The first phase of a major upgrade of the Chicago - St Louis corridor through the heart of Illinois is complete. And with work continuing to finish the entire project by 2017, the line is considered a bellwether for future improvements to freight corridors that carry passenger services in the United States, as Kevin Smith and Railway Age managing editor Douglas John Bowen discover.
Bombardier's multi-engined Traxx DE ME was one of the star exhibits at InnoTrans in September, with visitors waiting up to 40 minutes for the chance to see inside this innovative locomotive. With the need for lower emissions and greater fuel economy becoming ever more pressing, Keith Barrow asks whether four engines might be better than one.
The European Railway Wheel Association has published a series of commitments on quality, customer service, and social responsibility. Its outgoing chairman Mr Jean-Pierre Auger (pictured) explains the thinking and objectives of the initiative to David Briginshaw.
Liberalisation of Polish railfreight has arguably been a great success, with open-access operators now controlling almost half of the market. But with high fixed costs and static volumes, the industry still faces fundamental challenges, as Keith Barrow discovers.
BRAZIL's 11 railfreight concessionaires achieved a 1% increase in traffic to 475 million tonnes last year, but this was well below their forecast of 530 million tonnes, according to figures released by Brazil's National Association of Rail Transport (ANTF).
Advances in braking technology are generating substantial savings in operating costs while helping to reduce the environmental impact of trains. Dr Tim Hodges, chief railways engineer at Federal-Mogul, explains how better brakes can benefit the bottom line.
Vossloh Cogifer has developed maintenance-friendly switch machines for use on standard sleepers or in box sleepers, thereby allowing automatic tamping of the trackbed. Their latest application is on two very different railways: a heavy-haul line in northern Sweden and on the recently-completed Ankara - Konya high-speed line in Turkey.