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RM Rail received approval for the 19-1299 and 19-1299-01 aluminium hopper wagons

3 April 2023
Reading time ~ 4 min
Presentation of initial batch of 19-1299-01 hopper wagons in March 2022.
Presentation of initial batch of 19-1299-01 hopper wagons in March 2022. Source: RM Rail
Ivolgina Anna, Editorial Contributor to International Projects, ROLLINGSTOCK Agency
Reading time ~ 4 min
Stolchnev Alexey, Russian Projects Editor, ROLLINGSTOCK Agency

Russia: TR EAEU 001/2011 certification for mass production of these cars was obtained in February and March. The manufacturer claims a number of improvements in technical specifications and consumer properties regarding the 19-1244 hopper of the previous generation.

Thus, the freight load in the new wagon has been increased from 78 to 79 t, body volume has been expanded from 109 to 111 m3, and tare weight has been reduced from 22 to 21 t. As Mikhail Kozlov, an Aluminium Association expert, pointed out this is 3-8 t more than its steel counterparts have, which gives a solid – up to 10% – saving on the total weight of one tonne of bulk cargo. The design of the wagon has also been improved. Thanks to the introduction of a continuous hatch, the new wagon is adapted to all types of loading platforms.

The 19-1299-01 wagon is meant to carry various cargoes, including mineral fertilisers. The design implies a bogie with a 25-t axle load. The 19-1299-01 model is equipped with the 18-194-1 bogie by Uralvagonzavod, while the 19-1299 includes the 18-9891 bogie developed by RM Rail (it was approved for serial production in March, too). The main advantages are provided by the use of aluminium-magnesium-scandium alloy brand 1581 in the hopper body, which was brought to market by Rusal in 2021. It is 35% stronger for the same density (compared to the 1565ch alloy used in 19-1244 hopper) and has high corrosion resistance. The service life of the wagon is 40 years.

RM Rail reported as well that it plans to install telematic sensors in 70 hoppers 19-1299 in 2023. The NPP Ratorm device installed on the axle bearing will collect a range of data: location, mileage, speed, temperature in the axle box, etc. The autonomy of the device is ensured by storing the energy of the bogie’s moving part. According to Sergei Drobzhev, First Deputy CEO of RM Rail, the telematics will reduce the accident rate, switch from planned repairs to maintenance based on actual condition, and minimise labour of inspectors. He says that in case of a series order, the equipment with telematics will minimally increase the cost of the wagon.

The previous generation of the aluminium-bodied hopper, model 19-1244, was introduced by RM Rail in 2015 and certified in 2017. In an interview with Railway Equipment Journal in November 2020, Vitaly Starikov, the ex-CEO of RM Rail, said that demand for such a hopper at that time was several hundred units a year, but attributed it to the fact that the Russian market was not used to such a rolling stock yet. “For example, in the US, out of a 2-million car fleet, 20-30% are aluminium ones. I hope that demand will increase and be measured not in hundreds but in thousands of units”, he pointed out.

According to RM Rail, the new hopper wagon model will be the beginning for the aluminium product line. For example, a 15-1232-05 tank car for concentrated nitric acid made of aluminium alloy 1407 and AKC-SPG42.7 tank-container for liquified natural gas made of aluminium alloy 1581 were presented in October last year.