Research and production corporation “United Wagon Company” (“UWC”, the “Group” or the “Company”) (MOEX: UWGN), Russia’s largest manufacturer of freight cars1, has obtained RC FRT (Register of Certification on the Federal Railway Transport) certification for a six-axle articulated tank car running on 25 t axle load bogies for the transportation of light oil products. To date, this is the sixth certified multi-axle model in the portfolio of the Company for use on the 1,520-mm rail track gauge, following an LPG tank car, as well as gondola cars and hopper cars for grain and mineral fertilizers.
The model 15-629 six-axle articulated tank car is a unique model within the 1,520-mm rail track gauge area. The design features of the tank car allow for the most efficient possible use of the car’s loading capacity when transporting light oil products with a density of up to 0.84 t/m3, thus solving the problem of underloading when standard four-axle cars are used. At present, the transportation of light oil products by Russia’s current tank fleet can show underloading of up to 15% per car, affecting the efficiency of transportation.
The model 15-629 tank car consists of two sections connected by a spherical articulated connector. The total volume of the two tanks stands at 160 m3, and the loading capacity of the car is 108 t. Together, these specifications ensure the transportation of a quantity of cargo similar to that transported by two standard tanks with 100% axle load usage. The use of an articulated design allows for a reduction in the required fleet size and significant savings on freight transportation.
Existing restrictions attributable to the infrastructure of the consignors and consignees were taken into account in the design of the car. The 15-629 tank car’s length over coupler pulling faces is 24,040 mm, while the length of one section is 12,020 mm, which is comparable to the length of a standard four-axle tank. The tank car’s loading and unloading valves and fittings and their placement are coordinated with the spacing of the loading and unloading rack. Thus, the 15-629 tank car can be serviced at standard terminals, including alongside four-axle tank cars. The Tikhvin-produced tank car has a service life of 40 years.
The design of the tanks and their equipment used can withstand pressure 1.7 times higher than that of the tank cars currently being used, allowing for the safe transportation of highly hazardous petroleum products (Packing Group I). The Tikhvin-produced tank car runs on three bogies with an increased axle load of 25 t. The car’s single braking system with separate brakes for each bogie allows for the simultaneous and effective braking of each section of the tank.
The six-axle car is mounted on 18-9855 bogies, which are serviced and repaired in the same manner as those used to equip UWC’s four-axle cars. UWC runs a vast network of service centres responsible for maintenance and repairs of car bogies within the 1,520-mm rail track gauge area. At the end of Q2 2020, the Company’s service centre network comprised a total of 91 centres and consignment storage places keeping spare parts, assemblies and components. The Company regularly holds training sessions for its employees and qualification tests for railcar repair facilities.
It is forecast that the use of the 15-629 articulated tank car will boost export volumes of light oil products significantly, increasing the delivery capacity of the rail network and enabling consignors and operators to see additional economic benefits.
1Data sourced from INFOLine-Analytics: https://infoline.spb.ru/news/?news=203409