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a locomotive with its own power source and a turbine as its prime mover. Steam or gas turbines may be used.
The steam turbine has not been used in locomotives mainly because of the bulkiness of its power plant and its low overall efficiency. Gas turbines are used as the prime mover in turbine locomotives, the first of which was developed and put into service in 1948 in the USA.
The construction of turbine locomotives, however, has not been very successful. The development and improvement of the turbine locomotive are linked to the possibility of developing a locomotive with a high unit power (that is, an efficiency of 30 percent) at a sufficiently low specific weight (that is, the weight per unit power) and to further improvement of the locomotive’s power and design properties.