Since 2013, Artemis has been proud to work with leading companies Ricardo and Bombardier on the project ‘Digital Displacement® Rail Transmission with Flywheel Energy Storage’ which has been supported by the government funding body Innovate UK.
The system is based on the use of Artemis Digital Displacement® pump-motors to capture braking energy from diesel multiple unit (DMU) rail cars, store it in high tech Ricardo flywheels and then use it to displace diesel fuel during vehicle acceleration. Such energy recovery is commonplace on modern electric trains but there is general agreement in the rail industry that are many routes where electrification is unlikely ever to make economic sense.
As we prepare for lab demonstrations of the system to rail industry experts, Ricardo have published a press release giving more details of the project.
In the words of Ricardo: “The ‘DDFlyTrain’ project has projected a fuel saving of around 10 percent based on the use of high speed flywheel brake recovery technology retrofitted to DMU rolling stock. This order of saving means that the technology has a potential return on investment of inside five years. The project has also produced a proof of concept test rig used to demonstrate the technology to rail industry stakeholders and a concept for integration onto a Bombardier Turbostar DMU”.
If you’d like to know more about this project, please see the paper written by members of the project consortium lead by Professor Jon Wheals of Ricardo for the IMechE’s Stephenson Conference in April 2015 : Viable flywheel system for rail.