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Rail pantograph is an important component of electricity powered locomotives. It collects power from overhead transmission line to traction motors for vehicle propulsion
Diesel-powered trains transfer about 30-35% of the energy generated by combustion to the wheels, whereas supplying electricity directly from an overhead powerline transfers more than 90% of the energy to the wheels.
The acquisition cost of electric locomotive engines is about 20% less than diesel locomotive engines and maintenance costs are 25-35% less than for diesel engines.
Therefore, railway electrification could provide a new market for renewable energy allowing faster switch to “green energy” and all of this would not be possible without a growth rail pantograph market
The growth of locomotive pantograph market is very closely related with rail electrification. Governments across the globe are pushing for more rail electrification to improve their energy security and clamp down on harmful emissions by Diesel engines.
Aggressive rail electrification is a part of that global megatrend. Rail electrification also generates high volume jobs, which is another important reason, why emerging countries are pushing for rail electrification.
The growth of renewable energy as a source of electricity production worldwide has resulted in very low electricity prices.
The Indian Railways plans to complete electrification of its broad-gauge routes by 2021-22. It will also run freight trains in dedicated freight corridors on electricity post 2022-23.
The EU rail electrification average was 57% in 2019.In Germany, the Pro-Rail Alliance wanted the country to set a target for the national rail network electrification of 70 percent electrification by 2025.
Faced with ever growing pressure to reduce carbon emissions, European countries are expediting rail electrification.
In the UK, however, rail electrification growth has been slow According to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), the UK’s share of electrified railways was 42% in Q2-2018.
In 2018, China announced that it will upgrade a 1,163-miles track from Karachi to Peshawar near the Afghan border with an $8 billion loan to Pakistan. It was a part of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road trade initiative, which includes $60 billion of Infrastructure finance in Pakistan.
China’s economy depends heavily upon coal and coke, metal ores, iron and steel, petroleum products, grain, fertilizers and other bulk products that are transported most economically by rail.In addition, China has high population density in settled areas and contains many large cities.
Chinese have growing purchasing power, enabling them to travel. Therefore, overall passenger demand on China Railway grew at an average of 7% YOY in 2010-18, and a large chunk of that growth has been on the high speed rail services.
The global rail pantograph market is estimated at $XX Million in 2020 growing at –% CAGR till 2025
In mid-20th century transition from steam to Diesel/electric, U.S. railroad companies chose to switch to diesel over electric locomotives because of diesel’s much lower up-front costs.
U.S. railroads is a regulated private sector industry, making it difficult for U.S. railroad companies to finance electrification upgrades. As a result, electrified rail is less than 1 percent of U.S. railroad tracks as compared to more than 30% globally.
The California commuter rail line (CalTrain) is being upgraded to very high speed rail service and will be electric powered. The system is scheduled to be operational by 2022-23 and at an initial cost of $5 billion.
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