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GE Genesis

GE Genesis
Metro-North GE Genesis P32AC-DM #202 in new paint scheme
Type and origin
Power type Diesel-electric
Builder GE Transportation Systems
Model P40DC, P32AC-DM, P42DC
Build date 1992–2001
Total produced 321
Number rebuilt 19
AAR wheel arr. B-B
UIC classification Bo′Bo′
Gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Trucks Krupp-MaK high-speed bolsterless
Wheel diameter 40 in (1,016 mm)
Wheelbase 43 ft 2 12 in (13.17 m) (between truck centers)
Length 69 ft 0 in (21.03 m)
Width 10 ft 0 in (3.05 m)
Height 14 ft 4 in (4.37 m)
Axle load 72,000 lb (32,659 kg) Max
Weight on drivers 100%
Locomotive weight P40DC, P42DC: 268,240 lb (121,672 kilograms)
P32AC-DM: 274,400 lb (124,466 kilograms)
Fuel type Diesel
Fuel capacity 2,200 US gal (8,300 l; 1,800 imp gal)
Prime mover GE 7FDL16 (P40DC, P42DC), GE 7FDL12 (P32AC-DM)
Engine RPM range 200-1050 (600-900 while supplying HEP)
Engine type 45° V16, four stroke cycle (P40DC, P42DC), 45° V12, four stroke cycle (P32AC-DM)
Aspiration Turbocharged
Displacement 175.2 liters (10,690 cu in) (7FDL16)
131.4 liters (8,020 cu in) (7FDL12)
Alternator GMG195 (P40DC, P42DC)
GMG195A1 (P32AC-DM)
Traction motors GE 752AH (DC), GE GEB15 (AC)
Cylinders 16 (P40DC, P42DC)
12 (P32AC-DM)
Cylinder size 10.95 liters (668 cu in) [1]
Multiple working Yes
Performance figures
Maximum speed 103 mph (166 km/h) (original P40DC)
110 mph (177 km/h) (P42DC, P32AC-DM, upgraded P40DC)
60 mph (96.6 km/h) (in electric mode P32AC-DM only)[2]
Power output 4,250 hp (3,170 kW) (DC)
3,200 hp (2,400 kW) (AC)
Tractive effort P40DC, P42DC:
280.25 kN (63,000 lbf) Starting
169 kN (38,000 lbf) Continuous @38 mph (61.2 km/h) [3]
275.8 kN (62,000 lbf) Starting @ Stall to 14 mph (23 km/h)
113.43 kN (25,500 lbf) Continuous @64 mph (103 km/h)[4]
Factor of
4.25 (DC)
4.4258 (AC)
Train heating Locomotive-supplied head-end power
Locomotive brake Dynamic / Regenerative / Electropneumatic
Train brakes Electropneumatic
Operator(s) Amtrak, Metro-North Railroad, Via Rail Canada, New Jersey Transit
Number(s) Amtrak: P42DC 1-207; P32AC-DM 700-717; P40DC 800-843 (15 in service, 12 sold)
Metro-North: P32AC-DM 201-231
VIA Rail Canada: P42DC 900-920
Shore Line East: P40DC 833, 834, 836, 838, 840-843 (acquired from Amtrak)
New Jersey Transit: P40DC 4800-4803 (acquired from Amtrak)
Official name Genesis

General Electric Genesis (officially trademarked GENESIS[5]) is a series of passenger locomotives produced by GE Transportation Systems, a subsidiary of General Electric. Between 1992 and 2001, 321 units were built for Amtrak, Metro-North, and Via Rail.

The Genesis series of locomotives was designed by General Electric in response to a specification published by Amtrak and ultimately selected over a competing design presented by GM EMD. The Genesis series are unique among current North American diesel-electric locomotives because of their low height. This height restriction allowed the locomotive to travel easily through low-profile tunnels in the Northeast Corridor. The Genesis series is lower than even the previous-generation F40PH by 14 inches (356 mm), and is the only Amtrak diesel locomotive that meets the clearance or loading gauge requirements on every Amtrak route. A majority of Amtrak's trains are powered by at least one Genesis unit.


  • Technical design 1
  • Models 2
    • P40DC 2.1
      • P40DC special liveries 2.1.1
      • Upgraded and "Stimulus" P40DCs 2.1.2
    • P42DC 2.2
      • P42DC special liveries 2.2.1
      • General specifications 2.2.2
    • P32AC-DM 2.3
      • General specifications 2.3.1
  • See also 3
  • References 4

Technical design

Amtrak P42DCs #1 and #56 pulling the eastbound California Zephyr at Grand Junction, Colorado, April 2012.

