Germany premieres the first hydrogen-powered train in the world

September 18, 2018 by  
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At last, the world’s first hydrogen-powered trains have made their global debut in the northern countryside of Germany . As of Monday, two Coradia iLint locomotives have been transporting passengers back and forth to the towns of Cuxhaven, Bremerhaven, Bremervoerde and Buxtehude, just west of Hamburg. The efficient trains were produced by French transportation engineers at Alstom, the same manufacturers who amazed the world in the early 1980s with the world-record-setting bullet train. While the TGV captured many people’s attention as the fastest locomotive in production, its true feat was providing a solution to the 1973 oil crisis in France by featuring an electric — not gas — fueled transmission. Nearly four decades later, Alstom has come to the rescue again as European cities continue to struggle with pollution. Replacing diesel powered engines that are stagnating Germany’s fight for the green is the first push. Related: New photosynthesis machine is twice as efficient at creating hydrogen fuel Alstom CEO Henri Poupart-Lafarge inaugurated the pair of novel trains at an unveiling ceremony in Bremervoerde, where the trains will undergo routine hydrogen refueling. The company leader said, “The world’s first hydrogen train is entering into commercial service and is ready for serial production.” The bright blue Coradia iLint trains currently operate on a 62-mile (100-kilometer) course. However, in equal capacity to their gas-gulping counterparts, the hydrogen-powered vehicles can travel the span of 600 miles (1000 kilometers) on one tank of hydrogen. The trains rely on fuel cells that can produce electricity from a combined mixture of hydrogen and oxygen. The models are extremely efficient in the conversion — excess electricity can be siphoned into ion lithium batteries stored on board. The only byproducts emitted by this process are steam and water. Many German states have expressed interest in adopting the models to their own transportation lines. The company announced it will be delivering a set of 14 trains to the Lower Saxony region of the nation by 2021. While the zero-emission alternatives are attractive because of their quieter, eco-friendly nature and ability to run without electrified railways, they are not without a high initial price. Stefan Schrank, Alstom’s project manager, said, “Sure, buying a hydrogen train is somewhat more expensive than a diesel train, but it is cheaper to run.” It’s a price many countries are willing to pay for cleaner air . France plans to rail its first hydrogen train by 2022, with the U.K., the Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Italy and Canada eager to follow suit. + Alstom Via The Guardian Image via René Frampe / Alstom

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Germany premieres the first hydrogen-powered train in the world

World’s first zero-emissions hydrogen train aces maiden voyage

March 24, 2017 by  
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The world’s first hydrogen-powered train recently took its maiden voyage, reaching 50 miles per hour in a passenger-free trial run on a test track in Salzgitter, Germany. The zero-emission Coradia iLint train leaves only water vapor in its wake, is completely silent, and integrates many different innovative elements to propel it down the track. These include clean energy conversion to create electricity, flexible energy storage via batteries, and smart management between traction power and available energy. It’s based around the frame of a regular diesel train and designed to run on traditional, non-electrified tracks with a combination of sustainable operation and high performance. “This test run is a significant milestone in environmental protection and technical innovation,” said Dieder Pfleger , vice president of Alstom Germany and Austria—the company that manufactures the train . “With the Coradia iLint and its fuel cell technology, Alstom is the first railway manufacturer to offer a zero-emission alternative for mass transit trains. Today our new traction system, so far successfully proved on the test ring, is used on a train for the first time – a major step towards cleaner mobility in Europe.” Related: Germany unveils world’s first zero-emission hydrogen-powered passenger train White tests of the train at the Salzgitter plant only go up to 50 miles per hour, testing at a facility in Velim, Czech Republic have seen the train travel up to nearly 90 miles per hour. Hydrogen gas used for testing the train is essentially a waste byproduct of industrial processes, and the company has plans to use wind energy to produce the hydrogen fuel needed in the future. + Alstom Images via Alstom

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World’s first zero-emissions hydrogen train aces maiden voyage

Germany unveils worlds first zero-emissions hydrogen-powered passenger train

September 21, 2016 by  
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French company Alstom unveiled the first-ever passenger train powered completely by hydrogen at this week’s Berlin InnoTrans trade show . The hydrogen train or “hydrail” will be put into service on Germany’s Buxtehude-Bremervörde-Bremerhaven-Cuxhaven line in Lower Saxony by December 2017. After two years in development, the “Coradia iLint” train offers a zero-emissions alternative to Germany’s existing fleet of diesel trains, thanks to a roof-mounted tank of hydrogen fuel. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3bUE9uHkqM The hydrail is an electric train operating with a hydrogen fuel tank on its roof that powers a fuel cell to generate electricity. This train, and others like it to come in the future, are part of a big push to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation. The Coradia iLint will be the first of its kind to carry passengers along the railway, as most other innovations in hydrail technology have been focused on cargo transport. Related: China develops first fuel cell light rail locomotive “Alstom is proud to launch a breakthrough innovation in the field of clean transportation which will complete its Coradia range of regional trains,” said Alstom chairman and CEO Henri Poupart-Lafarge, in a statement. “It shows our ability to work in close collaboration with our customers and develop a train in only two years.” Due to its electric engine, the Coradia iLint is much quieter than traditional diesel trains. In fact, even at its top speed of 87 miles per hour (140 km/h), the only sound passengers will hear comes from the motion of the wheels and air resistance. Although the hydrail trains are reportedly more expensive than existing diesel models, officials in other parts of Germany, as well as in the Netherlands, Denmark and Norway, are interested in bringing the clean running trains to their regular rail services as well. Via The Local Images via Alstom

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Germany unveils worlds first zero-emissions hydrogen-powered passenger train

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