Union Pacific unveils streamlined railroad car

Published: Thursday, Sep. 5, 2013 - 1:23 pm

Omaha, Neb.-based Union Pacific Railroad, which has significant operations in Roseville, is launching drag-reducing freight train technology not too far removed from the aerodynamic designs used by open-wheel race cars.

It’s called Arrowedge, and it will be showing up this month on UP trains in California.

In simplest terms, Arrowedge resembles a giant version of the pointed nose on the bullet-shaped cars that race annually in the Indianapolis 500. The tapered shape is designed to cut through the air more cleanly, which in turn lessens engine stress and reduces fuel usage.

Arrowedge sits on top of the first intermodal container on a Union Pacific train, just behind the locomotives. Intermodal cars are flat, designed to accept containers that can stacked two-high or placed onto a truck chassis. UP says the Arrowedge placement near the front of a UP freight train enables air to flow more easily around the following double stacks of containers.

“We are excited to see the results of this innovation in action and how it can springboard further research and development,” said Mike Iden, UP’s general director of car and locomotive engineering.

Call The Bee’s Mark Glover, (916) 321-1184.

Read more articles by Mark Glover

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