With the amount of money spent on this Brexit thing, they could probably have afforded to have done just that, Gosh it would be lovely and smooth.


Just think, more blockades.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on January 03, 2019, 01:47:55 pm
A million quid in 1830 is equivalent to around £110 million now, according to the Bank of England (https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/monetary-policy/inflation/inflation-calculator). Which might get you Filton Bank without the land cost today.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on January 03, 2019, 03:16:19 pm
In among the comments in response to NR's tweet about wires going live at Porkway, someone pointed out that this isn't the biggest change to the GWR since Brunel's day - that would be the change to narrow gauge in 1892...

The GWR's re-gauging seems quite impressive, until you learn that some 14,500km of railways in the former Confederate States of the USA were converted from 1524mm to 1448mm (Pennysylvania RR gauge, a bit wider than Stevenson's coal cart gauge but near enough) over a period of two days between 31 May 1886 and 1st June 1886.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on January 03, 2019, 03:41:40 pm

https://youtu.be/N8Bf53r9ufk

20s intro so be patient.

Notice the 5+5 IEP with front and rear pans up.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on January 03, 2019, 04:00:33 pm
There's speculation elsewhere that the electric string might be slightly out-of-spec (too high) on that crossing which led to the 387 issue that happened yesterday. The pans do look very extended in that video.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on January 03, 2019, 04:08:55 pm
I was at Thatcham Station a bit earlier, while a couple of 387's came and went.

An orange-suited gent from NR was on the platfrom and paying very close attention to the pan alignment with the wires as those trains arrived and departed.

Chat elsewhere is that the problems yesterday occured in the "Midgham and Thatcham areas", where there a 3 crossings in total (including Colthrop in the YT clip, which is between the other 2).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on January 03, 2019, 04:35:24 pm
In among the comments in response to NR's tweet about wires going live at Porkway, someone pointed out that this isn't the biggest change to the GWR since Brunel's day - that would be the change to narrow gauge in 1892...


They did that over a weekend didn't they ?   ;) ;)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on January 03, 2019, 04:47:19 pm
In among the comments in response to NR's tweet about wires going live at Porkway, someone pointed out that this isn't the biggest change to the GWR since Brunel's day - that would be the change to narrow gauge in 1892...

The GWR's re-gauging seems quite impressive, until you learn that some 14,500km of railways in the former Confederate States of the USA were converted from 1524mm to 1448mm (Pennysylvania RR gauge, a bit wider than Stevenson's coal cart gauge but near enough) over a period of two days between 31 May 1886 and 1st June 1886.
Perhaps not comparing like with like though. Reference was made earlier to the 'advances' of management since Brunel's day; presumably both Brunel's and the Confederate re-gauging time is just labour time, not including any planning time. In addition, there was presumably an abundant labour force in the former Confederate States that barely needed to be paid at all.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on January 03, 2019, 06:50:29 pm
On BBC "Points West" tonight they ran a story about electric trains now being able to run from London to Bristol (well, Parkway anyway - near enough I suppose !). Then they had a Party Pooper on who said it was five years late. Somebody please remind me how long it took Brunel to build the actual railway in the first place ...................................

Five and a half years for a whole new railway from London to Bristol following the act of Parliament in 1835. Built with Georgian 'technology'.

You'd think that stringing up knitting with 21st century technology could be a little more quickly expedited.

Of course far easier to build a railway from scratch where you don't have to provide a train service to passengers, perhaps NR should have shut the GWML down for 3 years done all the major civils, re-signalled, electrified, new track etc ………………. I'm sure the travelling public would not have minded in the least


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Clan Line on January 03, 2019, 10:10:52 pm
On BBC "Points West" tonight they ran a story about electric trains now being able to run from London to Bristol (well, Parkway anyway - near enough I suppose !). Then they had a Party Pooper on who said it was five years late. Somebody please remind me how long it took Brunel to build the actual railway in the first place ...................................

Five and a half years for a whole new railway from London to Bristol following the act of Parliament in 1835. Built with Georgian 'technology'.

You'd think that stringing up knitting with 21st century technology could be a little more quickly expedited.

Of course far easier to build a railway from scratch where you don't have to provide a train service to passengers, perhaps NR should have shut the GWML down for 3 years done all the major civils, re-signalled, electrified, new track etc ……………….

But how late would they still have been ???   Most of the delays appear not to have been caused by having to keep a service running whilst carrying up the upgrade, but by good old fashioned incompetence by all involved.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on January 03, 2019, 10:28:02 pm
Of course far easier to build a railway from scratch where you don't have to provide a train service to passengers, perhaps NR should have shut the GWML down for 3 years done all the major civils, re-signalled, electrified, new track etc ……………….

But how late would they still have been ???   Most of the delays appear not to have been caused by having to keep a service running whilst carrying up the upgrade, but by good old fashioned incompetence by all involved.

You talk as if competence was unrelated to the difficulty of the task.

Not only did Brunel not have to contend with keeping traffic running, he did not have to alter existing bridges or worry about clearances for 50kV power lines, and even if he had none of them would have been listed. He did not have much to do much about signalling. He did not risk digging through unmarked cables - because there weren't any.  He certainly did not have to immunise the signalling against interference from electric traction.  Also in his time it was quite acceptable for a number of his workers to die in accidents during the work.

Not only that but IIRC he went well over budget. 

In short Brunel was highly competent for his task in his time, I am not sure anyone could judge what he would have made of the present task. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on January 03, 2019, 10:59:13 pm
But how late would they still have been ???   Most of the delays appear not to have been caused by having to keep a service running whilst carrying up the upgrade, but by good old fashioned incompetence by all involved.

That could be the case, but first narrow down who has been incompetent here. If I have read things rightly, one problem with the work has been not knowing the true nature of what was on the railway. Over the years that have passed since the job should have been done - about 3 decades by my reckoning - a lot has happened to the railway, with tracks replaced, removed, remodelled and slewed, cables for signalling, telephones, internet and other things laid and buried alongside them, and less than comprehensive records kept of what was where. Someone must have known that there was a strong likelihood of what Donald Rumsfeld called "known unknowns" lurking, ready to show themselves only when work commences?

Which begs another question. Had someone gone to DfT and said "We've done the best job of surveying the route that we can without digging holes every few metres, but we reckon there will be big problems when we start the actual work, that could seriously inflate the cost", what would the response be? Probably to put the whole thing on hold yet again until at least the next election.  Better maybe to keep schtum in the hope that it won't be as bad as you expect, send lots of drawings of bridges and gantries, then filter the bad news slowly, after the work has gained too much momentum to stop easily. The intercity routes will all be electrified one day, and the longer it is stopped, started, stopped, started, the harder and more expensive the work will end up.

If it did happen this way, I hope whoever is responsible for putting a blind eye to the telescope gets a medal.

Edit: And I agree with ellendunne's view, posted while I was typing / brewing tea / etc.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 04, 2019, 10:23:16 am
Trouble with the Western area is it was BR WR policy (1950-1970) to bury S&T cables, not have them in troughs like all other regions..... ::)  However, fairly good records of what was where were kept.  Trouble was at privatisation Railtrack wasn't interested in saving any of it, and allowed it to be kept by the privatised infrastructure companies that it employed.  When these changed hands it wasn't RT policy to take back control of the records so a lot of them 'went in the bin'..... :P

Edit to add: How do I know that?  Well I have a large number of them here in my garage at home......


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on January 04, 2019, 10:44:25 am
Thanks, S&T, that rather confirms how I read the situation, although it seems I was 30 years out as to when it all started to go less than perfect. So it is not so much incompetence by those working to string the wires up as historic failures in record keeping. I hope that, with the aid of computers, the most detailed of records have been made of works done since the electrification work began. Maybe Filton Bank should have each individual piece of ballast numbered and logged by GPS co-ordinates - probably not, but as the railway there has been virtually rebuilt, I would expect that the course of every cable beside it has been charted.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: CyclingSid on January 04, 2019, 10:48:51 am
Thames Water probably have a similar problem. There was a massive sale of their paper record maps, presumably before they had digitised them all. So it is not unusual for them to claim they don't know where the pipes are.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 04, 2019, 11:55:39 am
Trouble with the Western area is it was BR WR policy (1950-1970) to bury S&T cables, not have them in troughs like all other regions..... ::)  However, fairly good records of what was where were kept.  Trouble was at privatisation Railtrack wasn't interested in saving any of it, and allowed it to be kept by the privatised infrastructure companies that it employed.  When these changed hands it wasn't RT policy to take back control of the records so a lot of them 'went in the bin'..... :P

Edit to add: How do I know that?  Well I have a large number of them here in my garage at home......

However in the Gloucester area, I noticed that when Gloucester panel was installed in 1968-9 there are quite a lot of concrete troughthing along side the tracks and also leading to the cabinets, with some cables coming out of the ballast in places. Yet when they did the filton bank and reading, seemed to put through plastic ducting, I suppose this will change now as the government are trying to rid of plastic.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on January 04, 2019, 12:46:00 pm
Also clear that Network Rail didn't have accurate knowledge of the condition of a lot of its assets, and didn't take this into account. For example bridges that were thought capable of being raised actually needing more or less a total rebuild.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Gordon the Blue Engine on January 04, 2019, 01:04:20 pm
Trouble with the Western area is it was BR WR policy (1950-1970) to bury S&T cables, not have them in troughs like all other regions..... ::)  However, fairly good records of what was where were kept.  Trouble was at privatisation Railtrack wasn't interested in saving any of it, and allowed it to be kept by the privatised infrastructure companies that it employed.  When these changed hands it wasn't RT policy to take back control of the records so a lot of them 'went in the bin'..... :P

Edit to add: How do I know that?  Well I have a large number of them here in my garage at home......

I would take slight issue with this.  In 1995-96 I was working for Railtrack at Swindon, helping get things ready for privatisation.  We had to compile spreadsheets detailing the condition of every bridge, tunnel, culvert, lineside fence by mileage etc so the Prospectus could give an accurate description of the assets. This was difficult as even then, before privatisation, records were sketchy and incomplete. Tom Winsor (then the Rail Regulator) tried very hard to get Railtrack to get on top of its asset management after privatisation, but I don’t think he was very successful.

The problem with records probably arose when RT was formed as a division of BR in 1993, and not on privatisation in 1996   


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on January 04, 2019, 02:00:33 pm
I would hope that any records made now are kept in both digital and paper form. Both are vulnerable to obsolescence but in different ways: digital through incompatibility of future systems, paper to fire, water, moths etc.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightf48544 on January 04, 2019, 03:51:01 pm
I would hope that any records made now are kept in both digital and paper form. Both are vulnerable to obsolescence but in different ways: digital through incompatibility of future systems, paper to fire, water, moths etc.

I agree regarding digital. I remember way back in the 70's that IBM (I think) just managed to saved the last couple of a particular tape drive for NASA to read the vast amount of data they were receiving from their satellites.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on January 04, 2019, 06:30:09 pm
Trouble with the Western area is it was BR WR policy (1950-1970) to bury S&T cables, not have them in troughs like all other regions..... ::)  However, fairly good records of what was where were kept.  Trouble was at privatisation Railtrack wasn't interested in saving any of it, and allowed it to be kept by the privatised infrastructure companies that it employed.  When these changed hands it wasn't RT policy to take back control of the records so a lot of them 'went in the bin'..... :P

Edit to add: How do I know that?  Well I have a large number of them here in my garage at home......


This was the case for M&EE, what we now call electrification and plant, RT view it was the responsibility of their contractors to maintain records only problem was RT did not fund bits of BR (BRB and Regional design and drawing offices etc) to look after the records held so the new owners these bits who after all being are profit making and not a charity just dumped the records because it was costing them money and not earning …………………….. I have personal experience of dumping the contents of filing cabinets into skips, I was paid Sunday overtime to do it not pleasant but when your employer pays you to do something!
Even when a change was made to a different maintenance contractor because the managers were not always TUPE'd over they would errrrrrrrrrrrr loose the records

Even now in NR historic records of quite a lot of equipment is lacking


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 04, 2019, 10:10:43 pm
Reported elsewhere that the first 387 units stabled overnight in the new Swindon Cocklebury Carriage Sidings have been vandalised ::)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightonedee on January 04, 2019, 10:56:54 pm
Quote
If I have read things rightly, one problem with the work has been not knowing the true nature of what was on the railway. Over the years that have passed since the job should have been done - about 3 decades by my reckoning - a lot has happened to the railway, with tracks replaced, removed, remodelled and slewed, cables for signalling, telephones, internet and other things laid and buried alongside them, and less than comprehensive records kept of what was where. Someone must have known that there was a strong likelihood of what Donald Rumsfeld called "known unknowns" lurking, ready to show themselves only when work commences?

and

Quote
Thames Water probably have a similar problem. There was a massive sale of their paper record maps, presumably before they had digitised them all. So it is not unusual for them to claim they don't know where the pipes are.

This does seem to be where the smoking gun might be. In my experience this is one of the universal laws of organisations. Although some value proper archiving and record keeping there are very few sectors (mostly museum, library or academic) where this is ingrained as part of the organisational culture. Cyclings' example of Thames Water is typical of the services sector (whether public sector or private). The water companies/sewer undertakers have inherited records from a number of predecessor bodies - parishes, boroughs, old fashioned rural and urban district councils and so on. Some of those might have had good practice, but that could change over time, and might have depended on the diligence or honesty of individuals in post at the relevant time, and much work would even then have been undertaken by outside contractors who might not have kept records accurately, or put pipes, cables or similar where shown on the plans to which they were meant to be working. No doubt exactly the same happened in the railway sector, even before the upheavals of the run up to privatisation.

But all this should have been on the agenda of those planning the GWML electrification project. The problem is such important practical considerations do not feature in the world of economics, accountancy, PR and social science that drive so much important decision making in this country. I cannot be certain, but what I have heard about bridge heights being wrong and the painfully slow and haphazard nature of the way the stanchion bases were installed looked very much like a project where the contractor was finding out what they were dealing with in the ground as they went along, rather than a project properly planned after thorough prior due diligence and surveys.   

