May 17, 2020

Union Pacific awarded for emission-reducing investments

Union Pacific
emissions
CO2
investment
Freddie Pierce
2 min
UP are investing in a new Missouri rail line
Union Pacific Railroad received the Green Leadership award in transportation from the Sacramento Business Journal, following a $20 million investment i...

Union Pacific Railroad received the Green Leadership award in transportation from the Sacramento Business Journal, following a $20 million investment into 25 experimental locomotives to test emissions-reducing technologies.

The award recognizes companies, agencies and individuals demonstrating a strong commitment to making the Sacramento region a thriving hub for clean technology.

"Union Pacific consistently works to reduce locomotive emissions by developing and implementing new technology," said Mike Iden, Union Pacific general director, car and locomotive engineering. "This award recognizes our industry-leading role in emissions reduction and the positive impact that these efforts have on the communities where we operate trains."  

The company recently announced $21 million investment programme to strengthen Missouri’s transportation infrastructure, in a bid to reduce highway congestion and contribute to a cleaner environment.

Union Pacific plans to construct a second main line track spanning over nine miles in the Bell City area in southeast Missouri. The project, which is funded entirely by the company, began earlier this month, and is scheduled for completion by the end of October 2013.

The new line will extend about four miles to the north and south of Bell City and will support long-range projected rail traffic growth, improve train operating efficiency, increase capacity on the rail line and enhance safety. According to the company’s website, one Union Pacific train can take up to 300 trucks off America's roads, and Union Pacific can move one ton of freight nearly 500 miles on a single gallon of diesel fuel.

"Union Pacific helps link businesses with consumers, suppliers and markets across the nation and around the world," said Joe Bateman, Union Pacific vice president - Public Affairs, Northern Region.  "In addition to helping move customers' goods more safely and efficiently, our investments support communities by reducing traffic congestion, facilitating industrial development and, promoting economic expansion."

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Jun 21, 2021

Elon Musk's Boring Co. planning wider tunnels for freight

BoringCompany
supplychain
freight
elonmusk
2 min
Elon Musk’s tunnelling firm plans underground freight tunnels with shipping containers moved on “battery-powered freight carriers”, according to reports

Elon Musk’s drilling outfit The Boring Company could be shifting its focus towards subterranean freight and logistics solutions, according to reports. 

A Boring Co. pitch deck seen and shared by Bloomberg depicts plans to construct wider tunnels designed to accommodate shipping containers. 

Founded by Tesla CEO Musk in 2016, the company initially stated its mission was to offer safer, faster point-to-point transport for people, particularly in cities plagued by traffic congestion. It also planned longer tunnels to ferry passengers between popular destinations across the US. 

The Boring Co. completed its first commercial project earlier this year in April. The 1.7m tunnel system is designed to move professionals between convention centres in Las Vegas using Tesla EVs. It says the Las Vegas Convention Centre Loop can cut travel time between venues from 45 minutes to just two. 

 

Boring Co.'s new freight tunnels

The Boring Co.'s new tunnel designs would allow freight to be transported on purpose built platforms, labelled as “battery-powered freight carriers”. The document shows that, though the containers could technically fit within its current 12-foot tunnels, wider tunnels would be more efficient. Designs for a new tunnel, 21 feet in diameter, show that they can comfortably accommodate two containers side-by-side, with a one-foot gap between them.

The Boring Co.’s new drilling machine, dubbed Prufrock, can tunnel at a rate of one mile per week, which is six times faster than its previous machine, and is designed to ‘porpoise’ - mimicking the marine animal by ‘diving’ below ground and reemerging once the tunnel is complete. 

Tesla’s supply chain woes 

Tesla is facing its own supply chain and logistic issues. The EV manufacturer has raised the price of its vehicles, with CEO Musk confirming the incremental hike was a result of “major supply chain pressure”. Musk replied to a disgruntled Twitter user, confused as to why prices were rising while features were being removed from the cars, saying the “raw materials especially” were a big issue. 

Elon Musk Tweet

Car manufacturing continues to be one of the industries hit hardest by a global shortage in semiconductor chips. While China’s chip manufacturing levels hit an all-time high in May, and the US is proposing a 25% tax credit for chip manufacturers, demand still outstrips supply. Automakers including Volkswagen and Audi have again said they expect reduced vehicle output in the next quarter due to a lack of semiconductors, with more factory downtime likely
 

Top Image credit: The Boring Company / @boringcompany

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