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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 3:57 pm 

Joined: Mon May 24, 2010 10:22 am
Posts: 489
Possible correction.

It is my understanding that the GE (UP) Steam Turbines were used in helper service on the Great Northern Ry. NOT the Northern Pacific Ry.

-Hudson


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 4:22 pm 

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2005 9:34 pm
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Great post James!

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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 4:25 pm 
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Location: Beaumont, Texas
BigBoy 4023 wrote:
Is that model of X12 a photo shop or a real HO model? I would like to know more about it?

Robert


Image

It is an HO scale model that I developed based on a particular drawing I found on the web. It is a card model -- the concept had a pair of three axle trucks mounted on bolsters; one of the bolsters is also the pivot between the two permanently coupled sections; making a motorized version difficult at best.

Here is a short video I put together on the concept and the model:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FsGtEAOu71A&t=11s

Image

It started out as a static card model. But, staging it on my layout, I realized that it could negotiate the outer curves of my layout. I then picked up a pile of wheels, a pile of couplers including one mounted in a coupler pocket, and a A-B pair of Union Pacific F-7 diesels. With a lot of patience and after multiple wrecks; I managed to get the setup to actually work; illustrating how it could negotiate around a curve while keeping the reactor and shielding close to the center of the rail; since it made up most of the mass of the locomotive, having it move too far off center would have tipped the locomotive over. The reactor was suspended on a truss which was suspended between the pivots of the two bolsters.

This video shows it in "operation"; I hope you enjoy it; and thanks for asking.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VAqapkfEJFc&t=3s

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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 5:22 pm 
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Location: Beaumont, Texas
Robert;

I am a little familiar with the British GT3 turbine; and it's sad tale of woe -- how it was originally intended to be a gas turbine conversion of existing steam locomotive chassis; but the gestation period for it was so long that by the time it was operational, the steam locomotives were gone.

Teething issues and steam locomotive chassis aside, was it really a success? You mention that uses a gas turbine with a recooperator, but did it really do any better than a conventional gas turbine?

I think both gas and steam turbines by virtue of their fundamental designs did not make them good locomotive powerplants. They were fragile, and had poor efficiency at less than max load conditions. Shop crews were also not familiar with them.

Would adding a recoperator really make a "silk purse out of sow's ear."? (Sorry for the non-preservation banter; this not something you can discuss just anywhere.)

I guess you have seen this fully functional model of the GT3?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1UVvWiHqvE

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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 7:08 pm 

Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2012 1:40 am
Posts: 213
James, Thank you for the details on X-12. It is an interesting concept that thank God did not become reality. The turbines were enough of a problem in their later days as people grew tired of their noise and pollution.

GT3 was never written off as a technical failure. It was considered the most successful of the BR turbine locomotives. The problem was in as you mentioned, It took too long to get it going. BR had already committed to diesel and electric traction. It is a shame though GT3 was scrapped considering how long the body and tender minus power plant languished around. It should have gone to the NRM for preservation. GT3 would be a blast riding behind up the Shap incline or over the Settle to Carlisle line.

I have seen the model of GT3 and find it interesting but also not 100% like the real GT3 in the turbine and power transmission to the rails. I know there are limited in model making though.

I am thinking about talking to a fellow I know and see what it would take to make a 3D Printed full fledged model of the UP X-12. At the current rates it would be quite expensive as FUD is not a cheap medium to print in. Need to try and figure out what rolling chassis would work for mechanisms. He probably could design the whole model to fit certain kinds of motors and trucks though.

Robert


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2018 7:20 pm 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 725
12136 274T Steamotive 2-C+C-2 Std 2500hp 2/1939 2-C-C-2-530/548-6GE725B
Union Pacific #1 Steam-Turbine Elect
Returned to General Electric 6/17/1939
General Electric #1
Great Northern #1
Demonstrated
Returned to General Electric Late 1943

12137 274T Steamotive 2-C+C-2 Std 2500hp 2/1939 2-C-C-2-530/548-6GE725B
Union Pacific #2 Steam-Turbine Elect
Returned to General Electric 6/17/1939
General Electric #2
Great Northern #2
Demonstrated
Returned to General Electric


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:00 am 
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Location: Beaumont, Texas
Quote:
James, Thank you for the details on X-12. It is an interesting concept that thank God did not become reality. The turbines were enough of a problem in their later days as people grew tired of their noise and pollution.