This is why I for one am deeply fed up that instead of properly analysing what went wrong with costing the project, but completing it, the idiots from the above sectors have left us with the half completed job and we will have to live with the unsatisfactory result for years. How will HMG/the Treasury etc avoid a repetition in future if they do not get a group of people who know what goes wrong on engineering projects to produce a proper report and publish it? After all the Reading reconstruction was reportedly completed on time and within budget - was it simply that everyone concerned was so conscious of the challenge of completely replacing all the track, platforms and infrastructure at this key point on the network they did the preparation properly first, whereas sticking up a few poles, wires and transformers alongside the track was not taken so seriously? Or was it that someone on high told them to get going as soon as possible so that the publicity dividend from completing a project stretching across southern England would not be delayed?

 



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on January 05, 2019, 12:37:54 am
Even when a change was made to a different maintenance contractor because the managers were not always TUPE'd over they would errrrrrrrrrrrr loose the records

Er, I don't think that you are allowed to call someone a TUPE'd man or (especially woman) any more...  ;D

Good points, though. Presumably at the time rail travel was shrinking, and lines be singled or, as at Filton Bank, halved to two tracks, there may have been some who thought "Why on earth are we keeping all these drawing of what the track layout looked like in happier times? No-one is ever going to want to look at them again."

As well as that, you had all the emergency track renewals post Hatfield - something that proved that best practice was not always followed - which would have resulted in significant changes to track geometry in places, including depth of ballast, with each piece of work being as a stand-alone job. I'm betting the records weren't always updated immediately.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on January 05, 2019, 08:43:38 am
In my experience, records of the location of underground assets in streets are almost universally bad. Part of the problem is that they were based on the design drawing and that when the trench was actually dug it did not necessarily follow that line - particularly if it found some other pipe or cable was not where it was supposed to be and had to divert round it. 

Sewer records are particularly bad (they vary, in my experience between mostly right and non-existant) but at least sewers tend to be laid straight between manholes. The proportion of sewer records that are 'mostly right' has increased in recent years. The only really good records where those of Thames Water's London Trunk Sewers. 

The only utility that produced and kept 'as built' records consistently was the GPO/Post of Telephones who kept this data in survey books with offsets from the kerb or the buildings at the back of the footway. That was fine so long as these landmarks were not demolished or moved.  Then you were on your own again. 

Now put that situation onto a railway track.  What are the landmarks you would use to plot the location of a cable?  In almost all cases it would be the track. Change the track alignment slightly and your records are useless.

It is only new, with the use of GPS location of records that it is practicable to make these records relative to an absolute datum as to ensure you can go back to the same point.  You records then need to record how the data was produced so that you know how accurate they are likely to be.

 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on January 05, 2019, 09:55:48 am
Even when a change was made to a different maintenance contractor because the managers were not always TUPE'd over they would errrrrrrrrrrrr loose the records

Er, I don't think that you are allowed to call someone a TUPE'd man or (especially woman) any more...  ;D

Good points, though. Presumably at the time rail travel was shrinking, and lines be singled or, as at Filton Bank, halved to two tracks, there may have been some who thought "Why on earth are we keeping all these drawing of what the track layout looked like in happier times? No-one is ever going to want to look at them again."

As well as that, you had all the emergency track renewals post Hatfield - something that proved that best practice was not always followed - which would have resulted in significant changes to track geometry in places, including depth of ballast, with each piece of work being as a stand-alone job. I'm betting the records weren't always updated immediately.


Very old records that were deemed not current were sent NRM by BR, privatisation early days things were a bit more sketchy


Today for new projects NR uses BIM based system, is developing 3D models etc held in a National system that contractors have access to for their projects.  Also NR has its own "google (c)" stylee map and rail type view.  Many records are now accessible online as pdf for front line staff


Things are improving, its a gradual process which will get there in the end …………………….. unless the politicians cause turmoil in the industry again


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on January 05, 2019, 10:00:29 am
Things are improving, its a gradual process which will get there in the end …………………….. unless the politicians cause turmoil in the industry again

I read something yesterday about NHS GP IT systems that the Government want to do something radical to improve.  An NHS GP IT manager replied that they had just about fixed all that the Minister said was wrong with the systems and that the last thing they needed was something radical!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Hellzapoppin on January 05, 2019, 12:55:55 pm
Well this is my first post and it's about a subject I know a little about I thought I'd join in and try to dispel some of the myths surrounding the whole buried cables issue or indeed non issue.
First off, all the available drawings for the Western Route were collated and scanned some years ago, as the odd ones remaining become available then they to are subjected to the same process.
The rules surrounding buried services are laid down in H&S law and all industries incl the railway have to comply. The rules are quite simple really and set out a set of steps which if followed should reduce the risk of damage to any services within the work area.
I'm not going to go into the full details but let's look at a scenario where someone wants to install some equipment which involves excavation.
             RULE 1. UNLESS YOU KNOW OTHERWISE NEVER ASSUME THERE IS NOTHING THERE. ALWAYS FOLLOW RULE 1

Step 1. Obtain where possible drawings showing the services in the area. None available or not up to date go to Step 2
Step 2. Ask the asset owners if they know of any services in the area which may not be on the drawings. If unknown then go to Step 3.
Step 3. Carry out trial holes and fully CAT Scan the area. Please note that not all services show up with a CAT Scanner.
If services/obstructions are found then note and report the issue. In addition use that info to update the records.
Step 4. If the area is clear then carry out your work.

It should be noted that this process is for buried services which on the railway can include lots of things; drainage, cables, culverts, old foundations, old sleepers, rail never recovered, the original foundations for Swindon station etc etc. You can never assume anything when it comes to buried services and even if you had the drawings you MUST always do further investigation work.
There is actually 1 step prior to step 1 above which may be useful: Find an old git with the local knowledge who knows cables and ask him what's there.
I also see above a reference to the Filton Bank Project. All the redundant cables, where possible, have been recovered and any left in the ground are known about and plotted. The plastic ducts you see are temporary protection until the new trough routes are installed.

Hope I haven't waffled on too long for my first post and I'm happy to answer any generic questions about cables on the Railway.

 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 05, 2019, 01:07:11 pm
Welcome to the forum.  Which railway discipline do you work in?  Useful to know when we make our technical posts ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 05, 2019, 01:18:26 pm
Well this is my first post and it's about a subject I know a little about I thought I'd join in and try to dispel some of the myths surrounding the whole buried cables issue or indeed non issue.
First off, all the available drawings for the Western Route were collated and scanned some years ago, as the odd ones remaining become available then they to are subjected to the same process.
The rules surrounding buried services are laid down in H&S law and all industries incl the railway have to comply. The rules are quite simple really and set out a set of steps which if followed should reduce the risk of damage to any services within the work area.
I'm not going to go into the full details but let's look at a scenario where someone wants to install some equipment which involves excavation.
             RULE 1. UNLESS YOU KNOW OTHERWISE NEVER ASSUME THERE IS NOTHING THERE. ALWAYS FOLLOW RULE 1

Step 1. Obtain where possible drawings showing the services in the area. None available or not up to date go to Step 2
Step 2. Ask the asset owners if they know of any services in the area which may not be on the drawings. If unknown then go to Step 3.
Step 3. Carry out trial holes and fully CAT Scan the area. Please note that not all services show up with a CAT Scanner.
If services/obstructions are found then note and report the issue. In addition use that info to update the records.
Step 4. If the area is clear then carry out your work.

It should be noted that this process is for buried services which on the railway can include lots of things; drainage, cables, culverts, old foundations, old sleepers, rail never recovered, the original foundations for Swindon station etc etc. You can never assume anything when it comes to buried services and even if you had the drawings you MUST always do further investigation work.
There is actually 1 step prior to step 1 above which may be useful: Find an old git with the local knowledge who knows cables and ask him what's there.
I also see above a reference to the Filton Bank Project. All the redundant cables, where possible, have been recovered and any left in the ground are known about and plotted. The plastic ducts you see are temporary protection until the new trough routes are installed.

Hope I haven't waffled on too long for my first post and I'm happy to answer any generic questions about cables on the Railway.

 



I think this is what I put in my post?. Yes I wondered whether the ducts would later be removed.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Hellzapoppin on January 05, 2019, 05:29:34 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RSCz-35M9hA (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RSCz-35M9hA)

Well I hope I've managed to post this link properly and if so it shows what can happen if you don't follow the rules properly.
The American system of dealing with buried services differs from ours in that the utility owner has to attend site and mark up where their assets are. In the case shown it was known there was a gas line in the area but the owner didn't know exactly where it was. The contractor was told to stand down until further investigations were carried out but as the job was nearly finished and behind schedule the contractor decided to carry on with tragic consequences. Scary stuff.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on January 05, 2019, 07:40:36 pm
Welcome indeed, Hellzapoppin! That link works, and certainly does illustrate the potential for disaster from unknown buried stuff. I'm glad to read that Filton Bank has been properly cleared up, which is entirely appropriate for an engineering project of that size.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 05, 2019, 09:35:03 pm
On the little thing in the top left corner of my screen is now blank, reporting no cancellations.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on January 06, 2019, 07:15:29 am
On the little thing in the top left corner of my screen is now blank, reporting no cancellations.

I hope it still contained a map outline and the roadwork spots?   The map tends to show fewer (or no) cancellations / changes late in the evening or in the early hours when fewer trains are running and fewer expected in the next 6 hours or so.  And in an ideal world, it would always be clear.   But with so many services running, I suspect that it'll be rare for it to be routinely totally clear during the day for a long while yet.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on January 06, 2019, 12:01:19 pm
I've just read of a, hopefully very rare, OHLE failure – the line somehow broke and fell on to a train in Krakow central station. No injuries reported. Hopefully we won't see that happening here!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on January 06, 2019, 01:00:55 pm
I've just read of a, hopefully very rare, OHLE failure – the line somehow broke and fell on to a train in Krakow central station. No injuries reported. Hopefully we won't see that happening here!
It happened in one of the St Pancras HS1 platforms in a few years ago, there’s a RAIB report about it.

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 06, 2019, 02:27:04 pm
I've just read of a, hopefully very rare, OHLE failure – the line somehow broke and fell on to a train in Krakow central station. No injuries reported. Hopefully we won't see that happening here!

Oh! no, Why, was it made of Knicker elastic?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on January 12, 2019, 09:18:00 am
Took a 387 for the first time on the B&H yesterday, the 1K11 which is a semi-fast Newbury to Paddington and used to be an HST until very recently.

It went like the clappers between Thatcham and Theale (covered easily in 7 mins) and then sat at Theale for what seemed like a very long 3 minutes.

This could only be because it can easily "beat the timetable" and needed to wait for the advertised departure time.

Felt so much faster than a Turbo (and an HST, in terms of accelaration and deceleration) on this type of run on the B&H  :)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on January 12, 2019, 02:58:32 pm
Took a 387 for the first time on the B&H yesterday, the 1K11 which is a semi-fast Newbury to Paddington and used to be an HST until very recently.

It went like the clappers between Thatcham and Theale (covered easily in 7 mins) and then sat at Theale for what seemed like a very long 3 minutes.

This could only be because it can easily "beat the timetable" and needed to wait for the advertised departure time.

Felt so much faster than a Turbo (and an HST, in terms of accelaration and deceleration) on this type of run on the B&H  :)



Yep, in the current timetable they will be running to the original timings for the slowest of the diesel traction, timings will be adjusted in the future.

387's are quicker off the mark than a 165/6 and 253 and breaking is much much better


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: GBM on January 12, 2019, 03:33:24 pm

387's are quicker off the mark than a 165/6 and 253 and breaking is much much better
[/quote]
Pedantic alert - really hope not  ;D ;D  (apologies ET)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on January 12, 2019, 06:08:22 pm

387's are quicker off the mark than a 165/6 and 253 and breaking is much much better
Pedantic alert - really hope not  ;D ;D  (apologies ET)
[/quote]

Problem being an electrical engineer with circuit breakers  ;D

Oh tidy up the quotes  ::)  not that I am be pedantic  ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 12, 2019, 08:03:45 pm
Reported elsewhere that an attempt was made last night (11 January) to steal the contact (or return) wire from an substantial length at Newport.....


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 12, 2019, 08:06:53 pm
Reported elsewhere that an attempt was made last night (11 January) to steal the conductor or return wire from a substantial length at Newport.....

Was it live, if was that would have taught them.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 14, 2019, 09:59:35 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on January 14, 2019, 10:10:46 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.
European Rail Traffic Management System
Put simply in cab signaling system with direct contact with the driver ,rather than having signal equipment at the lineside as we have at the moment.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 14, 2019, 10:19:30 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.
European Rail Traffic Management System
Put simply in cab signaling system with direct contact with the driver ,rather than having signal equipment at the lineside as we have at the moment.

This does not sound to be very safe to me, I feel a lot safer on a train if a driver can see an actual signal and a route indicator.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on January 14, 2019, 10:56:37 pm
This does not sound to be very safe to me, I feel a lot safer on a train if a driver can see an actual signal and a route indicator.

Feeling and being safe are not necessarily the same thing, of course.

And the driver does get a signal - just that it's in his cab and not out in the foul weather where it has be be ruggedised and maintained in those tough conditions, and cannot be easily moved ...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on January 14, 2019, 11:03:55 pm
This does not sound to be very safe to me, I feel a lot safer on a train if a driver can see an actual signal and a route indicator.

In-cab signalling is a proven technology. Its in use on High Speed 1 in the UK, on lines across Europe, China and Japan use it on their high speed lines, and it is being introduced in many other countries on their 'classic' lines.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 14, 2019, 11:45:32 pm
This does not sound to be very safe to me, I feel a lot safer on a train if a driver can see an actual signal and a route indicator.

In-cab signalling is a proven technology. Its in use on High Speed 1 in the UK, on lines across Europe, China and Japan use it on their high speed lines, and it is being introduced in many other countries on their 'classic' lines.

.....and the London Underground Victoria Line has had such a system since 1968..... ::)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 15, 2019, 12:41:46 pm
This does not sound to be very safe to me, I feel a lot safer on a train if a driver can see an actual signal and a route indicator.

In-cab signalling is a proven technology. Its in use on High Speed 1 in the UK, on lines across Europe, China and Japan use it on their high speed lines, and it is being introduced in many other countries on their 'classic' lines.

