Displacing diesel engine trains, France’s Alstom has started passenger journeys aboard the world’s first fuel cell hydrogen train along a 100km route in northern Germany.
The Coradia iLint trains, running at up to 140km/h, carry sufficient fuel to make nine end-to-end trips before refuelling, a range roughly the same as their older fossil fuel cousins.
At the official maiden launch, Alstom CEO Henri Poupart-Lafarge announced, “The world’s first hydrogen train is entering into commercial service and is ready for serial production”.
Fuel cells on top of the train generate power that drives electric motors and an auxiliary system that energises air conditioning, automatic doors and onboard electronic information monitors. The fuel is currently supplied from waste gas industrial sources but could be supplied from hydrolysed water split with renewable energy in the future.
Image: Alstom press release
This story is taken from the 21 August 2018 edition of The Warren Centre’s Prototype newsletter. Sign up for the Prototype here.