Thing is, this locomotive had a cooling tower built into it. Anyone who has been around generating stations knows how in certain atmospheric conditions the towers emit clouds of "steam"; one could imagine the terror this would have caused as they rumbled across the prairie spewing out clouds of steam.

BigBoy 4023 wrote:
I am thinking about talking to a fellow I know and see what it would take to make a 3D Printed full fledged model of the UP X-12. At the current rates it would be quite expensive as FUD is not a cheap medium to print in. Need to try and figure out what rolling chassis would work for mechanisms. He probably could design the whole model to fit certain kinds of motors and trucks though.

Robert


I am quite happy with my card model; happy enough that I can't work up the energy to build a "version 2.0" based on the what I learned from this prototype.

The challenge will be the span bolsters; they are hinged to the body in the middle, and to the trucks on end; the two sections were separately hinged to the second bolster. It took some experimenting to get it to work without binding with the frame on curves.

There is only one locomotive ever built that had two span bolsters with two three axle trucks on each end; not surprisingly, it is the N&W steam turbine locomotive "Jawn Henry". There have been working models made of it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjzKwr3pmxA

There is another concept drawing of the X-12 that has bolsters with the pilots on the ends like the Jawn Henry and the GG-1; it makes far more sense than the EMD style nose; since the nose swings out so far on curves:

Image

John T wrote:
12136 274T Steamotive 2-C+C-2 Std 2500hp 2/1939 2-C-C-2-530/548-6GE725B
Union Pacific #1 Steam-Turbine Elect
Returned to General Electric 6/17/1939
General Electric #1
Great Northern #1
Demonstrated
Returned to General Electric Late 1943

12137 274T Steamotive 2-C+C-2 Std 2500hp 2/1939 2-C-C-2-530/548-6GE725B
Union Pacific #2 Steam-Turbine Elect
Returned to General Electric 6/17/1939
General Electric #2
Great Northern #2
Demonstrated
Returned to General Electric


One thing that set the Union Pacific steam turbine locomotives apart from the C&O and N&W steam turbine locomotives is that they were condensing power plants, like the X-12. You can see the "cooling tower" section on the back of the locomotive in the above picture.

I read an interview somewhere with the crew of the one of the engines while they were working on the Great Northern during the war. Supposively the engineers that have been traveling with them all this time had managed by then to work the bugs out. But by then it was too late; and they were scrapped and the experiment never repeated by GE.

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Surviving World Steam Project - New Address!

International Stationary Steam Engine Society


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 10:35 am 

Joined: Mon May 24, 2010 10:22 am
Posts: 489
UP 8080 the Coal Turbine Electric.

Worked but they could never stop the pulverized coal from abrading the turbine blades.

A UP Alco PA for a Cab and a ex-GN Electric for the turbine.

-Hudson


Attachments:
UP 8080B.jpg
UP 8080B.jpg [ 114.78 KiB | Viewed 851 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2018 4:31 pm 

Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2012 1:40 am
Posts: 213
Regarding UP 8080 of the 1960's, I have asked myself over one hundred times the simple question? Why not coal gasification instead of pulverizing the coal. It makes so much more sense to me to use a coal gas to run a turbine engine as the gas would be harmless to the turbine engine blades. The Chinese had a coal gas fired QJ running around as an experiment. If not coal gas then why not coal slurry refined for a turbine engine? I am thinking Union Pacific did not quite think through the design of UP 8080.

A study was done in 1985 on coal gas turbine locomotives. https://proceedings.asmedigitalcollection.asme.org/data/conferences/asmep/83798/v002t03a003-85-igt-48.pdf Paper from NASA on coal gas turbine locomotive. https://ntrs.nasa.gov/search.jsp?R=19830066814 So not a completely new idea but rather an untried idea.

With GE getting out of the rail business any hope for a new generation of turbine locomotives probably has gone up the stack at this point.



Robert


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:24 am 
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Location: Beaumont, Texas
Just stumbled upon this series of photographs of the C&O M-1 steam turbine locomotive; including one that shows where the air brake pumps were located.

http://bassman5911.tumblr.com/post/8063 ... nuary-1948

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Hebrews 10:20a

Surviving World Steam Project - New Address!

