Caterpillar Inc. and Chevron U.S.A. Inc. will collaborate “to confirm the feasibility and performance of hydrogen for use as a commercially viable alternative to traditional fuels” for line-haul rail, marine vessels and prime power, reported the companies, which said they will demonstrate a hydrogen-powered locomotive.
Facilitated by Caterpillar subsidiary Progress Rail, Caterpillar and Chevron are demonstrating a hydrogen-powered locomotive prototype and associated hydrogen-fueling infrastructure. The companies said work on the rail demonstration “will begin immediately at various locations across the United States.”
“As we work to provide customers with the capability to use their desired fuel type in their operations, collaborating with Chevron is a great opportunity to demonstrate the viability of hydrogen as a fuel source,” Caterpillar Group President of Energy and Transportation Joe Creed said. “This agreement supports our commitment to investing in new products, technologies and services to help our customers achieve their climate-related objectives as they build a better, more sustainable world.”
“Through Chevron New Energies, Chevron is pursuing opportunities to create demand for hydrogen—and the technologies needed for its use—for the heavy-duty transportation and industrial sectors, in which carbon emissions are harder to abate,” Chevron New Energies President Jeff Gustavson said. “Our collaboration with Caterpillar is another important step toward advancing a commercially viable hydrogen economy.”
In other developments, Union Pacific’s EMD 710 and 645 series locomotives can now run with a higher biodiesel fuel blend content. The Class I railroad reported on Aug. 19 that Progress Rail approved using up to 20% biodiesel blend in its units. Previously, the EMD 710s and 645s were approved to operate at 5%.
Following are more Railway Age articles on alternate technology-powered locomotives:
PHL to Test Progress Rail EMD® Joule
CP Embarks on Hydrogen Locomotive Pilot (With more information here: 2021 Railroader of the Year: Keith Creel, Canadian Pacific and here: CP Hydrogen Locomotive Pilot Powered by Ballard)