The Genesis series is unique among recently manufactured North American passenger locomotives in that it uses a single, monocoque carbody design, thus making it lighter, more aerodynamic,[6] and more fuel efficient than its predecessors (F40PH, F59PH, P30CH, P32-BWH). However, this makes it more costly and time-consuming to maintain and repair. Amtrak is installing bolt-on nose cones on its units for easy replacement in the event of a grade crossing collision with a vehicle. As an example of the improvements over the predecessor locomotives, the Genesis is 22% more fuel-efficient than the F40PH while producing 25% more horsepower.[7] In addition, all Genesis locomotives have four-stroke engines instead of the two-stroke engines previously used in EMD counterparts.

The Genesis unit is a fully computerized locomotive which automatically controls all on-board functions, thus producing high reliability while keeping the maintenance requirements low. For example, its computers can automatically reduce the power plant's output in the event that the locomotive is overheating, or suffering from low oil pressure, low water pressure, or reduced airflow into the intakes, thus making it still operable.[7]

All Genesis engines can provide head-end power (HEP) to the train drawn from an alternator or inverter powered by the main engine at a maximum rating of 800 kilowatts (1,100 hp), making each unit capable of providing HEP for up to 16 Superliner railcars. The P40DC and P42DC power plants can supply 60-hertz head-end power either from the HEP alternator with the engine speed-locked to 900 rpm (normal mode) or from the traction alternator with the engine speed-locked to 720 rpm (standby mode). In the latter case, traction power is unavailable. The P32AC-DM powerplant does not have to be locked at a certain rpm because it utilizes an HEP inverter, which allows the prime mover to run at 1047 rpm when providing both traction power and HEP, and to idle at 620 rpm (or notch three) while still providing HEP for lighting and air-conditioning when not providing traction power.

The trucks of Genesis locomotives were made by Krupp Verkehrstechnik, which has since been absorbed by Siemens Mobility; the trucks on the newest Genesis locomotives carry the Siemens name.


There are three models of Genesis units in operation today: P40DC, P42DC, and P32AC-DM.


The P40DC (GENESIS Series I)[8] or Dash 8-40BP (originally known as the AMD-103 or Amtrak Monocoque Diesel - 103MPH) is the first model in the Genesis series, built in 1993. The locomotive operates in a diesel-electric configuration that uses DC to power the traction motors, producing 4,000 horsepower (2,980 kW) output at 1047 rpm. Power output to the traction motors is 3,550 hp (2,650 kW) when running in HEP mode (900 rpm) with a 0 kW HEP load. Traction horsepower in HEP mode decreases to a bare minimum of 2,525 horsepower (1,880 kW) when providing the maximum 800 kW (1,100 hp) HEP load to the train. The P40DC is geared for a maximum speed of 103 miles per hour (166 km/h). The P40DC was succeeded in 1996 by the P42DC.

A feature unique to the P40DC and P32AC-DM is a hostler stand at the rear of the locomotive providing increased visibility and reversing capabilities to the engineer while conducting reverse operations. When a unit is in operation from this stand it is limited to 10 mph (16 km/h) and a dead man's switch protects against movement without an operator being present. Two unique features to the original P40DC are the two strobes above the cab and an emergency flasher between the strobes. When they were overhauled, those features were removed, likely due to complaints from engine crews.[7]

Both the P40DC and P42DC allowed Amtrak to operate heavy long-distance trains with fewer locomotives compared to the older EMD F40PH locomotives. Two P40DCs could do the same work as three F40PHs. Additional deliveries of the P42DC ended up replacing the P40DCs. Three units had been wrecked (819 in the 1993 Big Bayou Canot train wreck and 807 and 829 in the 1999 Bourbonnais, Illinois, train accident) and scrapped. Eight were leased and later sold to the Connecticut DOT for Shore Line East in 2005, and four were rebuilt and sold to New Jersey Transit in 2007. The remaining 29 units were placed out-of-service for many years. 15 of these units have been rebuilt using 2009 ARRA stimulus funds and returned to service, now in the Phase V livery, except for 822, which is painted in Phase III Heritage livery for Amtrak's 40th Anniversary.[9]

P40DC special liveries

  • Amtrak 822: Amtrak 40th Anniversary Phase III livery

Upgraded and "Stimulus" P40DCs

By 2007, New Jersey Transit had upgraded their P40DC units with updated prime movers to match the 4,250 horsepower (3,170 kW) of the successor P42DC.[10] This was done by readjusting the position of the lay shafts within the prime mover.

