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Philly Railfan Pictures of the Week
Philly Railfan Pictures of the Week
 
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Railfan Pictures of the Week - 3/22/2020
 
Amtrak Northeast Corridor Penn Coach Yard 30th Street Station Philadelphia PA March 22 2020
 
As you pull off the Schuylkill Expressway at 30th Street, something new may catch your eye.
The second set of the new Acela 21 high speed train arrived in Philadelphia earlier this week and is parked in Penn Coach Yard. Last month the first set out of the Alstrom factory in Hornell NY went west to the AAR's Transportation Technology Center in Pueblo CO for several months of testing.
After the crews become familiar with the new train, it will probably begin testing on the Northeast and Keystone Corridors in the next few months.
The new design is similar to the original Acela with two power cars, one on each end, and the sets are operated as a unit train, but there are a few key differences. The original sets have six semi-permanently coupled cars roughly 70' in length (total set length including power cars approximately 620'), each sitting on two independent trucks. The new sets have nine cars but are expandable to twelve. The seven to ten cars in the middle of the set (coaches and cafe) share articulated trucks while the two longer end coaches share one articulated truck with the middle cars and have one independent truck adjacent to the power car. The new nine car sets look to be about 750' long, and a twelve car set should bump it up to about 950'.
The new power cars have a one piece windshield and lone wiper, as opposed to the current two piece windshield and dual wipers, giving it more of a Cyclops vibe. As for the look, while marketing might use terms like sleek, streamlined, futuristic and aerodynamic, what immediately came to mind was fugly, but I have to say, like Gritty, it kind of grows on you. Can't wait to see it in action.
 
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