As more nations get on the climate change train to implement the Paris Accords, one French company; Alstom unveiled the world’s first hydrogen-powered zero-emission train commercial train at InnoTrans, the railway industry’s largest trade fair, which took place in Berlin from 20 to 23 September 2016.
Called Coradia iLint, the train is dead quiet and is powered by hydrogen cells and seeing as hydrogen is a major element in water, emission from this train is expected to be steam and condensed water.
While Europe has made giant strides in modernising its railway network, the company behind this idea says electrification of the railway network hasn’t still covered enough grounds hence the need for an alternative such as this. In their words, “a significant part of Europe’s rail network will remain non-electrified in the long term. In many countries, the number of diesel trains in circulation is still high – more than 4,000 cars in Germany, for instance.” This also means while the cost of electrification remains high, diesel trains which emit CO2 cannot be answer as the world moves closer to realizing clean energy aspirations by 2030.
So starting 2017, Germany will be the first to get the new trains expected to run from Buxtehude-Bremervörde-Bremerhaven-Cuxhaven line in the northwestern German state of Lower Saxony.
Other regions are expected to follow suit in Europe. This comes as technologies like the Hyperloop are promising faster and more efficient transportation in future.