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You are here: Home » Resources » Schenectady Electrical Handbook » General Electric Electric Locomotives
See Also: General Electric Company

Schenectady Electrical Handbook
The Schenectady Works of the General Electric Company

Electric Locomotives: Building No. 16

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[This information is from pp. 41-44 of the Schenectady Electrical Handbook by the American Institute of Electrical Engineers. (Schenectady, NY: General Electric Press, 1904). It is in the Schenectady Collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at Schdy R 621.3 A51s.]

The General Electric Company has developed nearly all the modern apparatus for heavy electric traction, and the various types, manufactured at the rate of 200 a year, show a complete history of the development of electric locomotives, from the small mining locomotives intended to work in low galleries to huge machines designed for handling the heaviest freight or passenger service. In addition to the large four-motor equipments designed for freight haulage, the Company manufactures a complete line of smaller locomotives suited to power and mining and interfactory transportation.

One of the early locomotives equipped with four 125 H.P. motors, was built in 1894, and has been in continuous operation since its installation, doing freight service at the Ponemah Mills at Taftville, Conn.

Among the first of the steam railroads to place electric locomotives in regular service was the Baltimore & Ohio. Three 96-ton electric locomotives were originally built for this road, each equipped with four 400 H.P. motors, for handling the terminal traffic, passenger and freight, through a tunnel entering the city of Baltimore. It was found that one of these locomotives could accelerate a loaded train equivalent to 52 freight cars having a total weight of 1900 tons on a grade of .8 of 1%, the draw-bar pull exerted during acceleration being 63,000 pounds. So satisfactory was their operation that an order was placed for two more larger locomotives which are now in commercial service. These are two of the most powerful locomotives in the world, having a weight of 320,000 pounds on the drivers, built in two separate units of 80 tons each. Each locomotive has a draft gear of approved design, which will withstand a maximum draw-bar pull of more than 100,000 pounds. The electrical equipment of each unit consists of four 225 H.P. geared motors, giving a normal rating of 1800 H.P., or maximum temporary output of 3000 H.P., for the complete locomotive. In order to convey some idea of the tractive power of these locomotives, it may be noted that at the nominal rating of the motors, each locomotive is capable of accelerating on the level a train weighing 8000 tons.

[Engraving: 160-Ton Electric Locomotive Built for B. & O. R. R.: original size (29K) | 4x enlarged (94K)]

[Photo: Electric Locomotive Hauling Freight Cars at Schenectady Works: original size (8K) | 9x enlarged (54K)]

The General Electric Company has at present in use in its yards, for the purpose of switching freight cars between factories, two locomotives, one weighing 30 tons, the other 10. These take current from the line through a specially constructed self-reversing bow trolley.

The New York Central & Hudson River R.R. has recently placed an order with the General Electric Company for 30 powerful electric locomotives for their New York terminal service. These locomotives will be of special design, weighing 85 tons and equipped with four 550 H.P. gearless motors, as described on page 37. Their maximum speed when hauling trains will be approximately 75 miles per hour.

There are 650 General Electric mining locomotives in operation in various mines throughout the world.

[Photo: A View in the Locomotive Department: original size (30K) | 4x enlarged (92K)]

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You are here: Home » Resources » Schenectady Electrical Handbook » General Electric Electric Locomotives
See Also: General Electric Company updated March 30, 2015

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