Amtrak has returned 15 of their P40DC units to service as part of a project funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.[11] The first of the units were returned to service in March 2010 after being overhauled at the Beech Grove Shops. They were upgraded like NJT's units had been a few years before to have 4,250 hp (3,170 kW) and match the P42DC's maximum speed of 110 mph (177 km/h). They also received updated cab signaling systems. The upgraded locomotives still have mechanical air brakes, which makes them most suitable for trains that only require a single locomotive. This differs from the electronic air brakes on the P42DC and P32AC-DM.[12] They also feature a builder's plate indicating that they were rebuilt under the auspices of the TIGER stimulus program.


Amtrak P42DC #97 with the westbound California Zephyr at Sparks, Nevada, September 1998.
Amtrak P42DC #66 in Phase II heritage livery.
Via Rail P42DC #901 leaving Toronto on its way to Montreal.

The P42DC (GENESIS Series I)[13] is the successor model to the P40DC. It has an engine output of 4,250 horsepower (3,170 kW) at 1047 rpm, or 3,550 horsepower (2,650 kW) when running in HEP mode (900 rpm) with a 0 kW HEP load. Traction horsepower in HEP mode decreases to a bare minimum of 2,525 horsepower (1,880 kW) when providing the full 800 kW HEP load to the train.

The P42DC has a maximum speed of 110 mph (177 km/h), though Via Rail Canada only permits its engines to travel at a maximum speed of 100 mph (161 km/h).[14] Tractive effort is rated at 280.25 kN (63,000 lbf) of starting effort and 169 kN (38,000 lbf) of continuous effort at 38 mph (61.2 km/h) given wheel horsepower of 3,850 horsepower (2,870 kW).[3]

P42DCs are used primarily on most of Amtrak's long-haul and high-speed rail service outside the Northeast Corridor, as well as a service with speeds up to 160 km/h (99 mph) on Via Rail's Quebec City-Windsor rail corridor when it replaced LRC locomotives in 2001.

P42DC special liveries

  • Amtrak 156: Amtrak 40th Anniversary Phase I livery
  • Amtrak 66: Amtrak 40th Anniversary Phase II livery
  • Amtrak 145: Amtrak 40th Anniversary Phase III livery
  • Amtrak 184: Amtrak 40th Anniversary Phase IV livery
  • Amtrak 42: Special Veterans Appreciation Livery

General specifications

  • Model: P42DC 110 mph (177 km/h), 4,250 hp (3,169 kW), 800 kW (1,100 hp) HEP
  • Arrangement: B-B, high speed
  • Weight: 133.000 short tons (118.750 long tons; 120.656 t)
  • Engine Model: 7FDL16, 4 stroke cycle, with EFI
  • Alternator: 1 - GMG195
  • Motors: 4 - GE752AH DC motors, axle suspended
  • Head-End Power: 1 - GTA33 alternator, 800 kW, 480 V, 3 phase, 60 Hz, microcomputer control
  • Air Brake Schedule: 30CDW Integrated Electronic Air Brake Control
  • Auxiliary Equipment: Radiator Fan (AC): 1 GYA30
  • Equipment Blowers (AC): 2 - GDY76
  • Alternator Blower (AC): 1 GDY74
  • Dynamic Brake Blowers (DC): 2 - GDY72
  • Air Compressor: 1 - WABCO 3CDCLA Air Compressor
  • Drive/Control: AC motor - microcomputer control
  • Motor: 40 hp (30 kW)
  • Configuration & Features:
    • Aerodynamic monocoque carbody
    • Enhanced collision capability
    • Cab signal equipped - Microcabmatic by GRS
    • Microcomputer-based integrated control, full diagnostics
    • Segmented, spill resistant fuel tank
    • Automatic parking brake
    • Remote engine starting [15]


Amtrak P32AC-DM #716 departing Toronto Union Station.
Metro-North P32AC-DM #206 near Cold Spring, New York.