.....and the London Underground Victoria Line has had such a system since 1968..... ::)

Did not think that it had already been used. For arguments sake. For example, if it was already installed between Birmingham New Street and Westerleigh Junction, how would a driver know which route he is given at signal G50 at Barnwood Junction. At the moment he has a four Aspect signal with a Pos 4,5,6 Junction Indicator. No indicator is down avoiding, pos 4 is up avoiding + avoiding loop via extra stencil, pos 5 down loop, pos 6 down main into Gloucester. Then another signal with the same indications G52, but with routes to the platforms. So what type of screen or device would he have for the routes described and does he have some sort of marker board where the block section is.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on January 15, 2019, 05:54:31 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.

No, the UK is one of the lead specifiers in the systems.  NR will remain compliant with TSI, however UK Gov have indicated some relaxing of some requirements which they could do irrespective of being in the EU or not


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on January 15, 2019, 06:34:42 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.

We could do, but since the main manufacturers will be making all their products ERTMS compliant - as a large number of the customers will require that - it will probably be more expensive in the long run to abandon it here in the UK. To specify non-standard products would add expense.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 15, 2019, 06:34:55 pm
This does not sound to be very safe to me, I feel a lot safer on a train if a driver can see an actual signal and a route indicator.

In-cab signalling is a proven technology. Its in use on High Speed 1 in the UK, on lines across Europe, China and Japan use it on their high speed lines, and it is being introduced in many other countries on their 'classic' lines.

.....and the London Underground Victoria Line has had such a system since 1968..... ::)

Did not think that it had already been used. For arguments sake. For example, if it was already installed between Birmingham New Street and Westerleigh Junction, how would a driver know which route he is given at signal G50 at Barnwood Junction. At the moment he has a four Aspect signal with a Pos 4,5,6 Junction Indicator. No indicator is down avoiding, pos 4 is up avoiding + avoiding loop via extra stencil, pos 5 down loop, pos 6 down main into Gloucester. Then another signal with the same indications G52, but with routes to the platforms. So what type of screen or device would he have for the routes described and does he have some sort of marker board where the block section is.

Suggest you put the kettle on and have a little read of this: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_Train_Control_System


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 15, 2019, 06:37:03 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.

We could do, but since the main manufacturers will be making all their products ERTMS compliant - as a large number of the customers will require that - it will probably be more expensive in the long run to abandon it here in the UK. To specify non-standard products would add expense.


...and who would actally manufacture any alternative system?  We don't have any such manufacturers in the UK now  ::)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 15, 2019, 10:01:24 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.

We could do, but since the main manufacturers will be making all their products ERTMS compliant - as a large number of the customers will require that - it will probably be more expensive in the long run to abandon it here in the UK. To specify non-standard products would add expense.


...and who would actally manufacture any alternative system?  We don't have any such manufacturers in the UK now  ::)

Why don't unipart?. They are making other signalling systems.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on January 15, 2019, 10:09:18 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.

We could do, but since the main manufacturers will be making all their products ERTMS compliant - as a large number of the customers will require that - it will probably be more expensive in the long run to abandon it here in the UK. To specify non-standard products would add expense.


...and who would actally manufacture any alternative system?  We don't have any such manufacturers in the UK now  ::)

Why don't unipart?. They are making other signalling systems.
Unipart don't manufacture anything.  They are a supply chain organisation.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 15, 2019, 11:01:31 pm
Because we are coming out of Europe now it seems, Are Network Rail going to have to abandon E.R.T.M.S. Also confused as to what it is, but sounds ever so expensive.

We could do, but since the main manufacturers will be making all their products ERTMS compliant - as a large number of the customers will require that - it will probably be more expensive in the long run to abandon it here in the UK. To specify non-standard products would add expense.


...and who would actally manufacture any alternative system?  We don't have any such manufacturers in the UK now  ::)

Why don't unipart?. They are making other signalling systems.
Unipart don't manufacture anything.  They are a supply chain organisation.

Didn't they used to supply car parts at one time?. the only one I knew, closed down.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on January 15, 2019, 11:47:14 pm
They were at one time the parts delivery and supplies operation of BLMC / Austin Rover.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: welshman on January 16, 2019, 09:48:36 am
ERTMS has been in use on the Cambrian Line for a number of years.

Back to the subject heading, I travelled from CDF to PAD yesterday on a 9 car IEP.  We plugged into the mains at BPW.

Oddly, on the return 9 car (stopping at Didcot) we went on to diesel for the Didcot restart before reverting to OLE after a few minutes and while in motion.  The diesels were restarted as we slowed between Westerleigh Junction and BPW.



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on January 16, 2019, 09:52:33 am
Oddly, on the return 9 car (stopping at Didcot) we went on to diesel for the Didcot restart before reverting to OLE after a few minutes and while in motion. 

That is to ensure that they did not have to slow down to get under the bridge at Steventon. AIUI on the up journey you presumably did slow down as you were on the approach to Didcot. 



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightonedee on January 16, 2019, 09:54:21 am
Quote
They were at one time the parts delivery and supplies operation of BLMC / Austin Rover.

...and now an apparently successful outsourcing/logistics/parts supplier, including to the rail industry - see https://unipart.com/

It does not look like they manufacture signalling equipment, but can probably help you find a supplier


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: welshman on January 16, 2019, 10:00:54 am
Quote
That is to ensure that they did not have to slow down to get under the bridge at Steventon.  AIUI on the up journey you presumably did slow down as you were on the approach to Didcot.


I confess that I didn't notice - the up service wasn't stopping at Didcot and I didn't have my anorak on.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 16, 2019, 03:12:41 pm
Remember the furore over the OHLE through Goring?  Well this is the outcome, from the Henley Standard:

"LANDOWNERS in the Goring area can apply for grants from Network Rail to improve plots that adjoin the Great Western main line through the village.

The company is offering sums of between £10,000 and £100,000 to offset the impact of the electrification of the route, which started in 2015 and prompted complaints about the “unsightly” metal gantries that were installed to hold up overhead cables.

Network Rail promised to consider installing alternative designs but progress stalled as opponents said these wouldn’t reduce the visual impact. Now the company says it wants to support any projects which would result in new woodland being planted, enhance existing woodland or improve access between wooded areas.

The deadline for applications is October 26 and applicants should be able to deliver their schemes over a four-year period.

For more information, visit www.trustforoxfordshire."

Found this?. Why do they not cover them over in gwr railway colour green paint, that would disguise them from the residents. I expect B - Q have got some offers on cheap paint.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Dispatch Box on January 17, 2019, 09:21:29 pm
Did anyone watch TONIGHT ON ITV1?. It was very riveting, it was saying that we got these new trains and that many of them do not seem to be using the overhead wires. Also stated that they were fitted with diesel engines that was mentioned, added to weight and made them less economic. It also stated that 10 billion has been spent on electrifying the line and still does not reach Swansea yet. Some much needed schemes have been shelved. Some passengers were interviewed and were not happy. I think the whole lot was badly planned.

The government and NR should of allocated funds to do the following work in stages.

1. Start a Paddington, put up wires, sort track and signalling.

2. Then reading.

3. Then Didcot.

4. Then Oxford and Cotswold line.

5. Then Swindon.

6. Then BPW and BTM.

7. Then Gloucester, Cheltenham and Worcester.

8. Then line to Newport.

9. Then Cardiff.

Numbers above should have been done under groups shown.

I.E 1 - 2 CP1. 2 -3 CP2 4 - 5 CP3 6 - 7 CP4 CP5 REST OF COUNTRY.  8 - 9 CP6. CP7 - LATER = MAINTAIN IT.
Then we would of had an electrified railway all complete and new tracks and trains and would of been much more cheaply, as abroad.

Worcester would not be electrified or the Cotswold line.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on January 26, 2019, 04:41:32 pm
Following on from a post by S&TE concerning No-Signalman Token Remote working, I realised that railsigns.uk might be just the place to find out what the electrification signs now festooning the GWML mean! With apologies if this has already been posted elsewhere, and for those like me who find this kind of thing interesting, the answer is here: http://www.railsigns.uk/sect18page2/sect18page2.html


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on March 16, 2019, 08:37:09 pm

Interesting report below to download:

Apologies if already posted elsewhere.

OTC

https://www.riagb.org.uk/RIA/Newsroom/Stories/Electrification_Cost_Challenge_Report.aspx


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on March 16, 2019, 10:16:16 pm

Interesting report below to download:

Apologies if already posted elsewhere.

OTC

https://www.riagb.org.uk/RIA/Newsroom/Stories/Electrification_Cost_Challenge_Report.aspx

Yes, already posted on Re: Cutting the cost of electrification (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=21203.msg260379#msg260379), with surprisingly little reaction to its contents.

This is a quote from the introduction, which certainly does belong here as it is specifically about GWEP:
Quote
The Great Western Electrification Programme (GWEP) was announced in 2009, and was set to cost £1bn to electrify the route to Swansea by December 2017. By the time of the Hendy Review in November 2015 the estimated cost had risen to £2.8bn for electrification to Cardiff by December 2018. In July 2017 the Government announced the cancellation of electrification between Cardiff and Swansea and on the Midland Main Line, north of Kettering. It opted instead for diesel ‘Bi-mode’ trains.

So what went wrong?

The GWEP programme was over-ambitious in trying to introduce internationally novel technology – Overhead Line Equipment (OLE) and Plant – on a live project resulting in the design and development of the equipment being incomplete before construction started. Additionally, there was a non-negotiable date for the introduction of new electric trains over which industry had no control, announced before the infrastructure project had been fully scoped and costed, and which added a further major level of risk to timely and cost-efficient delivery. All this against the background of an industry that had not undertaken an electrification project the scale of GWEP for 20 years and so skills and experience needed to be rebuilt.

To further compound the challenge, an unprecedented number of other new electrification projects were commenced at the same time, all requiring and competing for similar resources. Although, as will be discussed later, most electrification projects were delivered successfully, GWEP, which was the largest and a number of other projects ran into difficulty, and the programme and therefore budget significantly overran.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on March 17, 2019, 06:37:34 pm

"An indication of the additional maintenance cost of a diesel-powered fleet is given by the differing procurement costs of the Great Western and East Coast IEP fleets, which include a 27-year maintenance contract. The Great Western IEP fleet costs £4 million per coach more than the electric East Coast one, mainly because it operates more miles in diesel bi-mode. Thus, the additional diesel maintenance cost of the 369-vehicle GWML bi-mode fleet is around a billion pounds over the period of the maintenance contract."

(Rail Engineer May 2018)

Paying more for less?

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on March 17, 2019, 08:08:11 pm
Finishing the electrification is beginning to look like a bargain we said "No" to.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on March 17, 2019, 11:29:34 pm

"An indication of the additional maintenance cost of a diesel-powered fleet is given by the differing procurement costs of the Great Western and East Coast IEP fleets, which include a 27-year maintenance contract. The Great Western IEP fleet costs £4 million per coach more than the electric East Coast one, mainly because it operates more miles in diesel bi-mode. Thus, the additional diesel maintenance cost of the 369-vehicle GWML bi-mode fleet is around a billion pounds over the period of the maintenance contract."

(Rail Engineer May 2018)

Paying more for less?

OTC

Depends what you mean. I presume that figure of £4 million was taken from the 2014 NAO report, which gives 7.1 and 11.1 £m for the two fleets. Note that this was after the VTEC option order was added, but before the switch to all bimodes for GW.

The NAO report says the difference was due to:
Quote
• a reduction in contract price offered by Agility for the additional East Coast fleet as a result of the Department exercising the option to procure an additional 270 carriages (see Part Five);
• lower costs of finance on East Coast due to this part of the deal reaching financial close in April 2014, when economic conditions and the Japanese yen to pound sterling exchange rates were more favourable; and
• a higher proportion of miles done by bi-mode trains in the Great Western fleet, which are more expensive to manufacture and maintain than the electric variants.

Note that last point is not just that the GW bimodes were to do more miles each on diesel, but that they were then a higher fraction of the fleet so the cost of the motor/generators was higher. But really all we know is that the figure as quoted is wrong - it could be wrong in any direction.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on March 18, 2019, 03:11:10 pm

Depends what you mean. I presume that figure of £4 million was taken from the 2014 NAO report, which gives 7.1 and 11.1 £m for the two fleets. Note that this was after the VTEC option order was added, but before the switch to all bimodes for GW.

The NAO report says the difference was due to:
Quote
• a reduction in contract price offered by Agility for the additional East Coast fleet as a result of the Department exercising the option to procure an additional 270 carriages (see Part Five);
• lower costs of finance on East Coast due to this part of the deal reaching financial close in April 2014, when economic conditions and the Japanese yen to pound sterling exchange rates were more favourable; and
• a higher proportion of miles done by bi-mode trains in the Great Western fleet, which are more expensive to manufacture and maintain than the electric variants.

Note that last point is not just that the GW bimodes were to do more miles each on diesel, but that they were then a higher fraction of the fleet so the cost of the motor/generators was higher. But really all we know is that the figure as quoted is wrong - it could be wrong in any direction.

Until the electrification pause, there were going to be a lot fewer diesels fitted to IET trains.  You would think environmental considerations would come into play as well as cost. It's all very well the government making futile demands that we all switch to electric cars very soon, but the example is not a good one.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on March 18, 2019, 04:48:42 pm
As I understand it these trains have a design life of 27.5 years. Would it be far-fetched to imagine that they will probably have a mid-life refit? If so, perhaps we can hope that this will involve some removal of diesel kit, to coincide with the extension of electrification.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on March 18, 2019, 06:18:59 pm
As I understand it these trains have a design life of 27.5 years. Would it be far-fetched to imagine that they will probably have a mid-life refit? If so, perhaps we can hope that this will involve some removal of diesel kit, to coincide with the extension of electrification.

That would give about 14 years to have the remaining electrification completed. Once upon a time I would have said that was no problem but now......


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on March 18, 2019, 08:07:23 pm
As I understand it these trains have a design life of 27.5 years. Would it be far-fetched to imagine that they will probably have a mid-life refit? If so, perhaps we can hope that this will involve some removal of diesel kit, to coincide with the extension of electrification.

