During a ceremony at the Transnet Rail Engineering (TRE) facility in Koedoespoort, South Africa, Transnet SOC Ltd. and GE South Africa Technologies Limited (GESAT) celebrated the signing of a contract for 43 new Model C30ACi locomotives for South Africa, bringing the total number of GE locomotives ordered to 143 since December 2009.
“The acquisition of these locomotives is part of our fleet renewal program, a key element of our R110 billion, 5-year capital investment program,” said Brian Molefe, CEO of Transnet Group. “Improving the average age of our assets is crucial in our efforts to improve our reliability, efficiency and our ultimate goal of running a scheduled railway.”
“GE is honored to build on its long standing partnership with Transnet with this new order for GE locomotives to South Africa,” said Lorenzo Simonelli, President and CEO of GE Transportation. “These locomotives will
create great opportunities for Transnet, South Africa, and GESAT. Transnet will be able to significantly improve hauling capability while reducing fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. Our partnership also is a significant investment in job development, economic advancement and infrastructure growth on both sides of the Atlantic.”
“GE and GESAT are committed to partnering with South Africa and the entire African continent for growth. We are honored to partner with Transnet in delivering on this new order for GE locomotives to South Africa,” said Jay Ireland, President and CEO for GE in Africa.
Added Ireland: “The improvement and expansion of South Africa’s rail sector is a catalyst for advancing regional integration and the fast and seamless movement of goods. This benefit will increase trade and ensure increased competitiveness of the Southern Africa region as a trading block.”
“The positive impact of this success will be felt way beyond the GESAT venture,” said Paul Nkuna, CEO of the Mineworkers Investment Company, GE’s empowerment partners in the GESAT joint venture. “Benefits include job creation here in South Africa, skills and technology transfer and the renewal and modernization of South Africa’s transport infrastructure at a time when greater balance in road and rail transport capacity has become a national priority.
Improved energy efficiency is another major positive. The team at MIC congratulates everyone associated with today’s announcement. It’s wonderful news.”
GE Transportation will provide locomotive kits for 43 locomotives to GESAT in South Africa. GESAT will work with Transnet Rail Engineering for local assembly. The kits will be manufactured at GE Transportation’s manufacturing plants in Erie and Grove City, Penn., and assembled in South Africa.
In 2011, GE announced investments of more than $200 million in upgrading its manufacturing operations in Northwestern Pennsylvania, including approximately $136 million in new technology, manufacturing improvements and facility upgrades in Erie, and more than $70 million to upgrade its existing diesel engine manufacturing plant and to establish a new remanufacturing plant, both located in Grove City.
The assembly kits for local production will ship in batches starting in the second quarter 2012. The 43 locomotives are scheduled to be delivered by June 2013 and will enter revenue service shortly thereafter.
GE’s Model C3OACi Locomotive Technology Advantage
GE’s Model C3OACi Locomotive is a product of ecomagination, a GE-wide initiative to help meet customer demand for more energy-efficient products. The locomotives will enable customers to haul the same amount of freight with fewer locomotives thereby reducing fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions. GE’s C3OACi are the first locomotives in the South African region to meet stringent UIC2 emissions standards. With GE’s C3OACi locomotives a South African customer can deploy three C3OACi models to haul a load that would require four older locomotives, reducing annual diesel fuel consumption by approximately 600,000 liters under typical operating conditions. It can reduce emissions by 1,500 metric tons of C02 annually, equivalent to eliminating the emissions from 310 cars on South African roads.
GE’s Model C3OACi is first AC diesel-electric locomotive to be introduced to sub-Saharan Africa. Its engine delivers 3,300 Gross Horse Power (GHP) using an electronic fuel injection
system that automatically supplies the exact amount of fuel needed for optimal engine efficiency. The locomotives also feature GE’s unique AC propulsion technology and dynamic braking. The addition of these new locomotives, which will be used to haul freight and coal, will decrease life-cycle costs, improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions.