Transnet Freight Rail launched the world’s longest production train at their depot in Saldanha Bay, South Africa.
The manganese transporter has 375 wagons and spans four kilometers. Manganese is a key ingredient in making steel, and is exported from South Africa to overseas markets.
This increases the amount of manganese that they are able to move from 19 656 tons to 23 625 tons per train.
According to the SABC, Transnet said the train will help lower the cost of doing business in the country and move traffic off the roads by reducing the number of trucks needed.
This train is dedicated to transporting manganese between the mine in Sishen in the Northern Cape to Saldanha Bay, a distance of 860 kilometres.
Running such a train means that rolling stock, as well as some infrastructure, needed to be upgraded to 30 tons per axle on the section between Hotazel and Sishen.
This train will break the world record also held by Transnet for the longest train, which was a 342 wagon iron ore production train.
The train was tested last year and the Business Times reported that the test saved more than R1 billion.
“This is another breakthrough for the Heavy Haul Railway Industry. Rio Tinto, Australia, recently started with the implementation of driverless trains in their Iron Ore railway system. Transnet has now successfully operationalised the 375 wagon train. The collaboration on technical research and sharing of best practice by Heavy Haul operations worldwide will surely keep pushing the operations, safety and rail capacity to new levels through application of breakthrough technology,” said TFR General Manager Brian Monakali.
Image: Youtube Screenshot