That would give about 14 years to have the remaining electrification completed. Once upon a time I would have said that was no problem but now......

My thinking too, although I think the most likely outcome will be a mad panic in just under 27½ years' time. Years later, as the 40th anniversary of the first IETs approaches, plans will be announced to replace them. This will raise a storm of protest from the many passengers who love them greatly, especially for their comfy seats and visionary catering trolleys, and don't think the replacements, to be supplied under the only international trade we have signed since Brexit, will be much good. I mean, what does North Korea know about trains, eh?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on March 18, 2019, 08:24:28 pm
(https://www.seat61.com/images/pyongyang-station3.jpg)
It looks like there's OHLE in Pyongyang.
https://www.seat61.com/NorthKorea.htm


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: sikejsudjek3 on March 19, 2019, 09:22:08 am
As I understand it these trains have a design life of 27.5 years. Would it be far-fetched to imagine that they will probably have a mid-life refit? If so, perhaps we can hope that this will involve some removal of diesel kit, to coincide with the extension of electrification.

That would give about 14 years to have the remaining electrification completed. Once upon a time I would have said that was no problem but now......

My thinking too, although I think the most likely outcome will be a mad panic in just under 27½ years' time. Years later, as the 40th anniversary of the first IETs approaches, plans will be announced to replace them. This will raise a storm of protest from the many passengers who love them greatly, especially for their comfy seats and visionary catering trolleys, and don't think the replacements, to be supplied under the only international trade we have signed since Brexit, will be much good. I mean, what does North Korea know about trains, eh?


We could always make new trains in the UK under a publicly owned system. Oh wait that would be a disaster wouldn't it.... HST was superior to Hitachi's efforts and that was made decades ago !


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on March 19, 2019, 12:39:34 pm
We could always make new trains in the UK under a publicly owned system. Oh wait that would be a disaster wouldn't it.... HST was superior to Hitachi's efforts and that was made decades ago !

...as was, or rather wasn't, the APT. It's not about who owns what, but how you write the spec.

Some would argue that the HST was a success because, for once, the engineers were just allowed to get on with it without too much expectation or interference.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on March 19, 2019, 03:52:07 pm
As I understand it these trains have a design life of 27.5 years. Would it be far-fetched to imagine that they will probably have a mid-life refit? If so, perhaps we can hope that this will involve some removal of diesel kit, to coincide with the extension of electrification.

Yes to a mid-life refit.

Could all their routes be wired by 2030? ECML - yes (including Hull, Inverness, Middlesborough), Swansea - yes, Bristol - yes, Gloucester - yes, Cotswold - perhaps, Westbury - yes, beyond Westbury to Cornwall - wouldn't put money on it.

Will the wiring be so reliable that the diesel engines never get used? I wouldn't put money on it. 

So I reckon the engines end up staying, but be used less.

That said, it's interesting to see that the windy weather last week has resulted in a record proportion of the UK's electricity being generated by (mainly offshore) wind, so you never know, we could end up in a situation where the electricity generators were prepared to pay for electrification in exchange for long-term forward-contracts. Even Grayling would presumably have little problem with electrification if someone else were paying for it.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on March 19, 2019, 04:19:29 pm
As I understand it these trains have a design life of 27.5 years. Would it be far-fetched to imagine that they will probably have a mid-life refit? If so, perhaps we can hope that this will involve some removal of diesel kit, to coincide with the extension of electrification.

Yes to a mid-life refit.

Could all their routes be wired by 2030? ECML - yes (including Hull, Inverness, Middlesborough), Swansea - yes, Bristol - yes, Gloucester - yes, Cotswold - perhaps, Westbury - yes, beyond Westbury to Cornwall - wouldn't put money on it.

The government have 'guaranteed' their use for 27.5 years as part of the contract with Hitachi.  That's different to their design life though, and a new contract could and probably will be drawn up as the current one expires.  Modern trains have a rough minimum of 30 years for diesel and 40 years for electric, but can be made to provide good service long after that if market conditions and safety regulations are favourable.  HSTs, Class 150s, Class 313s are all good examples from various fleet types that will be running for a few years yet.

I can certainly see some 80x trains having engines removed at some point in their lives.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on March 19, 2019, 04:39:55 pm
As I understand it these trains have a design life of 27.5 years. Would it be far-fetched to imagine that they will probably have a mid-life refit? If so, perhaps we can hope that this will involve some removal of diesel kit, to coincide with the extension of electrification.

That would give about 14 years to have the remaining electrification completed. Once upon a time I would have said that was no problem but now......

My thinking too, although I think the most likely outcome will be a mad panic in just under 27½ years' time. Years later, as the 40th anniversary of the first IETs approaches, plans will be announced to replace them. This will raise a storm of protest from the many passengers who love them greatly, especially for their comfy seats and visionary catering trolleys, and don't think the replacements, to be supplied under the only international trade we have signed since Brexit, will be much good. I mean, what does North Korea know about trains, eh?


We could always make new trains in the UK under a publicly owned system. Oh wait that would be a disaster wouldn't it.... HST was superior to Hitachi's efforts and that was made decades ago !

Bit of perspective need here ………………

40 years ago the Intercity 125 (HSDT) were not a resounding success, there were a catalogue of quite serious defects.
Engine Turbo Charger bearing failures leasing to oil leaks causing exhaust system fires
Engine coolant and lub system pipe work and ducting within the engine leaks
Engine main and conrod bearing failures.
Anti wheel slip not functioning causing tryer flats on coaches
Brake pad excessive wear
Brake disks fracturing leading to complete disk falling off of the wheel
Coach vent fan motor failing
Coach batteries over charging.

These are only the ones I was aware of when I was an apprentice working on them in the late 1970's
The HST's were only meant as a 10 stop gap on the Bristol and South Wales services as the Western Region was "planned" for electrification in the late 1980's with a max service life of 30 years and that included 1 major half life refit in the Works


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on March 19, 2019, 06:36:34 pm
I do remember the brakes on HSTs being astonishingly stinky in the early days...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on March 19, 2019, 08:08:36 pm
I do remember the brakes on HSTs being astonishingly stinky in the early days...

So was I...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on March 19, 2019, 08:49:58 pm
I do remember the brakes on HSTs being astonishingly stinky in the early days...
Still are if the driver has to slam on the brakes. But yes very rare to experience that these days.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on March 20, 2019, 08:22:41 pm
(https://www.seat61.com/images/pyongyang-station3.jpg)
It looks like there's OHLE in Pyongyang.

Not always electricity, though...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Incider on March 20, 2019, 11:07:28 pm
I do remember the brakes on HSTs being astonishingly stinky in the early days...

Hence fitting a FAD (fresh air damper) to the HVAC intake, now if that doesn’t work, then you get the smell of the brakes in the coach.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on March 20, 2019, 11:13:32 pm
Quote from: Electric train link=topic=18592.msg260770#msg260770

40 years ago the Intercity 125 (HSDT) were not a resounding success, there were a catalogue of quite serious defects.


The list of faults was typical of most advanced engineering products of the time. Closer tolerance machining, better lubricants and their understanding, more disciplined manufacture and quality control, better electronics and control systems, IT etc etc have transformed our performance expectations.

The Mark 3/125 comparison is best with a hunting, cart sprung mark 1, with steam heating that froze in the cold and electrics from a 24V belt drive dynamo.

I sympathise with ET's experience as an apprentice but that's what makes him so valuable to the railway (and us all) now.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on March 21, 2019, 05:19:29 pm
Anyway, I caught a HST home from Exeter early this afternoon. It is highly unlikely that I shall take another train ride before next Thursday, after which I definitely won't before early May. Have I, like grahame, had my last ride on a full-size HST? If so, thanks and farewell!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on March 21, 2019, 05:28:34 pm
Won't be long before you'll be able to ride one again, at a sedate 25mi/hr from Kidderminster to Bridgnorth... might not be quite the same though.

Edit: Two typos!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on March 21, 2019, 05:49:20 pm
Won't be long before you'll be able to ride one again, at a sedate 25mi/hr from Kidderminster to Bridgenorth... might not be quite the same thought.

Like using Red Rum for kiddie rides on Blackpool sands.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on March 21, 2019, 07:00:26 pm
Had HST as Traction both ways between Bri and Tau yesterday Xcountry both ways.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on April 03, 2019, 12:15:46 pm
Sunday sees the section between Wootton Bassett and just east of Chippenham (93m 31c) energised, with a view towards passenger authorisation at the end of the month.  This includes the 1 in 100 Dauntsey Bank which IETs on electric should fly up! 

A shame Chippenham station itself isn’t included as that would probably save a further minute for departing IET trains to London, but the difference should still be felt.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on April 06, 2019, 11:22:00 am
Sunday sees the section between Wootton Bassett and just east of Chippenham (93m 31c) energised, with a view towards passenger authorisation at the end of the month.  This includes the 1 in 100 Dauntsey Bank which IETs on electric should fly up! 

A shame Chippenham station itself isn’t included as that would probably save a further minute for departing IET trains to London, but the difference should still be felt.

Given that DfT have approved a bit more electrification on the MML there is potential for more parts of the GWML although I expect the Oxford "branch" to be done first.  Going past 93m 31c and through to Temple Meads is dependent on resolving the issues through Bath and the bridge at Chippenham


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on April 06, 2019, 12:31:56 pm
Given that DfT have approved a bit more electrification on the MML there is potential for more parts of the GWML although I expect the Oxford "branch" to be done first.  Going past 93m 31c and through to Temple Meads is dependent on resolving the issues through Bath and the bridge at Chippenham

A quick google suggests that the difference in all-up mass between a full-length all-electric IEP train and a bi-mode is 23 tonnes. I wonder how far an electric train fitted with 23 tonnes of batteries could get?

You should be able to store well over 100 W-h/kg, so even if you could only have 15 tonnes of battery (assuming other kit would be needed to run them) you ought to be able to store at least 1.5MW-h, or - it I've understood this thread (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=16918.msg193784#msg193784) properly -  enough to keep a train (OK, a Pendolino - but close enough I hope) going at full pelt for about 15mins. Just a thought...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Celestial on April 06, 2019, 07:42:14 pm
15 mins doesn't sound like much compared to the flexibility that having the diesels brings, especially if you have to turn around and get the train back under the wires again.  That wouldn't even do Bristol Parkway to Temple Meads and back.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on April 06, 2019, 08:52:44 pm
True but OTOH it wouldn't be going "full pelt" on that stretch, so presumably the batteries should last correspondingly longer (or a bit more, cos of V2 and all that).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Celestial on April 06, 2019, 09:33:03 pm
Maybe, but if they couldn't get to Swansea, Weston, Cheltenham or wherever then I'm not sure of the advantage. I think the original plan was to have some pure electrics when Bristol and Swansea were going to be electrified? That would have made sense, but to take out the diesels and replace with less flexible batteries now would seem to be spending a lot of money to reduce the capability of the trains. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on April 06, 2019, 11:11:46 pm
15 mins doesn't sound like much compared to the flexibility that having the diesels brings, especially if you have to turn around and get the train back under the wires again.  That wouldn't even do Bristol Parkway to Temple Meads and back.

It would get them all the way through Bath with a decent margin, and all the way through Chippenham. Most of the rest of the route could be wired without upsetting anyone...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on April 06, 2019, 11:27:54 pm
15 mins doesn't sound like much compared to the flexibility that having the diesels brings, especially if you have to turn around and get the train back under the wires again.  That wouldn't even do Bristol Parkway to Temple Meads and back.

It would get them all the way through Bath with a decent margin, and all the way through Chippenham. Most of the rest of the route could be wired without upsetting anyone...

Now what has happened to that idea of wiring up the cheaper and more straightforward sections to slingshot the trains with a boost of electricity ... talk was some of the stiff climbs on the Devon banks, but how about Batheaston to Thingley where we've had gawd knows how many closure weeks and money spent on lower the track through the tunnels for the electrics!    I suspect Oldfield Park to Keynsham might be possible too - not sure how easily that would plug into the local mains.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on April 07, 2019, 08:46:55 am
15 mins doesn't sound like much compared to the flexibility that having the diesels brings, especially if you have to turn around and get the train back under the wires again.  That wouldn't even do Bristol Parkway to Temple Meads and back.

It would get them all the way through Bath with a decent margin, and all the way through Chippenham. Most of the rest of the route could be wired without upsetting anyone...

Now what has happened to that idea of wiring up the cheaper and more straightforward sections to slingshot the trains with a boost of electricity ... talk was some of the stiff climbs on the Devon banks, but how about Batheaston to Thingley where we've had gawd knows how many closure weeks and money spent on lower the track through the tunnels for the electrics!    I suspect Oldfield Park to Keynsham might be possible too - not sure how easily that would plug into the local mains.


I think there is most 'network benefit' in getting Bristol Temple Meads to Bristol Parkway electrified first (as it will also allow Cardiff to Bristol local services to go electric), followed by Temple Meads to Bath, then fill in the gap between Bath and Chippenham last.

As for battery electric trains, surely it is the Thames Valley branches where this is most readily applicable?  Do the trains spend long enough under the wires at the respective mainline stations to recharge for a round trip?  For the Windsor branch it is perhaps more realistic than Marlow, but presumably it doesn't actually cost much to string up the wires the short distance from Slough to Windsor?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on April 07, 2019, 10:12:59 am
Do the trains spend long enough under the wires at the respective mainline stations to recharge for a round trip?

As it currently stands, only the Marlow service spends any time under the wires at all - generally around 10 minutes each hour at Maidenhead, though it can be less than half of that in the peak hours.  The other stations at West Ealing, Slough and Twyford don't currently have any overhead wires on the bay platforms the trains use.  That's not to say short sections couldn't be added though of course.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on April 07, 2019, 08:47:50 pm
Do the trains spend long enough under the wires at the respective mainline stations to recharge for a round trip?

As it currently stands, only the Marlow service spends any time under the wires at all - generally around 10 minutes each hour at Maidenhead, though it can be less than half of that in the peak hours.  The other stations at West Ealing, Slough and Twyford don't currently have any overhead wires on the bay platforms the trains use.  That's not to say short sections couldn't be added though of course.

