The freight trains operating in KiwiRail’s rail corridor move more than nineteen million tonnes of cargo each year. Much of that cargo is perishable, and as such KiwiRail uses refrigerated containers to keep goods fresh. These containers require power during trips that bring them a long way from a power grid, where a fault would be costly for KiwiRail and their customers.
It is this requirement for reliability that brought KiwiRail to Shape Energy. We were able to provide the client with fourteen new generators to be deployed around their rail network, as well as the maintenance services required to keep them up and running in the varied conditions they would be facing. Each generator powers two containers aboard the train, keeping its contents cold. Additionally, thanks to our project partners McKay, telemetry systems were installed within the supplied generators to give KiwiRail better control of their assets, and ourselves better data around the maintenance needs of them.
The greatest challenge of this project was its mobility. With each generator moving throughout the country aboard freight trains as necessary, scheduling and having the time to complete preventative maintenance and repairs was a challenge to overcome. Co-ordination across the country, powered by the generator’s telemetry system ensured that each genset received the care it required to keep working for the client. This project has required the co-operation of team working all over the country, all working on the generators Shape Energy originally supplied.
In addition to supplying and servicing the new generators put into use or the rail corridor, our technicians maintain and service the existing pool of generator assets KiwiRail already had. The telemetry equipment that ensures work is done before a generator fails was also installed into the existing assets, keeping our standard of maintenance high across all assets no matter their age.
We have provided KiwiRail with assets that will set the standard for what they will expect from their generators going forward. KiwiRail need to provide their customers with an excellent experience, and toward that end KiwiRail give them a guarantee that their produce will be safe and secure while travelling aboard their fleet. With so many of New Zealand’s exports being fresh produce, refrigerated transport of key to KiwiRail’s success in delivering on this promise. It is our generators that give KiwiRail the confidence that they can make that guarantee. We continue to give them that guarantee as we service the genset travelling throughout New Zealand.