Australia 1917

Robin Barnes - Railway Art and History

Robin Barnes, Railway Art and History

That the Commonwealth Railways' 1691 km of standard gauge track across the arid, inhospitable Nullarbor Plain was unsuited to operation by steam locomotives was obvious to the line's first Chief Engineer, Henry Deane, but his intention to employ diesel-electric power from the beginning was thwarted by higher level indecision. Alternatives to steam were on offer, however, one early example of 1914 coming from the British builder Hawthorn-Leslie. Pictured here, it was to have employed William Durtnall's silent, long expansion 1000 hp petrol engine, driving six axles through his sophisticated Paragon electro-magnetic control system. World War 1 forced its abandonment, although it seems unlikely Deane in any event would have been permitted to place an order. Steam locomotives struggled on until as late as 1951.
Robin Barnes, Railway Art and History  Robin Barnes, Railway Art and History
All railway art is for viewing only and is copyrighted to Robin Barnes 2002.
The railway art may not be reproduced in any way without written permission from the artist.