Seems surprising that they haven't wired everything in the vicinity of those stations (and might actually be useful) when in other places they are electrifying bits of line which will probably never see an electric train.  For instance, not just platforms 1 and 2 at Severn Tunnel Junction and a couple of hundred metres beyond, but also the freight line that bypasses those platforms.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on April 08, 2019, 10:14:24 am
There's usually some kind of reasoning behind it.  In the case of Severn Tunnel Junction then Platform 2 can be explained as it is sensible policy to wire a couple of hundred metres of diverging routes to prevent an electric train being wrong routed and subsequently stranded.  However, that logic isn't so easy to apply to Platforms 1 and the 'Down Relief' line that goes behind the station.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on April 09, 2019, 02:57:58 pm
Sunday sees the section between Wootton Bassett and just east of Chippenham (93m 31c) energised, with a view towards passenger authorisation at the end of the month. 

Sunday 21st April is the date for passenger authorisation according to a post on another forum.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on April 09, 2019, 06:46:55 pm
Sunday sees the section between Wootton Bassett and just east of Chippenham (93m 31c) energised, with a view towards passenger authorisation at the end of the month.  This includes the 1 in 100 Dauntsey Bank which IETs on electric should fly up! 

A shame Chippenham station itself isn’t included as that would probably save a further minute for departing IET trains to London, but the difference should still be felt.

The chief elements left out in my view are the Box and Middle Hill tunnels, just 5 miles further on; 3410 yards of mostly 1/100 with minimal ventilation for all those diesel fumes. I wonder whether that has been risk-assessed?

The terrain is quite flat and  undemanding from then on. 

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Red Squirrel on April 09, 2019, 06:56:28 pm

The chief elements left out in my view are the Box and Middle Hill tunnels, just 5 miles further on; 3410 yards of mostly 1/100 with minimal ventilation for all those diesel fumes. I wonder whether that has been risk-assessed?


I am sure Dioysius Grayling is on the case.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on April 10, 2019, 12:31:58 am

The chief elements left out in my view are the Box and Middle Hill tunnels, just 5 miles further on; 3410 yards of mostly 1/100 with minimal ventilation for all those diesel fumes. I wonder whether that has been risk-assessed?


I am sure Dioysius Grayling is on the case.

.... exposing that old fool, Brunel.

Why should we need electrification when a freewheeling down train would reach 120mph by the tunnel's West portal?

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on April 10, 2019, 08:37:22 am

The chief elements left out in my view are the Box and Middle Hill tunnels, just 5 miles further on; 3410 yards of mostly 1/100 with minimal ventilation for all those diesel fumes. I wonder whether that has been risk-assessed?


I am sure Dioysius Grayling is on the case.

.... exposing that old fool, Brunel.

Why should we need electrification when a freewheeling down train would reach 120mph by the tunnel's West portal?

OTC


Apart from the speed restrictions, to operate the railway efficiently the trains really need to go both ways. A west bound only service for a station like pilning may not be desirable, but you can't do that for Bristol TM!   :D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on April 10, 2019, 08:50:14 am
Why should we need electrification when a freewheeling down train would reach 120mph by the tunnel's West portal?

Electrify in the "up" direction only?  We've talked a few times about infilling easy sections and that could be directions - up the banks. If you only electrify 50% of the tracks ... does it cost 50% of the money, or 75% or 95%??


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Robin Summerhill on April 10, 2019, 09:02:49 am
Why should we need electrification when a freewheeling down train would reach 120mph by the tunnel's West portal?

Electrify in the "up" direction only?  We've talked a few times about infilling easy sections and that could be directions - up the banks. If you only electrify 50% of the tracks ... does it cost 50% of the money, or 75% or 95%??

Have we all forgotten that the line is signalled for reversible working?

When (as happened to me once some years ago) a HST failed at Thingley, the following train that I was on went up the down line to bypass it. I somehow doubt that a train free-wheeling uphill would manage to do that (OK I accept that the IETs are bi-modal but who is to say that there would never be an all-electric EMU using the route?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on April 10, 2019, 09:16:47 am
Why should we need electrification when a freewheeling down train would reach 120mph by the tunnel's West portal?

Electrify in the "up" direction only?  We've talked a few times about infilling easy sections and that could be directions - up the banks. If you only electrify 50% of the tracks ... does it cost 50% of the money, or 75% or 95%??

Have we all forgotten that the line is signalled for reversible working?

When (as happened to me once some years ago) a HST failed at Thingley, the following train that I was on went up the down line to bypass it. I somehow doubt that a train free-wheeling uphill would manage to do that (OK I accept that the IETs are bi-modal but who is to say that there would never be an all-electric EMU using the route?

The gap between Cocklebury Lane and Thingley Junction would rather preclude the use of an all-electric (and no batteries) EMU as suggested ... and I would suggest that on the few line-swap occasions the Bi-mode would use their Diesel engines for the climb.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on April 10, 2019, 10:33:49 am
The clue is in "Red Squirrel's" use of the name Dionysius (Lardner)

The "up" trains in Box tunnel would then be powered by a Perpetual Motion linkage to the "down", even better than DfT's batteries or Hydrogen and quite Carbon free.

Joking is better than weeping,

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: patch38 on April 10, 2019, 10:44:35 am
Don't forget that you'll need a couple of skyhooks to make it all work.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Celestial on April 13, 2019, 05:50:07 pm
I see that the residents of Goring have effectively lost their battle to get any changes to the electrification in the area.  Network Rail will plant a few trees instead (and probably chop them down in a few years to prevent too many leaves falling on the line).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on April 21, 2019, 11:31:04 am
This was posted on the WNXX Forum:

Quote
The section between Swindon and Christian Malford (just before Chippenham) is now being used as of today (21/04/2019).

800311 was the first up train on 1A07 07:45 Bristol to Paddington service, whilst 802015 + 802019 was the first down train on 1C05 08:00 Paddington to Penzance service.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bradshaw on April 21, 2019, 12:03:47 pm
video can be seen here:

https://twitter.com/25kV/status/1119873030329647104


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on April 21, 2019, 10:10:28 pm
After now, being so close to Bath and Bristol, especially having the work on the Box Tunnel done, it seems utter madness not to finish the job.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on April 22, 2019, 03:51:14 pm
Another update from a poster on the WNXX Forum concerning the Cardiff electrification progress:

Quote
Update on the Cardiff wiring situation:

All platforms on the mainline will be wired: P0/1/2/3/4, along with Line A (Limit of Shunt) turnback and Brickyard turnback roads.

All West facing crossing will be wired to all Class 387 moves from P4/3/2/1 and O west to Brickyard and Line A (LoS).

Unusually, albeit understandably the east facing crossing at the west end of Plat 3 (eastbound) line E to Line D will not be wired.

There is some confusion about Line E (DN Relief) whether it’ll be wired or not, erection of OHL masts seems to say it will be however.

The extent of the wires on the LoS Line A and Brickyard will be extended to allow a 12 car Class 387 to stable/turn back which wasn’t the case originally.

How Valley Lines electrification fits in I don’t know, but the centre roads beyond Cardiff west will not be wired, wired stop at the west junction west facing ladder.

South Wales progress:
Foundations are 98% complete
Small parts fitment is 78% complete.
Wiring is 35% complete.

Still on schedule to juice up in stages:
Severn Tunnel to St Brides
St Brides to Cardiff Central


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Visoflex on April 23, 2019, 09:43:28 am
...it seems utter madness not to finish the job.

You don't know the railway industry that well do you!   ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on April 23, 2019, 10:48:32 am
...it seems utter madness not to finish the job.

You don't know the railway industry that well do you!   ;D

It must be the last shreds of optimism that DfT, NR et al, have not yet robbed me of!  I'll take it a stage further now I've started. If NR's new boss really is good for his reputation for keeping costs down (or so I've heard) then it might need to be looked at again. Sadly, holding my breath that long could make me more than a little dizzy. 😃


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on April 23, 2019, 11:55:18 am
Well, remember that after B****T day that we will no longer have to comply with EU Regulations and we can therefore revert to using the much simpler, lightweight (and hence, cheaper) BR MK3 catenary..... :P


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bradshaw on April 23, 2019, 12:03:20 pm
The letters page of the new edition of Modern Railways has a reply from the ORR to Ian Warmsley’s article. Effectively it says that the role of the ORR is to enforce legislation on Health and Safety. It quotes the Electricity at Work Regulations as the reason that 3rd rail can only be extended in certain circumstance.
It also relates the changes imposed when the UK ‘special national condition’, reflecting historic custom and practice, ceased to be used, forcing the increases in clearances.
It ends with a note on the work being done with NR to try and produce solutions where minimum clearances are difficult to achieve.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on April 23, 2019, 07:53:23 pm
Well, remember that after B****T day that we will no longer have to comply with EU Regulations and we can therefore revert to using the much simpler, lightweight (and hence, cheaper) BR MK3 catenary..... :P

The massive square masts, though - surely the EU didn't mandate those did it?  I don't remember seeing anything like those anywhere on the continent?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on April 23, 2019, 08:47:00 pm
Well, remember that after B****T day that we will no longer have to comply with EU Regulations and we can therefore revert to using the much simpler, lightweight (and hence, cheaper) BR MK3 catenary..... :P

The massive square masts, though - surely the EU didn't mandate those did it?  I don't remember seeing anything like those anywhere on the continent?

Agree and the closer spacing and not using headspan was to make them more resilient, none of that is in EU regulations.  Of course the larger clearances come from an EN standard, but that is not an EU organisation either and RSSB did not have to adopt it straight away and could have added more guidance on risk assessments, which designers could have done anyway. 

So as usual it is people trying to blame the EU for all the problems of their own making.  Just like politicians have been doing for the last 40 years. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on April 24, 2019, 09:55:17 am
I did put a 'tongue in cheek' smiley at the end of my post......


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on April 24, 2019, 07:32:16 pm
Seriously, though - will NR be expected to pare down the spec a bit for the not-yet-authorised bits of the GW electrification to get the costs more in line with what DfT think is reasonable?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on April 25, 2019, 11:15:10 am
Seriously, though - will NR be expected to pare down the spec a bit for the not-yet-authorised bits of the GW electrification to get the costs more in line with what DfT think is reasonable?

I don't think that the "cheap and cheerful"  route is being followed.

The article below (may have been referenced before) explains some of the considerations.

https://www.railengineer.co.uk/2019/03/15/relearning-electrification/

Hope this helps,

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on April 25, 2019, 02:30:22 pm
Well, remember that after B****T day that we will no longer have to comply with EU Regulations and we can therefore revert to using the much simpler, lightweight (and hence, cheaper) BR MK3 catenary..... :P

The massive square masts, though - surely the EU didn't mandate those did it?  I don't remember seeing anything like those anywhere on the continent?

Yes and no - AIUI, the TSI (interoperability standards) mandate a higher level of tension in the wire, which means a thicker (and thus heavier) gauge wire, and so you need beefed up steelwork to carry it.

That said, yes it could be done with much lighter structures. AIUI, the Series 1 catenery had a number of objectives including speed of installation and adjustment on site, minimal maintenance, maximum electrical and mechanical separation, allowing running on one track if the other was isolated, dewired, being worked in etc. 

At the end of the day, the steelwork is the visible bit of electrification, but its capital (and enen installation) costs are relatively low - things like feeder stations and control rooms, resignalling, trackwork, rebuilding structures and project management are where most of the money goes.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on April 26, 2019, 12:36:21 pm
Yes and no - AIUI, the TSI (interoperability standards) mandate a higher level of tension in the wire, which means a thicker (and thus heavier) gauge wire, and so you need beefed up steelwork to carry it.

That said, yes it could be done with much lighter structures. AIUI, the Series 1 catenery had a number of objectives including speed of installation and adjustment on site, minimal maintenance, maximum electrical and mechanical separation, allowing running on one track if the other was isolated, dewired, being worked in etc. 

At the end of the day, the steelwork is the visible bit of electrification, but its capital (and enen installation) costs are relatively low - things like feeder stations and control rooms, resignalling, trackwork, rebuilding structures and project management are where most of the money goes.

You're right, Andrew McNaughton quoted by Modern Railways on Twitter:

Quote
TransPennine Route Upgrade to be the poster child for affordable electrification. Scotland has shown the way by doing schemes affordably. Headline figure £1.2m per single track kilometre - a third civils, a third power supply, a third knitting


https://twitter.com/Modern_Railways/status/1121736492517330951


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on April 26, 2019, 07:42:46 pm
Seriously, though - will NR be expected to pare down the spec a bit for the not-yet-authorised bits of the GW electrification to get the costs more in line with what DfT think is reasonable?

I don't think that the "cheap and cheerful"  route is being followed.

The article below (may have been referenced before) explains some of the considerations.

https://www.railengineer.co.uk/2019/03/15/relearning-electrification/

Hope this helps,

OTC

An interesting article.  I'm struggling with the statement about 15 metre deep foundations, though - the masts are no more than 10 metres high, and I reckon the longest piles I've seen are about 5 metres.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on April 26, 2019, 07:52:59 pm
An interesting article.  I'm struggling with the statement about 15 metre deep foundations, though - the masts are no more than 10 metres high, and I reckon the longest piles I've seen are about 5 metres.

It says "up to 15 metres" and they may be the exception - I can imagine them on very soft ground or on the top of high embankments having to go right down - for example those between Chippenham and Thingley Junction.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on April 29, 2019, 08:18:16 pm
Goring Gap issues not to be resolved (too long to quote here):
https://www.henleystandard.co.uk/news/goring/138707/campaigners-lose-fight-to-replace-ugly-rail-gantries.html


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Lee on April 29, 2019, 09:08:13 pm
If Network Rail are that keen to mitigate an act of electrification vandalism, then they could always pledge £3.75 million towards the cost of Pilning Westgate...


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: MVR S&T on April 29, 2019, 09:47:28 pm
That much might buy the nameboards, with all the asoicated planning, meetings about the typeface, who should run it etc.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Celestial on April 29, 2019, 09:55:16 pm
Goring Gap issues not to be resolved (too long to quote here):
https://www.henleystandard.co.uk/news/goring/138707/campaigners-lose-fight-to-replace-ugly-rail-gantries.html

The press is a little late picking this up. I reported this here a fortnight ago, though it didn't seem to trigger any interest from anyone.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Lee on April 29, 2019, 10:20:25 pm
You did indeed:

I see that the residents of Goring have effectively lost their battle to get any changes to the electrification in the area.  Network Rail will plant a few trees instead (and probably chop them down in a few years to prevent too many leaves falling on the line).


