The new concept is a brainchild of an engineering team that managed to integrate a wide range of technological and digital solutions at a system level. A hybrid power pack is controlled by an intelligence system ensuring optimized energy balance between power sources. The system offers remote locomotive control based on machine vision. The new hybrid also features an AI-based equipment technical status prediction system. The locomotive platform may be easily reconfigured using different combinations of power modules. Advanced technologies will provide operators with enhanced fuel efficiency and green operations, reduced maintenance costs and improved locomotive availability.
"First of all, the new hybrid locomotive represents a high concentration of digital technologies. This is what makes it so unique for the market. We develop innovative solutions to meet consumer needs, while reliability and efficiency remain the basic requirements of operators," – says Alexey Belinsky, CEO of Ctrl2GO.
The hybrid locomotive is equipped with a modern fuel-efficient diesel engine and a lithium-ion battery.
"The core of the locomotive's power Intelligence is a Hybrid Power Pack Control System. It is responsible for real-time optimizing control of the power pack while ensuring minimum diesel fuel consumption and a long-life cycle of the battery module," – said Igor Seleznev, Deputy CEO of Ctrl2GO overseeing the project. "Based on our assessment, fuel saving will reach up to 30% compared to existing shunting locomotives, which means lower emissions."
The locomotive power pack includes comprehensive modules allowing quick elements assembly and removal. This modularity in design reduces time spent on maintenance and repair. The modular design provides flexible power pack configuration: it may be a dual diesel engine locomotive, a hybrid or a battery-powered locomotive depending on customer requirements.
Computer vision-based solution installed on the locomotive will gradually introduce three control automation levels. At the first stage, the collision avoidance system acts as a driver's assistant: it improves traffic safety and monitors infrastructure status. The next step is to move the driver from the locomotive cabin into a remote-control room and remote control of one or more locomotives. Finally, in the future we expect a transition to fully automated control. The system uses optical cameras, lidar, ultrasonic sensors and high-performance computing data processing units installed on-board.
Ctrl@Maintenance system, a predictive analytics solution developed by Clover Group (an entity of Ctrl2GO Group) responsible for passing the operating data about current and anticipated status of components and systems, is a key to locomotive maintenance costs reduction as it allows vehicle maintenance and repair based on the actual condition of the equipment.
The concept offers flexible locomotive customization. Customers may choose among a set of options. At the same time, the hybrid locomotive will become not just a high-tech machine, but a game changer in the industrial design.
"This concept is also unique due the implemented design solutions. We collaborated with one of the top industrial designer Vladimir Pirozhkov
and created the first designer locomotive in the history of Russian engineering," – says Kristina Dubinina, Strategic Marketing Director of TMH.
"Until recently, there has been a common belief that heavy industry is a conservative sector, far from creativity and other sophisticated matters. The concept of TMH digital hybrid dictates new standards, including aesthetic ones. Smart, functional design is becoming as important and efficient a tool in process as technological content of a product".
The hybrid locomotive is designed for shunting and general operations at various industrial factories, and due to its enhanced ecological performance, it may be operated in indoor station areas. It is expected that a locomotive fully functional prototype will be completed already next year.  Vladimir Pirozhkov is CEO of Kinetika NUST MISIS Industrial design and prototyping centre. For over 18 years, he has been working in European branches of Citroen and Toyota, first as the Interior Designer, and later as the Chief Interior Designer in Toyota Europe.