Institute of Railway Studies and Transport History
Universities of Birmingham, Sheffield and York
Developments in Modern Steam Traction for Railways
11 December 2006

A One-day Conference at the National Railway Museum in York
Walker and Alport Rooms

Outline Programme:

09:00 Registration and Coffee


Welcome and Introduction by C. Divall

09.45-11:15 Beyond Porta: New Front End Research (J.J.G. Koopmans)
(History of Front-End Research and Latest Developments)
New Build Steam in England: The A1 Project (D. Elliott)
11:15-11:45 Coffee and Tea Break
11:45-13:15 Experience with Modern Steam and new Developments (R. Waller, DLM)
Modern Steam in England: The Design of the 5AT (D. Wardale)
13:15-14:15 Lunch in the National Railway Museum
14:15-15:15 New Thinking on Fireless Steam Propulsion (H. Valentine)
Water Treatment for Modern Steam Locomotives (M. Bane)
15:15-15:45 Tea and Coffee Break

Modern Steam on the Hauenstein in Switzerland (A. Haas)
Traction Cost Comparisons for Indonesian Coal Haulage (C. Newman)
Reconverting the good Ship Spiez to Steam Operation (R.Waller, DLM)

17:15-17:30 Closing addresses by P. Salvesen of Northern Rail

Conference Chairs:

Colin Divall (IRS&TH), Robin Saunders (Sheffield) and Felix Schmid (RRUK)

Conference Fees:

£125.00 Standard Conference Fee including Refreshments and Proceedings
£ 90.00 Advance Payment Fee (Deadline 20 October 2006)
£ 50.00 Special Fee (Limited Number of Places, on Application to the IRS&TH)

Sponsoring Organisations:

Institute of Railway Studies & Transport History, National Railway Museum, Rail Research UK

Further Information:

Martyn Halman, IRS&TH Facilitator
Institute of Railway Studies & Transport History
National Railway Museum
Leeman Road
North Yorkshire
YO26 4XJ
P: +44 (0)1904 686 284
Marina Boulis
Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Sheffield
Mappin Street
South Yorkshire
S1 3JD
P: +44 (0)114 222 7751

Objectives of the Conference Organisers

The one-day conference on Developments in Modern Steam Traction for Railways is aimed at showcasing recent research and technical advances in railway steam traction for commercial use in appropriate applications. Colin Divall and Felix Schmid initiated this event in order to disseminate the results of Dr. J.J.G. Koopmans’ ground-breaking research into the front end design of steam locomotives and to promote current work on modern steam traction that is taking place in a number of European countries and South America. It is hoped that the speakers and audience will engage in fruitful debates on the future direction of new and modern steam traction.

Who Should Attend

‘Developments in Modern Steam Traction’ is targeted at railway engineers and managers working in a professional capacity in today’s railway industry and in heritage operations. The conference is intended to raise their awareness of current developments in modern steam traction, the opportunities and limitations. The organisers are expecting delegates with realistic views of the potential of modern steam traction in tourist markets and interested in optimising its performance while minimising the environmental impact of steam railway operations. Heritage railways, in particular, will find that they have to improve the environmental footprint of their operations if they are to continue to succeed in an increasingly ecologically aware tourist market place.

The Contributions

Colin Divall will introduce the conference and will set the scene for the conference, adopting the perspective of the historian of technology.

Jos Koopmans studied at the Universities of Delft and Sheffield and presented his doctoral thesis 'The fire burns much better...' (quoted from Trevithick) at the University of Sheffield in autumn 2005. His theoretical and practical studies have led to a substantial extension of the work of Chapelon and Dante Porta and have resulted in guidelines for good practice in front end design. Jos will describe the history of front-end research from its earliest days at the beginning of the 19th century to the work of Porta in Argentina. He will then outline the conclusions from his theoretical studies and will describe the results of the tests he undertook with the RTM54 locomotive in Holland.

David Elliott will report on the ongoing construction of the replica A1 locomotive, including the production of the boiler, and will update the audience on the current status. He will highlight the difficult compromises that must be accepted when recreating a historic locomotive so that it satisfies modern standards of safety and environmental performance.

Roger Waller of Dampflokomotiv und Maschinenfabrik of Switzerland will outline his company’s experience with building modern steam locomotives and a new steam engine for the ‘Montreux’ lake steamer, operating on Lake Geneva. He will also discuss recent projects and plans.

David Wardale will present a technical paper on the design of the 5AT project, aimed at producing a modern high performance steam locomotive for mainline tourist trains and special applications. He will outline the major technical advances that will be incorporated in the design to satisfy modern safety and environmental regulations and to achieve sustainable success in commercial operation.

Harry Valentine will outline current thinking on the use of stored steam in traction applications, with a particular focus on the availability of process steam and appropriate industrial applications of the technology.

Martyn Bane will discuss his work on taking forward Porta’s ideas on water treatment for modern steam traction and its benefits.

Alfred Haas will present a Swiss view on the potential role of modern steam traction in enhancing the attractiveness of community railways and in revitalising branch lines.

Chris Newman has conducted a major study of the economics of coal traction for the haulage of coal in Indonesia, based on a detailed analysis of such operations in China.

Paul Salveson from Northern Rail will provide a closing summary, commenting on the relevance of the day’s proceedings for today’s railway industry.

Conference Proceedings

Conference proceedings, including technical papers by the authors, will be published by IRS&TH after the conference in paper form and will be dispatched to delegates at the address given on the registration form.

Download the full details, including a booking form, in Adobe Acrobat PDF format (33kB)