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on April 30, 2019, 07:44:58 am
If Network Rail are that keen to mitigate an act of electrification vandalism, then they could always pledge £3.75 million towards the cost of Pilning Westgate...

You did indeed:

I see that the residents of Goring have effectively lost their battle to get any changes to the electrification in the area.  Network Rail will plant a few trees instead (and probably chop them down in a few years to prevent too many leaves falling on the line).

The 'news' to me was the scale of the local funding being invested at Goring when changes to the electrification equipment proved impractical.  Comparing, as Lee was, Goring and Pilning - which could both be considered as "Network Rail vandalism", I have to wonder at the criteria used to decide where to fund mitigation for what may be needed as part of the whole electrification plan, and how those criteria are applied evenly and openly by what is now a public body.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bignosemac on April 30, 2019, 07:59:05 am
The formula for such funding appears to be based on the number and volume of moaners.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on April 30, 2019, 07:59:43 am
That was exactly my reason for posting the link.  I can think of several places that could have used that £3.5 Million to useful effect, and like Grahame I think that NR may have just thrown a sum of money at the Goring residents to try and 'shut them up' (and yes, I know that NR has a duty of care as 'Good Neighbours').


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: eightonedee on April 30, 2019, 10:49:54 pm
In defence of NR, if you read the article the money is largely (£3m out of £3.75m) to be spent in the wider area of the Chilterns and N Wessex Downs AONBs on landscape enhancement. That's quite a substantial area - anywhere from Luton to Devizes, Swindon to Basingstoke or Reading to Aylesbury. If it's like the biodiversity offsetting funds they are distributing, they will struggle to attract grant applications.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on May 29, 2019, 04:50:41 pm
Oddly, on the return 9 car (stopping at Didcot) we went on to diesel for the Didcot restart before reverting to OLE after a few minutes and while in motion. 

That is to ensure that they did not have to slow down to get under the bridge at Steventon. AIUI on the up journey you presumably did slow down as you were on the approach to Didcot. 

Are they still using diesel through or slowing down??

From the Oxford Mail (https://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/17671357.steventon-rail-bridge-demolition-will-go-to-public-hearing)

Quote
A BID to demolish a historic railway bridge in South Oxfordshire will now go to a public hearing.

The government's Planning Inspectorate has announced it will use the meeting to hear petitions from Network Rail over why it wants to knock down Steventon Road bridge as part of its electrification of the Great Western Mainline.

It will also hear submissions from residents who are trying to fight the demolition.

The date of the hearing has not yet been announced.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on May 29, 2019, 04:54:39 pm
Diesel still.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on July 29, 2019, 08:55:38 pm
Wires now up on all lines through Newport, except missing the contact wire on the down main across the river bridge and through platform 3.  Quite a productive weekend possession, it would seem.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on July 30, 2019, 08:25:18 am
I don’t think it’s been posted here, but the electrification ‘switch on’ between Parkway and Cardiff is planned for Christmas, so there will be a short period where the new December timetable (in whatever form it takes) will still be relying on IETs running in diesel mode. 

The difference in diesel and electric mode for that section will probably only amount to a couple of minutes though, so not critical, but will put a little extra pressure on delivering the timetable.

IETs will of course be still using diesel at Steventon, and presumably through the Severn Tunnel, for a while - possibly years - to come.  A good job the order was modified so the all-electric 801s aren’t on the books.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on July 30, 2019, 10:07:58 am

IETs will of course be still using diesel at Steventon, and presumably through the Severn Tunnel, for a while - possibly years - to come.  A good job the order was modified so the all-electric 801s aren’t on the books.

Others may say it's a pity the electrification wasn't done to plan, of course. We are seeing the benefits of the 801 diesel mode though. I can often ride on one from Devon, which was not the plan originally.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on July 30, 2019, 01:01:40 pm
There has been a suggestion in local reports that Network Rail may find a revised speed of 110mph in electric mode acceptable for an IET through Steventon based on new modelling, which could obviate the need to replace the bridge with only a small speed penalty.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on July 30, 2019, 04:48:42 pm
There has been a suggestion in local reports that Network Rail may find a revised speed of 110mph in electric mode acceptable for an IET through Steventon based on new modelling, which could obviate the need to replace the bridge with only a small speed penalty.

Indeed. From the Steventon Parish Council Monthly News: http://www.steventon.info/paramonthly.html

Quote
Network Rail representatives presented an update on Steventon Grade II listed Railway Bridge during Public Participation. They explained that they are currently using new modelling techniques to establish maximum train speeds through Steventon without need to demolish and replace the Railway Bridge.

The Class 800 Intercity Express Train (IET) electro-diesel hybrid train (bi-mode) currently running through Steventon are predicted to be capable of running at 110mph in electric mode that is deemed acceptable to Network Rail.

They are awaiting results for predicted speeds for the Class 387, solely electric trains, they intend to use in order to deliver the London to Cardiff service. A speed in excess of 95mph through Steventon will be deemed acceptable.

Network Rail at the meeting stated that there is an 80% probability that the bridge will not need to be demolished. We await the results of the modelling with some optimism.

One of the GWR insiders who appears to be closely associated with IETs and other traction has posted on WNXX that they expect to be able to run through Steventon on electric at 110mph from September. Back in June I was at Didcot early one morning waiting for the 7:29 to London when I saw 2 x 5-car 1B05 Padd-Swansea come through the station at linespeed on the down main with both pantographs raised (they would normally have been lowered at South Moreton). I did wonder if this was a changeover malfunction or driver error and they would be lowered before Steventon but was told subsequently that this was actually a test.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2019, 03:47:27 pm
A little treat for all you cab video lovers (I know you're out there!), or just those that like to see what changes are made when a route is modernised.

Here is a before-and-after comparison I've done of the GWML Electrification scheme between Reading and Didcot Parkway showing the vast amount of work done over a nine year period to a live railway line.  It's in a similar style to my Cotswold Line redoubling ones from seven years ago (was it really that long ago!).

https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x7fk4ne

I'll hopefully add Paddington to Reading when everything is finished there - where although the electrification has been completed there are numerous platform extensions and station rebuilds ongoing for Crossrail.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chuffed on August 09, 2019, 04:17:57 pm
A pity the  electrified blue bridge over the M4 just east of  Bristol Parkway station, has been disfigured by an extremely offensive reference to Boris Johnson,that would cause great embarrassment to families in cars travelling westwards. I have ho time for the man, but he doen't deserve that!.I have asked Network Rail to clean it off as a matter of urgency.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2019, 05:06:42 pm
May I ask if the 2019 video was IET or HST?

Neither.   ;)  It was a Turbo, to match the 2010 one.  One of the few that still operate on a daily basis.

That meant the acceleration and braking were very similar meaning I didn't have to do as much artificial slowing down or speeding up so that the clips match as closely as possible.  Even then, a signal check near Didcot means the 2010 video runs a little 'funny' from Moreton onwards to try and match everything up.  It was recorded in 50 frames per second to try and minimise any juddering.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Charlie (in Gloucester) on August 09, 2019, 05:07:42 pm
May I ask if the 2019 video was IET or HST?

Neither.   ;)  It was a Turbo, to match the 2010 one. 

That meant the acceleration and braking were very similar meaning I didn't have to do as much artificial slowing down or speeding up so that the clips match as closely as possible.  Even then, a signal check near Didcot means the 2010 video runs a little 'funny' from Moreton onwards to try and match everything up.  It was recorded in 50 frames per second to try and minimise any juddering.

Yes I realised once you started stopping so deleted my comment. Not the biggest fan of turbos but they still remind me of the Thames Valley around the West area..


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: welshman on August 09, 2019, 08:16:38 pm
II, Absolutely fascinating video showing the sheer scale of the electrification project.  Pity all that ironmongery spoils the wide open spaces of the GWML.  A lot of lineside greenery has had to go too.

Splendidly synch-ed as well and informatively captioned. ***** rating.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: bobm on August 09, 2019, 08:29:29 pm
Not sure which I marvel at most - the changes that have been made along the route or the work which went into producing the video!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2019, 11:01:32 pm
Thanks a lot chaps.  I must admit I thought there were times when I'd never get to use the 2010 footage, but now that it's finished it really is good to look back on what used to be there and the amount of work involved just preparing the line for electrification, let alone the electrification itself. 

I will hopefully add Paddington to Reading in a year or so when all works there are complete, then (fingers crossed) Didcot to Oxford in a few years time!

Oh, and it really is known as 'Silly Bridge'!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 09, 2019, 11:41:24 pm
Thanks for the video, II! Only distantly related to electrification, but doesn't Didcot look different with those three towers gone.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on August 09, 2019, 11:47:00 pm
Thanks for the video, II! Only distantly related to electrification, but doesn't Didcot look different with those three towers gone.

Much of the remainder is coming down in the next few weeks I believe?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ray951 on August 10, 2019, 09:08:32 pm
Thanks for the video, II! Only distantly related to electrification, but doesn't Didcot look different with those three towers gone.

Much of the remainder is coming down in the next few weeks I believe?
That is correct, the last 3 cooling towers are being demolished on Sunday 18th August between 6am and 8am. The tall chimney is coming down in the autumn.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 10, 2019, 10:18:12 pm
I'll kind of miss them.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Timmer on August 11, 2019, 08:34:43 am
I'll kind of miss them.
Let’s hope the rest of the country doesn’t following last Friday’s power outage. Hopefully that wasn’t a sign of things to come.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on August 11, 2019, 08:38:11 am
I'll kind of miss them.
Let’s hope the rest of the country doesn’t following last Friday’s power outage. Hopefully that wasn’t a sign of things to come.

They are not much use without the rest of the (coal fired) power station


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on August 11, 2019, 08:43:06 am
I'll kind of miss them.
Let’s hope the rest of the country doesn’t following last Friday’s power outage. Hopefully that wasn’t a sign of things to come.
They are not much use without the rest of the (coal fired) power station

When I used to work near Didcot I (once) went into their Tourist Information Centre ... and their most sold postcard was the one showing the cooling towers.  Just think how their demolition will impact tourism ... perhaps they should have been listed?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on August 11, 2019, 10:16:27 am
In case anyone is interested, the to be cleared site has planning permission for a mixed development - the far side being warehouse / distribution, the middle shops, hotel & associated restaurant, and 400 houses. A new main road will run through the centre, intended to at some time be connected with the Science Bridge flying over the railway. Mind you with the site having been an ordnance depot before a power station I do wonder if there is anything lurking underground unknown.

Nearly all of the site isn't actually in Didcot, but in Sutton Courtenay parish, who were the ones most strongly opposed. English Heritage declined to list it on the grounds that there were better examples elsewhere, so others might be lumbered with a redundant cooling tower for evermore in the future I suppose.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on August 11, 2019, 01:38:47 pm
Redundant, yes, but no more so than a medieval castle. Their graceful shape is, in my opinion, worth preserving somewhere, though looks best from a distance. The towers at Didcot did function as a place marker both on the railway and more dramatically when seen from high on the Berkshire Downs. But perhaps we're wandering into another thread. (http://www.firstgreatwestern.info/coffeeshop/index.php?topic=22030.0)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on August 11, 2019, 05:21:22 pm
Quote
When I used to work near Didcot I (once) went into their Tourist Information Centre ... and their most sold postcard was the one showing the cooling towers.

They were also a great aid to visual navigation when I used to fly in the local area. Could be seen from 30-40 miles away in all directions when visibility was good.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on August 12, 2019, 04:11:18 pm
I'll kind of miss them.
Let’s hope the rest of the country doesn’t following last Friday’s power outage. Hopefully that wasn’t a sign of things to come.

I fear that last Fridays outage may well be a sign of things to come. Not very frequent but more often than in past. It is over ten years since the last similar failure. But I bet that the NEXT similar failure will be in a lot less than ten years.

The growth in wind and solar power is most welcome from an environmental point of view, but is a backward step as regards grid stability and reliability.
For this and other reasons I have long felt that all new electric trains should have a battery or diesel engine for failures.
Whilst I don't think much of IETs, a great merit of the electric versions is the single diesel engine.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on August 12, 2019, 08:29:46 pm
There is also the question of why a whole class of emus seemed to have a problem re-starting after the power came back on again.  Fitting trains with a backup battery or diesel engine might not help if they shut down and need a technician to come a couple of hours later to persuade them to work again.  I think there was a suggestion that it was the drop in AC frequency that tripped the trains' systems out?

National Grid were saying that they need to consider carefully about what to disconnect to minimise disruption - but when a main railway line presents such a variable and asymmetric load on the grid, is it not one of the first they would choose to shed when trying to stabilise the supply?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on August 12, 2019, 09:07:31 pm
AFAIK it was the new Thameslink EMUs that could not be re-started after the failure without an engineer.
Some reports suggest that these units trip out on low line frequency so as to prevent the potential generation of harmonics that might interfere with the signalling.
The traction package was probably only tested over a narrow range of line frequency, and then someone decided that "you cant have too much safety" and that everything should stop if the line frequency was outside of the limit.

Although other electric trains work without this feature, it might be a struggle to convince the health and safety industry that this "safety feature" can be removed.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on August 12, 2019, 09:31:20 pm
They were also a great aid to visual navigation when I used to fly in the local area. Could be seen from 30-40 miles away in all directions when visibility was good.

For me as well. It was particularly useful because of everything around it that needed special treatment by the private pilot, such as RAF Lyneham and Benson, Harwell nuclear research facility, now no longer prohibited airspace, and the run into the airspace minefield that is London. Some landmarks don't look so big from the air - flying to Dunkeswell for the first time, my instructor told me to turn south over the Wellington monument, and I was 7 or 8 minutes away, but I never saw the monument, relying on the turning triangle for the WSR to check position. As TC says, though, the Didcot towers were a very easy spot on a clear day, certainly from 2500 feet, east of Bath.

