After three months of successful tests on the Austrian railway ÖBB. The world leader Alstom has just launched its first hydrogen train model : the Coradia iLint.
This is a first, intended to get rid of diesel on non-electrified lines.
Launched in Germany in 2018, the Coradia iLint is the world’s first passenger train powered by a hydrogen fuel cell, which produces electrical energy for traction.
Pioneer in hydrogen traction
Alstom is a pioneer in hydrogen trains, with technology developed at its Tarbes plant in France. Its first prototypes ran in Germany in 2018. Today Alstom is entering an industrial phase, with nearly 41 orders to date.
After a series of successful tests in Germany, the Netherlands and Austria, Alstom’s hydrogen train has proven to be a unique zero-emission solution for non-electrified lines.
A train designed in both France and Germany
This major innovation for rail transport was designed by Alstom teams in its German and French centers of excellence. The traction chain was designed in Tarbes, while the train set was assembled in Alstom’s Salzgitter plant in Lower Saxony.
These dual-mode trains are equipped with fuel cells that convert hydrogen stored on the roof and ambient oxygen into electricity. Lithium-ion batteries will store the energy recovered during braking, which will be reused in the acceleration phases.
The Coradia iLint model, designed especially for non-electrified lines, is equipped with 160 seats and runs at a maximum speed of 140 km/h with a range of 400 to 600 kilometers.
The first French hydrogen trains
In early April 2021, the SNCF placed an order with Alstom, on behalf of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, Grand Est and Occitanie regions, for the first 12 French hydrogen trains. The contract is worth nearly €190 millions to Alstom for a total order of 12 trainsets.
The contract provides for the delivery of three four-car trains to each of the four pioneering regions mentioned above.
The first tests in France are announced by Alstom for the end of 2023, with the objective of commercial service during 2025.
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