The P32AC-DM (GENESIS Series II)[16] was developed for both Amtrak and Metro-North. They can operate on power generated either by the on-board diesel prime mover or, for a short period of time (approximately 10 minutes),[17] power collected from a third rail electrification system at 750 volts direct current. The P32AC-DM is rated at 3,200 horsepower (2,390 kW), 2,900 horsepower (2,160 kW) when supplying HEP, and is geared for a maximum speed of 110 mph (177 km/h). Tractive effort is rated at 275.8 kN (62,000 lbf) of starting effort from 0 mph (0.00 km/h) to 14 mph (22.5 km/h) and 113.43 kN (25,500 lbf) of continuous effort at 40 mph (64.4 km/h) given wheel horsepower of 2,700 horsepower (2,010 kW).[4]

The Dual Mode P32AC-DM is unique not only because of its third-rail capability, but also because it is equipped with GE's GEB15 AC (alternating current) traction motors, rather than DC (direct current) motors as used in the other subtypes.[18] The model is confined to services operating from New York City, where diesel emissions through its two fully enclosed main terminal stations are prohibited. P32AC-DMs are seen only on Amtrak's Empire Corridor between Penn Station and Buffalo, the Ethan Allen Express, Lake Shore Limited (New York section), Adirondack, and Maple Leaf services. However, sometimes the P32AC's are traded out for a P42DC in Albany. This is due to the requirement for the P32AC engines exclusively in this section of rail, and the higher horsepower rating of the P42DC. Metro-North's locomotive-hauled commuter trains to and from Grand Central Terminal also utilize P32AC units, and Metro-North's units have an escape hatch in the nose.

The third-rail shoes are used on the over-running third-rail in Pennsylvania Station for Amtrak units and the under-running third-rail in Grand Central Terminal for Metro-North units.

All P32AC-DM models, unlike P40DC and P42DC models, lack the door on the rear of the locomotive that would normally lead to the next car, making it impossible to access the locomotive from either a coach or a trailing engine. Another unique feature is that the two lower vents near the back of the locomotive are bigger than that of P40s and P42s.

General specifications

  • Model: P32AC-DM - 110 mph (180 km/h), 3,200 hp (2,400 kW), HEP, with Dual Power 650 VDC third rail capability
  • Arrangement: B-B - Trucks fitted with 6 third rail power pick-up mechanisms
  • Weight: 274,400 lb (124,500 kg).
  • Engine Model: 7FDL12, 3,200 hp (2,400 kW) with EFI
  • Alternator: 1 - GMG195A1
  • Motors: 4 - GEB15 AC, axle suspended
  • Inverters: 4 - pulse width modulated, VVVF, one per traction motor for single axle control
  • Head-End Power: Inverter rated 800 kW (1,100 hp), 480 V, 3 Phase, 60 Hz
  • Air Brake Schedule: 26L Integrated Electronic Air Brake Control by NYAB/Knorr
  • Air Compressor: 1 - Sullair 8E Rotary
  • Configuration and Features:
    • Aerodynamic monocoque carbody
    • Enhanced collision capability
    • Cab signal equipped - Microcabmatic by GRS
    • Microcomputer-based integrated control, full diagnostics
    • Engine layover system by Kim Hot Start
    • Segmented, spill-resistant fuel tank
    • Automatic parking brake
    • Remote engine starting
    • Retractable third rail shoes
    • Blended dynamic/air brake system
    • Dual mode with seamless transition
    • Hostler stand
    • Battery jog capability [2]

See also


  1. ^ 7FDL Specifications and Emissions Description
  2. ^ a b P32AC-DM spec sheet via the Web Archive
  3. ^ a b Page 14
  4. ^ a b Page 29
  5. ^ "Earlier Locomotive Models". GE Transportation. Retrieved September 27, 2010. 
  6. ^ US 5535680 
  7. ^ a b c Warner, David C (June 1993). "AMD103: Powering Amtrak Into the 21st Century".  
  8. ^ P40DC Builders Plate
  9. ^ Amtrak P40DC roster
  10. ^ Donald Albertson (September 13, 2007). "NJT 808". Retrieved September 27, 2010. 
  11. ^ Amtrak ARRAProject List
  12. ^ Bob Johnston (October 2010). "Beech Grove to the Rescue".  
  13. ^ P42 Builders Plate
  14. ^ P42 - Via Rail
  15. ^ P42DC spec sheet via the Web Archive
  16. ^ P32 Builders Plate
  17. ^
  18. ^ Brian Solomon (2000). American Diesel Locomotives. MBI Publishing Company. p. Page 160.  
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