Decontamination will be a big job. The small purifier house at the old Canons marsh gas works in Bristol took ages - but that was Bristol. Even given the closer proximity to London, it won't be a quick job to start building on a former power station AND ordnance factory.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on August 12, 2019, 09:40:58 pm
Decontamination will be a big job. The small purifier house at the old Canons marsh gas works in Bristol took ages - but that was Bristol. Even given the closer proximity to London, it won't be a quick job to start building on a former power station AND ordnance factory.

I am not sure, gas works sites are renowned for being some of the most contaminated around.  When it was used for car storage you may have noticed that not many weeds grew on the old Acton Gas Works site!


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on August 12, 2019, 09:50:18 pm
Decontamination will be a big job. The small purifier house at the old Canons marsh gas works in Bristol took ages - but that was Bristol. Even given the closer proximity to London, it won't be a quick job to start building on a former power station AND ordnance factory.

I am not sure, gas works sites are renowned for being some of the most contaminated around.  When it was used for car storage you may have noticed that not many weeds grew on the old Acton Gas Works site!

Reading up, I see your point now. The towers themselves were used only for cooling excess hot water, so shouldn't be so bad. I should think remediation, to use the posh term, is still likely to be a big job, though, given our modern standards.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: didcotdean on August 12, 2019, 10:02:45 pm
It was an ordnance depot rather than a factory, although I speculated earlier that you can never be sure what is on a brown field site. Having used the overlay facility of old and modern maps at the National Library of Scotland shows that actually quite a bit of the power station site earlier was not built on but was a recreation ground. There were several ranks of buildings on the southern edge each flanked by railway sidings on both sides, ultimately connected to the West Curve.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Thatcham Crossing on August 13, 2019, 08:14:16 am
Quote
It was an ordnance depot rather than a factory

....as was the depot in Thatcham (just west of the Station) that is now a housing estate.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on August 13, 2019, 05:14:53 pm
Decontamination will be a big job. The small purifier house at the old Canons marsh gas works in Bristol took ages - but that was Bristol. Even given the closer proximity to London, it won't be a quick job to start building on a former power station AND ordnance factory.

I am not sure, gas works sites are renowned for being some of the most contaminated around.  When it was used for car storage you may have noticed that not many weeds grew on the old Acton Gas Works site!

Reading up, I see your point now. The towers themselves were used only for cooling excess hot water, so shouldn't be so bad. I should think remediation, to use the posh term, is still likely to be a big job, though, given our modern standards.

Don't forget there was a vast quantity of coal used and stored on the site, plus all the ash all of which needs decontamination.

The towers would become a liability, I doubt future owners of the site, local authorities, English Heritage would want take them on and the current own has no business case to continue with the lability


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: DidcotPunter on August 30, 2019, 11:47:46 am
Reported elsewhere that from September 15th IETs will be able to pass through Steventon on electric at a limit of 110mph so will no longer need to switch to diesel at Didcot or Wantage Road. Not sure if 387s to/from Swindon will still be limited to 60mph.

Apparently Network Rail plan to lower the wire height over Stocks Lane crossing and will impose a height restriction on the road which will allow full 125mph running some time next year.

Reading the minutes of Steventon Parish Council on their meeting with Network Rail it appears unlikely that the High Street bridge will now need to be demolished.

(I do wonder why all this wasn't worked out years ago!)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on August 31, 2019, 07:10:08 am
Reported elsewhere that from September 15th IETs will be able to pass through Steventon on electric at a limit of 110mph so will no longer need to switch to diesel at Didcot or Wantage Road. Not sure if 387s to/from Swindon will still be limited to 60mph.

Apparently Network Rail plan to lower the wire height over Stocks Lane crossing and will impose a height restriction on the road which will allow full 125mph running some time next year.

Reading the minutes of Steventon Parish Council on their meeting with Network Rail it appears unlikely that the High Street bridge will now need to be demolished.

(I do wonder why all this wasn't worked out years ago!)

The directive from the DfT was for the electrification to be fully TSI compliant for 140 mph running and reduced level of maintenance compared to Mk3.

This posed a problem at Steventon a low road over bridge closely followed by the 2 level crossing the wire heights did not work out the solution driven by the above was to replace the bridge.  It has taken the project team a lot of testing, design changes and I suspect many long meetings with DfT to convince them to compromise on their original spec


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Oxonhutch on September 01, 2019, 02:09:44 pm
I will be interested to see how they will enforce the vehicle height restriction.  A wire-strike or flash-over with 25kV OHL is somewhat more serious than a simple bridge strike.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on September 01, 2019, 02:46:36 pm
I will be interested to see how they will enforce the vehicle height restriction.  A wire-strike or flash-over with 25kV OHL is somewhat more serious than a simple bridge strike.

According to the ORR's "Level Crossings: A guide for managers, designers and operators", you do this (https://orr.gov.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0016/2158/level_crossings_guidance.pdf#page=61):

Quote
Related to electrified lines

2.305 Where the railway is electrified with overhead conductors, signs to Diagram 779 should be provided with an appropriate plate (Diagram 780A). At user worked crossings, suitable signs warning of the danger from bare electrical conductors such as ‘Danger, overhead live wires’ should be provided and face towards the user approaching the decision point.

2.306 Overhead conductors at level crossings should be at the greatest height practicable. Signs to Diagram 780A should show a safe height which allows for suitable safe clearance under the overhead conductors.

2.307 Where currently overhead conductors at level crossings are not at maximum practicable height, steps should be taken to remedy this situation, so far as is reasonably practicable. In the interim, signs to Diagrams 779 and 780A should be provided at the last available alternative route before the crossing.

2.308 At any crossing where, currently, overhead conductors are not at the maximum practicable height, a height gauge to Diagram 781 should be erected at the ‘safe height’. Signs to Diagram 780.2A should show a safe height which allows for suitable safe clearance under the overhead conductors. At user worked crossings suitable warning signs should be displayed.

2.309 In calculating the ‘safe height’, allowance should be made for the effect of the vertical profile of the carriageway on a road vehicle and its load.

2.310 At crossings where the gradient of the approaches is such that vehicles with large overhangs or conveying a large overhanging load could touch or come dangerously close to the overhead line equipment, even though they are lower than the ‘safe height’ shown on the sign to Diagram 780A or 780.2A, an additional sign depicting the hazard, such as ‘Danger, overhanging load may foul live wires’ should also be provided.
(I'm sure you can guess what the signs referred to are. )

Now, is blowing up that bridge suddenly at night when no-one is expecting it "reasonably practicable"?

But anyway, I'd prefer to see a chunky steel portal.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on September 01, 2019, 03:39:07 pm
The Bath problem (and a few other similar places).  Now, after the end of October, when we can choose to no longer comply with TSIs (well, isn't that what B****T is supposed to be about) how about this: Yesterday I was travelling under/looking at the tramway style of 25kV electrification leading into the Depot at Soho in Birmingham.  It appears to use a single wire (so not actually catenary) and simple MK1 structures (quite slim and unobtrusive).  If view of the low speeds and the fact most trains stop at Bath, why not use it there?  Now where is ET when you need him ;)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on September 01, 2019, 09:43:45 pm
The Bath problem (and a few other similar places).  Now, after the end of October, when we can choose to no longer comply with TSIs (well, isn't that what B****T is supposed to be about) how about this: Yesterday I was travelling under/looking at the tramway style of 25kV electrification leading into the Depot at Soho in Birmingham.  It appears to use a single wire (so not actually catenary) and simple MK1 structures (quite slim and unobtrusive).  If view of the low speeds and the fact most trains stop at Bath, why not use it there?  Now where is ET when you need him ;)

Does https://twitter.com/25kV/ (https://twitter.com/25kV/) ever visit here? Quite literally wrote the book on OHLE.

But if you look at this pic from Durham you can see that it's certainly possible to have something very visually unobtrusive without resorting to extreme measures. 

(https://i2-prod.chroniclelive.co.uk/incoming/article15946172.ece/ALTERNATES/s615/0_HSR_NEC_310816tRAIN_05JPG.jpg)



 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: IndustryInsider on September 02, 2019, 10:07:02 am
But if you look at this pic from Durham you can see that it's certainly possible to have something very visually unobtrusive without resorting to extreme measures.

As long as you don’t mind it all getting blown down when the wind picks up...  ;)


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on September 03, 2019, 09:31:06 am
But if you look at this pic from Durham you can see that it's certainly possible to have something very visually unobtrusive without resorting to extreme measures.

As long as you don’t mind it all getting blown down when the wind picks up...  ;)

But these are portals not headspans, surely, so not even the big bad wolf could blow them down.

Conservation usually promotes good, neat, well proportioned modern design, as here.

IMHO the Steventon bridge problem has nothing to do with historic conservation other than  mis-using the legislation.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on September 07, 2019, 09:31:19 am

On another website it is reported that the speed limit through Steventon will be raised to 110mph from 0930 Sunday 15 September (including the 387's).

I imagine that when the bridge has finally to be rebuilt it may be at the expense of the triumphant Council Tax payers of the District, not NR.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on September 07, 2019, 10:58:33 am

On another website it is reported that the speed limit through Steventon will be raised to 110mph from 0930 Sunday 15 September (including the 387's).

I imagine that when the bridge has finally to be rebuilt it may be at the expense of the triumphant Council Tax payers of the District, not NR.

OTC

No it is railway bridge and unless it is rebuilt as part of a road improvement scheme it will remain down to NR. Even then, the highway authority would probably require a contribution from NR for betterment. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on September 11, 2019, 06:58:25 am
The Bath problem (and a few other similar places).  Now, after the end of October, when we can choose to no longer comply with TSIs (well, isn't that what B****T is supposed to be about) how about this: Yesterday I was travelling under/looking at the tramway style of 25kV electrification leading into the Depot at Soho in Birmingham.  It appears to use a single wire (so not actually catenary) and simple MK1 structures (quite slim and unobtrusive).  If view of the low speeds and the fact most trains stop at Bath, why not use it there?  Now where is ET when you need him ;)

The "trolley wire" systems used in depots are designed for a max lines speed of 15 or so mph and relatively low traffic and power densities.

I believe on of the issues at Bath is to do with the position of the Pan on the class 80X trains over the passenger door.  There is also the unresolved aesthetics objections through Bath, all of which made it easy for DfT to pull the plug.

It has been stated by the DfT, ORR and RSSB that the UK will continue to comply with TSI's post B-----t certainly for the foreseeable future they are part of the "great repeal Bill"


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Noggin on September 12, 2019, 11:19:01 am
The Bath problem (and a few other similar places).  Now, after the end of October, when we can choose to no longer comply with TSIs (well, isn't that what B****T is supposed to be about) how about this: Yesterday I was travelling under/looking at the tramway style of 25kV electrification leading into the Depot at Soho in Birmingham.  It appears to use a single wire (so not actually catenary) and simple MK1 structures (quite slim and unobtrusive).  If view of the low speeds and the fact most trains stop at Bath, why not use it there?  Now where is ET when you need him ;)

The "trolley wire" systems used in depots are designed for a max lines speed of 15 or so mph and relatively low traffic and power densities.

I believe on of the issues at Bath is to do with the position of the Pan on the class 80X trains over the passenger door.  There is also the unresolved aesthetics objections through Bath, all of which made it easy for DfT to pull the plug.

It has been stated by the DfT, ORR and RSSB that the UK will continue to comply with TSI's post B-----t certainly for the foreseeable future they are part of the "great repeal Bill"

Could you explain why the position of the pan would be a problem in Bath and is not, say a problem in Didcot or another station with similar canopies?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ray951 on September 15, 2019, 07:12:13 pm
Good to see IET trains running through Didcot with pantographs up today. I believe it is 3 years since the first electric trains ran to Didcot, so better late than never.
Now let's finish the electrification to Oxford.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on September 15, 2019, 08:33:35 pm
Could you explain why the position of the pan would be a problem in Bath and is not, say a problem in Didcot or another station with similar canopies?
Wasn’t the problem electrical clearance between pantograph horns and listed canopies, so they solved it by building the platforms out a couple of years ago?

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ray951 on September 15, 2019, 08:45:57 pm
Problem was a road bridge at Steventon a few miles west of Didcot, as mentioned earlier NR have found a way to run IET trains at 110mph on electric through the bridge, this started today.
Before today most IETs going through Didcot were on diesel power, now all IETs except those going to/from Oxford can be on electric power.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on September 16, 2019, 09:16:50 am
Could you explain why the position of the pan would be a problem in Bath and is not, say a problem in Didcot or another station with similar canopies?
Wasn’t the problem electrical clearance between pantograph horns and listed canopies, so they solved it by building the platforms out a couple of years ago?

Paul
It was caused or partly caused by the curvature of the platforms IIRC.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on September 16, 2019, 09:31:04 am
I'm hearing that the knitting has gone live from Patchway through Pilning and the Severn Tunnel,,not in service as of yet but undergoing testing .


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on September 16, 2019, 10:46:11 am
I'm hearing that the knitting has gone live from Patchway through Pilning and the Severn Tunnel,,not in service as of yet but undergoing testing .

...all the way to St Bride's ATFS at 162m01c if railuk forum tells us true.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: REVUpminster on September 18, 2019, 10:55:06 am
Experts needed:

Down here in the South West there is talk in the long run of wiring between Newton Abbot-Plymouth to assist going over the Devon banks and generally speed up the service.

Now this is what I want to know; the wheels of the train are driven by electric motors and when no wires diesel engines provide the electricity. So when using diesel engines is there less power available or some other reason or have I got it wrong completely?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on September 18, 2019, 04:51:00 pm
No you're not wrong, the engines when running provide an amount of power to the generators this is used to drive the wheels as well as all the on board lights air con etc etc.
When running on the Mains every thing is powered up as before ,only there is more juice available,so speeds can be increased. That is the simple way of looking at ,hopefully of some help.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on September 18, 2019, 10:17:52 pm

Because rolling stock is now built by private contractors rather than BR, the technical details, being commercially sensitive, can be harder to come by.

