Germany to start using the world's first zero emission train
The world's first zero emission, hydrogen powered train is set to go into service in Germany in 2017. The "hydrail", officially called the Coradia iLint, will transport passengers on the Buxtehude-Bremervörde-Bremerhaven-Cuxhaven line from December 2017. This is a ground breaking innovation and could be the first step towards replacing heavily-polluting diesel powered trains with zero emission, hydrogen powered trains.
Diesel-powered trains in Europe
Germany has over 4,000 diesel powered trains and about 20% of all of Europe's current rail traffic works on diesel-powered locomotives.
What we know about the hydrail
The Coradia iLint emits only steam and condensed water and operates on power generated by large cells which sit on top of the train. Each two-car train-set requires a 207 kg tank of hydrogen and a fuel cell. On a full tank of hydrogen, it can complete a 800 km journey carrying up to 300 passengers. It has a top speed of 140 km/h.
Germany's plans for the hydrail
The new, silent Coradia iLint, was unveiled by French company Alstom earlier this year. The first hydrail will only cover a short route of around 96 kilometres. However, four German states have signed an agreement with Alstom regarding the purchase of 60 additional locomotives, if the hydrail's maiden run is hailed a success.
The push for clean transportation
"Alstom is proud to launch a breakthrough innovation in the field of clean transportation," said Henri Poupart-Lafarge, the CEO and Chairman of Alstom.