Class 93 tri-modes ordered

Rail Operations (UK) Ltd has signed a framework agreement with Stadler for the supply of 30 Class 93 tri-mode locomotives. An initial batch of 10 locomotives is due for delivery in early 2023.

The Class 93 is a Bo-Bo mixed traffic locomotive based on Stadler’s Class 68 and 88 locomotives. However, it has a higher top speed of 110mph and is able to operate under electric, diesel and battery power. In electric mode, it can run under 25kV AC overhead lines with a power of 4,000kW. The Caterpillar C32 diesel engine will have a nominal power of 900kW and meets EU Stage V emission requirements. Two Lithium Titanate Oxide (LTO) traction battery packs will provide 400kW of extra power to supplement the engine when the locomotive is running in diesel/battery hybrid mode, as well as for last mile carbon-free shunting operation.

Thus far all the Stadler-built ‘68s’ and ‘88s’ in the UK have been bought by Direct Rail Services, albeit some ‘68s’ are sub-leased for use on passenger services. Rail Operations (UK) Ltd has long held an ambition to order the ‘93s’, and confirmation of the order follows investment by STAR Capital, which has acquired a majority stake in the group.

Karl Watts, CEO of ROUK, said: ‘The Class 93 fleet with its array of green credentials, will allow us to lead the way in supporting the rail industry deliver its decarbonisation targets. Furthermore, with its impressive state-of-the-art specification, the Class 93s also allow us to develop new markets and modernise many aspects of UK train operations.’