Russian nitrogen fertilizer giant Togliattiazot (TOAZ) on Thursday announced the delivery of 150 new generation hopper cars to transport prilled urea to domestic agricultural and industrial users.

TOAZ purchased 200 hopper cars from the United Wagon Company earlier this year, with the wagons featuring a carrying capacity of 76 tonnes, six tonnes greater than their predecessors.

Another 50 wagons will arrive at the plant in the near future, with the ammonia and urea producer noting they will have service life of 32 years, with the possibility of maintenance-free use for eight years or 1m km.

Additional advantages are the treatment of the body with a special two-component coating to protect against the effects of the cargo, and the use of adaptors for easy replacement of loading hatches.

“Updating the logistics infrastructure for TOAZ is as important as upgrading the main production facilities,” said Dmitry Mezheedov, director general of TOAZ.

“The increased carrying capacity and reduction in the frequency of repairs of new cars will significantly optimise the transportation of fertilizers from a financial and logistical point of view.”

TOAZ, which can produce 3m tonnes/year of ammonia and 960,000 tonnes/year of urea, has over 1,800 units of its own rolling stock, as well as nearly 50 km of railway tracks, 88 turnouts, 32 railway crossings, three bridges and overpasses.

The manufacturer pumps around 160,000 tonnes/month of liquid ammonia to the Black Sea port of Yuzhny via a lengthy pipeline for export to buyers east and west of Suez.

Togliattiazot is Russia's biggest ammonia producer, according to its company website.