World premiere as a German railway line run solely on hydrogen


A railway line in Germany has become the first in the world to be operated solely by hydrogen trains.

After four years of testing, 14 Coradia iLint trains built by Alstom have replaced 15 diesel trains on the route between Cuxhaven, Bremerhaven, Bremervörde and Buxtehude.

The trains will be operated by evb on behalf of Landesnahverkehrsgesellschaft

Niedersachsen (LNVG), had been looking for alternatives to diesel trains since 2012. The other partners in the project are the Elbe-Weser railway and transport company (evb) and the gas and engineering company Linde.

Coradia iLint in Sweden // Credit: Alstom

The Coradia iLints have a range of 1,000 kilometers and are emission-free in operation as they only emit steam and condensed water during operation. On the evb network, they will move at speeds of 80 to 120 kilometers per hour, with a maximum speed of 140 kilometers per hour.

They can run all day on a single tank of hydrogen and will be refueled at Linde’s hydrogen filling station in Bremervörde, which has 64 high-pressure 500 bar storage tanks with a total capacity of 1,800 kg. .

Last year, Alstom received an award for its hydrogen-powered Coradia iLint train. They have also been tested in Austria, Sweden and the Netherlands.

In addition to the LNVG contract, Alstom has ordered 27 Coradia iLint trains for the Frankfurt metropolitan area, six Coradia Stream hydrogen trains with an option for 8 more for Lombardy in Italy, and 12 Coradia Polyvalent hydrogen trains shared in four French regions different.

Coradia iLint Wasserstofftriebzug von Alstom
Recharging a train with hydrogen // Credit: Alstom.

Henri Poupart-Lafarge, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Alstom, said:

“Emission-free mobility is one of the most important goals to ensure a sustainable future and Alstom has a clear ambition to become the world leader in alternative propulsion systems for rail. The world’s first hydrogen train, the Coradia iLint, demonstrates our clear commitment to green mobility combined with cutting-edge technology. We are very proud to put this technology into series operation as a world first, together with our excellent partners.

Coradia iLint Hydrogen train being tested in Austria
Coradia iLint hydrogen train being tested in Austria // Credit: Alstom

“Despite numerous electrification projects in several countries, a significant part of the European rail network will remain un-electrified in the long term. In many countries, the number of diesel trains in circulation is still high, with more than 4,000 cars in Germany, for example.


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