International Stationary Steam Engine Society


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2018 3:54 pm 

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:05 pm
Posts: 725
Remember, it didn't just have to work it had to be cheaper than diesels. Th BN tried a coal dust/diesel oil mix in a diesel engine but had the same problem with grit the UP turbine had. Diesel's original engine was supposed to run on coal dust but oil worked much better.


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:42 pm 

Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2012 1:40 am
Posts: 213
Right, That is why I am interested in why coal gasification wasn't tried on the UP turbine? wood gas had been used during WW2 in Europe to power automobiles with some success.

Maybe this idea of a coal gas turbine should be explored as a 21 century new build coal fired locomotive like those presented on the ultimate steam pages.

Robert


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:46 pm 

Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2011 9:40 pm
Posts: 793
BigBoy 4023 wrote:
Right, That is why I am interested in why coal gasification wasn't tried on the UP turbine? wood gas had been used during WW2 in Europe to power automobiles with some success.Robert


Probably because they still had coal chutes and other coal handling facilities in place on much of their system. And they did not want to try too many new things at once. The
coal turbine was a huge leap in and of itself.

The 80/8080 never completed more than a small handful of successful trips and never went west of Cheyenne. The crushed coal had little to do with it, as the coal itself never came in contact with the turbine blades. The resulting fly ash did, however, and it abraded the blades. About the only good thing about that was that it wore the blades fairly evenly, rather than creating an imbalance condition resulting in a catastrophic failure.


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:57 pm 

Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2012 1:40 am
Posts: 213
My idea was to have the gasification system on the tender in place of the coal dust grinder. Solid coal could still have been loaded in the coal bin and fed into a gasifier.

Is there any known video of UP 8080?

Robert


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 Post subject: Re: UP 8500 turbines?
PostPosted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:46 am 

Joined: Thu Aug 22, 2013 12:51 pm
Posts: 22
Location: USA PA 16508
Hello,
I picked up a paperwork collection that a former GE employee's family was selling at a train show in Erie following his death. I've since sorted them, using the captions provided, and the UP file has about 30 photos/diagrams from the 1936-1938 timeframe that may be related to this topic. I have no knowledge on the topic beyond what the captions provide but it is a wonderful 2-box collection. If you folks could tell me whether the photos have been published elsewhere I'd appreciate it. If not and it would be of interest I may have them scanned and made available on cd. I'll list some of the captions today and if there is interest I'll try scanning them at work tomorrow and post the photos if I can figure out how, or maybe pm them to James Hefner if he'd be willing to do so on my behalf.

In the UP folder here are some of the photo captions:

>model of steam-electric locomotive, 5000 hp. Oblique top view. for the UP Co. 11/16/36. (Photo, not the model itself, but looks like James' #1 locomotive from the top of the 7/3 post.)


>Boiler-auxiliar turbine-gear-pump set for G-E Steam-Electric loco. 5/20/37

>(diagram) GE single-stage steam burbine, type D-60. Longitudinal section with parts numbered and list of parts. 5/26/37
>(diagram) locomotive steam power plant piping diagram
>locomotives under construction. Ford 1000-HP diesel electric and partly completed cab of UP steam-electric in background-in loco assembly dept in Building 10 at GE Erie Works.
>UP steam-elec o test at Erie Works. Class 2-c-c--342/530-6GE725.
>cab and frame structure, class 2-c-c-2-342/536-6GE725. A side view showing condenser-inlet louvers. 10-23-37
>equipment arrangement in operating cab for 2c-c-342/530-6GE725 as approved June 16 1937 by UP reps. Front view of enginman's position. 6/29/37
>Pony truck for GE steam-elec loco. Oblique view opposite train-control end. 9/17/37
>Cab underframe and truss construction with cab sheets and sand box partly assembled for 2-c-2-342/530-6GE-725A.
>Interior view showing Bailey meter panel from fuel-tank aisle 2-c-c-2-342/530-6GE725.

Well, that's the kind of thing I have. Pardon my ignorance if I'm off base in believing they're related---I'm just trying to let you know the photos exist and I'm willing to share them if anyone's interested. It's obvious from the prior posts that you are all better read on the topic than I (I just know the collection shouldn't be in a dumpster) so let me know if they're already available and I'll redirect my efforts.

Thank you for the education,

Susan Yosten
Railfan, document collector, depot owner, researcher in Erie, PA


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