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Current and Proposed New-Builds

Discussion in 'Steam Traction' started by aron33, Aug 15, 2017.

  1. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Just to get back on topic, given the restrictions due to Covid it is re-assuring to note the progress by many "New Build" groups. However which projects are likely to steam in 2021,2022 and 2023?
     
  2. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Three really.

    Firstly, as you say, there is energy density, particularly volumetric energy density (i.e. you need a large volume for a given release of energy). To an extent, that is compounded by the second problem, which is ...

    Storage. As a liquid, you are talking serious cryogenics - 20K rather than, say for liquid nitrogen, 77K. That is technically much harder (and energy intensive) to achieve. Liquid nitrogen is a bulk chemical easily handled (to the extent it is used even in an environment like a railway workshop to shrink cylinder liners). Liquid hydrogen is far harder to produce and store. Moreover, the insulation to store it all adds further bulk which makes the volumetric problem worse (especially for small quantities) if you consider the volume to be the total system volume, not just that of the fuel itself. Alternatively, you could store under pressure, but that has its own problems of mass (thick-walled cylinders etc). Or you absorb on a metal, but that adds complexity and you have a lifetime issue with how many times the metal substrates can be recharged before they start to degrade and lose their absorption capacity.

    The third problem is then production: current industrial production is mostly from steam reforming of methane to produce hydrogen and carbon monoxide ("syn gas") which is a useful chemical feedstock, and from which hydrogen can be separated if required. But it isn't a low carbon route: if the aim is just to get energy out, you'd be better off just burning the methane.

    Of the three, the third looks most amenable to improving - finding more cost effective, less carbon-producing means to produce hydrogen is just a question of research (and to a degree economics), there is no inherent reason why it shouldn't be possible. The storage problem is less significant for stationary plant than mobile, and energy density is largely a non-issue for stationary plant. So while I think hydrogen probably has some part in the future energy mix, I am not totally sure it will be for vehicles, but maybe as some way of capturing surplus renewable energy and then releasing it when required; or perhaps as an intermediate on the way to a potentially more useful fuel such as methanol, ammonia or hydrazine or similar liquid with high hydrogen content.

    Tom
     
  3. Allegheny

    Allegheny New Member

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    Regarding alternative fuels, this was on the BBC website fairly recently

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-54511743
     
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  4. Sheff

    Sheff Well-Known Member

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    Would hydrogen not be better utilised in fuel cells? FC + electric motor feels intrinsically neater, lower maintenance than any form of mechanical engine use.
     
  5. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    Yes, but fundamentally whether you use a fuel cell or a conventional burner / engine, that doesn’t get you round the density, storage or low-carbon production problems.

    Hence I think the interest in ammonia above - you start to avoid the handling problems (liquid at -30C or at room temperature at moderate pressures, rather than liquid at -253C) and energy density. The low-carbon route to ammonia needs perfecting as well, of course ...

    Tom
     
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  6. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Interesting though this thread digression is - would it be better in another section of the forum with a wider , relevant audience?
    Unless I have missed a "New Build" with hybrid Hydrogen power??
     
  7. Sheff

    Sheff Well-Known Member

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    Reported for same :)
     
  8. Allegheny

    Allegheny New Member

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    There is a similar discussion on this thread
    Class 321 EMU's to be powered by Fuel Cells ......
    They could possibly be merged under the title of, say "Sustainable Fuels".
    I have noticed in the past that these thread digressions have often dried up when moved to a more logical place!
     
  9. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    I think 32424 Beachy Head is well advanced so 2021 and 82045 is still on target for late 2022. The Patriot project for 2023?
     
  10. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    6880 Betton Grange must be in the mix or maybe this is less of a new build, more a restoration?
     
  11. Matt37401

    Matt37401 Part of the furniture

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    They all look the same! :p
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2020
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  12. Bikermike

    Bikermike Member

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    If not, they'll just whack the plates on the Saint and nobody will notice...
     
  13. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    Okay, I take the point and promise not mention any copper-top projects ever again :)
    It's strange how a show of copper up top causes so much myopia though?
     
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  14. class8mikado

    class8mikado Member

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    There a good chance that the P2 Will steam in 2023 may not be ready to run though...
     
  15. Bikermike

    Bikermike Member

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    you've seen one, you've seen them all....

    (Actually, I nearly responded that "it's already finished", then realised it was the Saint that has finished, not the Grange. Mind you, the website still has it in pieces, so you never know... it could all be a castle with a variety of disguises)

    Not so much not-ferrous myopia as limited website updates - the Clan mob tell you every time they make a bolt, the Saint people haven't reported it finished... I await the Atlantic crew not reporting until it goes in for it's first heavy overhaul....)
     
  16. MellishR

    MellishR Part of the furniture Friend

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    Hmm! I see what you mean. "Latest News" February 2018. All the razzmatazz when it was launched, a whole book about the project published, but nobody thought of updating the website.
     
  17. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    You surprise me - especially since I have their book titled "rebirth of a classic steam locomotive - the story of the Lady of Legend". Maybe you missed it or confused it with a book on another Swindon design, I'm really not sure. I also attended the launch event at Didcot and yes there was lots of copper on display. :) I might agree that some groups are better at managing web-progress updates though. Maybe someone close to GWS can comment?

    I guess this banter on GWR engines looking alike is somewhat odd in my belief as soon as the GWS announce that they have repurposed parts from an 8F boiler to use for their County 4-6-0 then suddenly everyone will seemingly notice and show their disappointment? You can't have it both ways guys, be honest. If you can't tell a Grange from a Hall then I'm sure you won't notice an 8F firebox in a County!

    On an even more light-hearted vein, maybe I can propose that to make life so much easier in future, so that any 'non-GWR types' can know what they're looking at, we can adopt a new standard livery ruling whereby all Halls are painted Garter Blue, Castles can be Stroudley Yellow, Manor's Crimson Lake and the 'new' Grange can be a fruit-coloured Green? Or would that just confuse with the other engines of these colours? :)

    Yes, silly but hey, the "GWR engines all look the same" is just the reason some need to find their nearest Specsavers. You just aren't looking hard enough. :)
     
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  18. Bikermike

    Bikermike Member

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  19. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Nat Pres stalwart

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    This year, to be fair, news has been short, but there are I believe extenuating circumstances :rolleyes: (Though there have been a couple of updates in the Bluebell Times). But if you take, say, last year, there were website updates in February, April, June, July and October, plus the biannual supporters' magazine. It's not the same as, say, the 82045 project with a religious schedule of monthly updates, but even with a project proceeding at some pace, there is only so much you can report before it does get to the stage of "and then we added another rivet."

    I think any project tends to find its natural rhythm of communications, governed at least in part by who they have available to assist with such things. Personally, I prefer the Atlantic approach of getting relatively fewer, but relative weighty updates. Others may prefer other approaches.

    Tom
     
  20. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    Last edited: Nov 23, 2020

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