However, in principle the motor coach of an IEP has a diesel engine of either 560kW or 700kW output. I believe that this is shaft power not alternator output. By the time this has gone through the generation, inverter control, traction motor and hotel power systems, at least 20% will be lost, giving power at rail of no more than 450/560kW. When using the 25kV overhead supply, the four traction motors, each of 226kW continuous maximum rating (CMR) can deliver 904kW at rail, nearly double. Short term ratings for traction motors can also be 50% higher, if used.

Diesels can perform reasonably on flat terrain, with few stops, where speed potential is low and traffic is light.

This demonstrates the partial fallacy in DfT statements that diesel bi-modes can deliver the same for the passenger as full electric traction. Electric trains have a capital cost of just over half of diesel trains (Roger Ford) and have energy and maintenance costs equally lower. Their higher reliability means fewer are needed. Certainly more of our GWR (let alone the MML etc) justifies wiring, if only NR could get its corporate head round it.

Others may know better

OTC



Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on September 22, 2019, 04:17:19 pm
Experts needed:

Down here in the South West there is talk in the long run of wiring between Newton Abbot-Plymouth to assist going over the Devon banks and generally speed up the service.

Now this is what I want to know; the wheels of the train are driven by electric motors and when no wires diesel engines provide the electricity. So when using diesel engines is there less power available or some other reason or have I got it wrong completely?

For Diesel to provide the same power as 25kV electric traction they would need to be large of large number of them.  300 Amps from the OLE is 7.5MW that means you would need 10 750kW alternators on the train which means each engine would need to be over 1MW output.

300 Amps is not an usual peak starting current for intercity type trains


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: TonyK on September 22, 2019, 04:57:00 pm
300 Amps is not an usual peak starting current for intercity type trains

7.5 MW is a lot to ask of diesel engines, especially when it is needed only for a burst to overcome inertia. There are two ways of looking at the effect of having bi-mode IEPs, though. One could say that they are a blessing, because they allow IEPs to penetrate further into the uncharted wilderness that lies outside of the M25. Or one could say that they are an excuse for not finishing the job of electrifying the GWR completely, and therefore kicking the can down the road yet again. As for blaming Network Rail - I am sure they would have been happy to finish the job, had DafT let them.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Electric train on September 24, 2019, 06:38:34 pm
300 Amps is not an usual peak starting current for intercity type trains

7.5 MW is a lot to ask of diesel engines, especially when it is needed only for a burst to overcome inertia. There are two ways of looking at the effect of having bi-mode IEPs, though. One could say that they are a blessing, because they allow IEPs to penetrate further into the uncharted wilderness that lies outside of the M25. Or one could say that they are an excuse for not finishing the job of electrifying the GWR completely, and therefore kicking the can down the road yet again. As for blaming Network Rail - I am sure they would have been happy to finish the job, had DafT let them.

I agree that a rolling stock based diesel will unlikely be viable to produce 7.5MW  This is the advantage of electrification via fixed equipment (OLE / third rail etc)  750V dc is typically limited to 6kA (4.5MW) the dc circuit breakers are typically set to 4 or 6kA a few places they are set to 7kA.  Rolling stock is also programmed to the max for the route even in multiple the overall will not exceed the route max.  The same is done for most ac traction a max current is set for the route, there are some issues with multiple loco's on some freight services where they the FoC has not set the current limit this cause the substation circuit breakers to trip or worse case the wire burns down.

Back to the point, electrification will always provide a quicker acceleration that diesel; the IEP's were originally intended to provide some capability to operate off wired routes, allow for diversions, operate a service when the OLE is not powered and emergency moves; like all things there has been mission creep


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on October 26, 2019, 08:31:39 pm
It would appear from info elsewhere that the 25kv was switched on in the Severn Tunnel earlier today.  Under test for a period.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: johnneyw on October 27, 2019, 10:44:58 am
It would appear from info elsewhere that the 25kv was switched on in the Severn Tunnel earlier today.  Under test for a period.

So where are things regarding the previous reports of the corrosion of OHLE in the tunnel?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 27, 2019, 11:09:27 am
It would appear from info elsewhere that the 25kv was switched on in the Severn Tunnel earlier today.  Under test for a period.

So where are things regarding the previous reports of the corrosion of OHLE in the tunnel?

"Corrosion" may not be accurate.   According to top ponchos at GWR and Network Rail, the problem was a deposit of unidentified 'summat' on the insulators - with the 'summat' being conductive.  If the research we were told about quickly identified the 'summat' (and, really, how long should it take?) then cleaning it off and taking steps either to clean regularly of stop it coming back is going to be a darned site quicker / easier / cheaper than replacing something that's corroded.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 27, 2019, 11:50:54 am
   According to top ponchos at GWR and Network Rail...

Waterproof ponchos are , of course, essential PPE for any work in the tunnel - and inspecting or cleaning anything overhead calls for a top poncho as well.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: chuffed on October 27, 2019, 02:09:43 pm
I thought the reference to 'top poncho' was as, in 'covering up' ;D


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Chris125 on October 27, 2019, 08:25:19 pm
So where are things regarding the previous reports of the corrosion of OHLE in the tunnel?

F&F's Noel Dolphin has tweeted the following about the wires being switched-on, and what they did to allow this: https://twitter.com/NoelDolphin


"Severn Tunnel is currently live & electrified at 25kv for the first time. For testing in the run up to full switch on later this year"

"Mainly by removing copper contact wire and using aluminium contact wire. Also fixing some of the leaking drip pans after years of arguing internally in NR."

"Never going to be perfect in those conditions. Will always need more maintenance - as it is almost 100% humidity, permanently in some places. However, most corrosion issues minimised now (would not at this point want to say overcome)"


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on October 27, 2019, 10:03:10 pm
Interesting stuff.  Not wishing to digress but this relevant comment elsewhere got to me a bit as I worked in the box there once and remember it going up.......

Quote
Also, a moments silence though for whichever genius designed the termination of the electrification wires at St Pancras in the... 80s???

It's more or less forgotten and I can't even find a photo of it.

....and this one from Roger Ford cheered me up afterwards.....

Quote
In Scotland they spell Decarbonisation as E-L-E-C-T-R-I-F-Y.  So should we all.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Adrian on October 28, 2019, 08:04:38 pm
So where are things regarding the previous reports of the corrosion of OHLE in the tunnel?

F&F's Noel Dolphin has tweeted the following about the wires being switched-on, and what they did to allow this: https://twitter.com/NoelDolphin


"Severn Tunnel is currently live & electrified at 25kv for the first time. For testing in the run up to full switch on later this year"

"Mainly by removing copper contact wire and using aluminium contact wire. Also fixing some of the leaking drip pans after years of arguing internally in NR."

"Never going to be perfect in those conditions. Will always need more maintenance - as it is almost 100% humidity, permanently in some places. However, most corrosion issues minimised now (would not at this point want to say overcome)"


I thought the Severn Tunnel had something more like a rigid metal bar than a normal contact wire?

Is the idea of using aluminium instead of copper that it's a more reactive metal than steel, and therefore it is the aluminium which will preferentially corrode?  Which I suppose is better if the corrosion is not then be concentrated at the point where the OHLE is fixed to the tunnel.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 28, 2019, 10:26:53 pm
I thought the Severn Tunnel had something more like a rigid metal bar than a normal contact wire?

Is the idea of using aluminium instead of copper that it's a more reactive metal than steel, and therefore it is the aluminium which will preferentially corrode?  Which I suppose is better if the corrosion is not then be concentrated at the point where the OHLE is fixed to the tunnel.

In the F+F ROCS system (which I presume is what's been used), the actual contact with the pantograph is made by a wire. This is clamped in the base of the rigid "rail" - actually a hollow aluminum section. That can be replaced when it wears, like any other contact wire. It also provides for the transition to the standard suspended OLE.

For "damp" sites, they offer plastic covers for the rail and a special grease to waterproof the copper wire/rail contact and prevent corrosion. It seems that the Severn Tunnel is wetter and nastier than that level of "damp". Using aluminum wire will remove the electrochemical corrosion (due to potential differences between dissimilar metals) - how completely will no doubt depend on the alloy used.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: MVR S&T on October 28, 2019, 10:51:28 pm
Could stainless steel/plastics not be used? I have had lots of problem with Aluminium alloys in damp eletrical boxes.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: ellendune on October 28, 2019, 10:56:54 pm
Could stainless steel/plastics not be used? I have had lots of problem with Aluminium alloys in damp eletrical boxes.

If I have understood correctly it is the conductor wire that has been changed.  Stainless steel is a poor conductor compared to copper or aluminium so could not be used for the conductor wire. Aluminium is a very good conductor. 


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on October 29, 2019, 02:40:31 pm

Aluminium and its alloys have an unusual behaviour in corrosion.

It has a low hydrogen electrode potential and a heat of combustion about 30% higher than sodium metal (which catches fire in water - pinching the oxygen from the hydrogen!). However it is so reactive that it coats itself immediately with a layer of impervious Aluminuim oxide - called a passive film. Thus Aluminium (Al) panels do not need painting, unless the film is damaged and interrupted such as by scratching or more likely by chemicals such as the chloride ion in saline environments. Thus marine Al rapidly turns to white powder.

We shall see whether the metal survives but tunnels are severe environments for most metals - Merseyrail has had many problems just with steel track, albeit sharply curved. The Seven Tunnel will become a lot cleaner and the heavy gradients better addressed if the OLE works well.

Fingers crossed.

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: CyclingSid on October 29, 2019, 06:28:48 pm
Aluminium has a higher resistance than copper. Hopefully nothing more than the fact that the electricity meter will turn more for each train.

Worked for a company who made electrical furnances and the like, hundreds of volts and hundreds of amps. Some bright spark (pun intended) in purchasing thought it a good deal to get some cheap cable, which happened to be aluminium. All sorts of problems ensued, especially for the person in purchasing.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: stuving on October 29, 2019, 06:45:13 pm
Aluminium has a higher resistance than copper. Hopefully nothing more than the fact that the electricity meter will turn more for each train.

Not an issue. The rail sections are joined so it acts as a conductor too, and its cross-sectional area is much greater than the conductor wire itself (2100 vs 100-161 mm2). So the OLE through the tunnel has a very low resistance - which should mean that no feed is needed inside the tunnel, too.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: broadgage on October 29, 2019, 07:24:45 pm
Indeed, the wire used in this rigid overhead supply system is not comparable to the overhead wire in a catenary system.
It is more akin to a "wearing strip" with the majority of the current being conducted for most of the distance by the conductor bar system to which the wire is fixed.

Despite this, aluminium is not ideal for a sliding contact system. Aluminium forms an oxide layer on exposure to the air, this oxide is electrically insulating. 25 Kv readily breaks down this oxide, but the contact is still inferior to that provided by copper, with more sparking and more heat produced.
The thin film of oxide that is removed by each pass of a pantograph is also very abrasive and I would expect more rapid wear of the contact strip on the pantograph to result.

Experts have obviously considered these drawbacks to be a price worth paying in view of the problems experienced with copper contact wire in the tunnel.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 30, 2019, 09:08:04 pm
A general question about electrification of locomotives/rolling stock across the UK: I've just read that "only 42% of track in the UK is electrified and 29% of Britain’s current fleet is run solely on diesel fuel." Here. (https://theconversation.com/decarbonising-britains-railways-demands-urgent-action-heres-how-it-could-be-done-124905) This implies that 71% of Britain's rail fleet is either pure electric or hybrid (and I'd imagine a tiny percentage being batteries or experimental technologies like hydrogen). That seems a surprisingly high percentage to me given that only 42% of track is electrified, even allowing for that presumably being the busiest track.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: paul7755 on October 30, 2019, 10:07:25 pm
A general question about electrification of locomotives/rolling stock across the UK: I've just read that "only 42% of track in the UK is electrified and 29% of Britain’s current fleet is run solely on diesel fuel." Here. (https://theconversation.com/decarbonising-britains-railways-demands-urgent-action-heres-how-it-could-be-done-124905) This implies that 71% of Britain's rail fleet is either pure electric or hybrid (and I'd imagine a tiny percentage being batteries or experimental technologies like hydrogen). That seems a surprisingly high percentage to me given that only 42% of track is electrified, even allowing for that presumably being the busiest track.

If the fleet is broken down by individual vehicle or coach numbers I expect the average DMU is about just over 2 cars long, and the average EMU is somewhat over 4 cars long.  That alone probably skews the numbers.

Paul


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on October 31, 2019, 07:47:28 am
If the fleet is broken down by individual vehicle or coach numbers I expect the average DMU is about just over 2 cars long, and the average EMU is somewhat over 4 cars long.  That alone probably skews the numbers.

Indeed.  Further, there are some thin strings of track with sparse/poor service ... Inverness to Wick and Thurso, Dingwall to Kyle of Lochalsh, Craigendoran to Mallaig, Crainlarich to Oban, Chippenham to Trowbridge, Ayr to Stranraer, Dovey Junction to Pwhelli, Llanelli to Craven Arms.   And still a number of secondary and freight lines - none especially long these days, but that all add up, accounting for track mileage but (I wonder) perhaps not "fleet" if you count passenger vehicles.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Bmblbzzz on October 31, 2019, 11:29:41 am
Thanks. I hadn't thought about counting each car individually.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: onthecushions on November 10, 2019, 02:48:20 pm

Looks like there were four electrically hauled return workings through the 7 tunnel last night, 3Z33/40, running between Patchway and Long Dyke - presumably pan down at Newport.

Any further news?

OTC


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on November 10, 2019, 03:55:51 pm
Also testing of the bidirectional running on the up through Pilning.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: grahame on November 10, 2019, 04:30:50 pm
Also testing of the bidirectional running on the up through Pilning.

I get my ups and downs mixed up.  That's testing that trains can run from the Bristol direction on the line that has the operational platform, right?


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: Western Pathfinder on November 10, 2019, 06:53:56 pm
Also testing of the bidirectional running on the up through Pilning.

I get my ups and downs mixed up.  That's testing that trains can run from the Bristol direction on the line that has the operational platform, right?
Spot on Grahame.


Title: Re: Great Western Main Line electrification - ongoing discussion
Post by: SandTEngineer on November 19, 2019, 06:13:10 pm
Reported elsewhere that the Severn Tunnel won't be ready for general electric use on 12 December 2019 as planned.  Likely to be late January 2020.  So diesel west of Pilning for now....... ::)



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