Alstom has performed 10 days of tests of the Coradia iLint hydrogen fuel cell train—the world’s first passenger train powered by hydrogen fuel cells—on the 65-kilometer line between Groningen and Leeuwarden to the north of the Netherlands.
The tests follow 18 successful months of passenger service on the Buxtehude–Bremervörde–Bremerhaven–Cuxhaven line in Germany, where a total of 41 Coradia iLints have already been ordered. The latest tests make the Netherlands the second country in Europe where the train has proven itself a unique emissions-free solution for non-electrified lines.
Last October, Alstom and the Province of Groningen, local operator Arriva, Dutch railway infrastructure manager ProRail and energy company Engie signed a pilot project agreement to test the Coradia iLint in the Netherlands. DEKRA, an independent testing inspection and certification company, has been appointed test leader. This series of tests is being performed at night at up to 140 km/h without passengers. For the purpose of the tests, Engie erected a mobile filling station for refuelling the Coradia iLint with completely green—sustainably produced—hydrogen.
The Coradia iLint is the world’s first regional passenger train to enter service equipped with fuel cells to convert hydrogen and oxygen into electricity, thus eliminating pollutant emissions related to propulsion. The train is completely quiet, and its only emission is water. Purpose-built for use on non-electrified lines, it provides clean, sustainable traction with no sacrifice in performance. It has a range of approximately 1,000 kilometers—the same as equivalent-size diesel multiple units. The train is developed and produced by the Alstom teams in Salzgitter, Germany, and Tarbes, France.
Tomorrow, Saturday, March 7, the Groningen station will welcome the press and public to discover the Coradia iLint at the platform between noon and 4 p.m.
“The tests in the Netherlands demonstrate how our hydrogen train is mature in terms of availability and reliability, providing the same performance as traditional regional trains, but with the benefit of low noise and zero emissions,” said Bernard Belvaux, Managing Director, Alstom Benelux. “It is also easy to integrate in an existing fleet and is compliant with all safety regulations. The Coradia iLint hydrogen train is a reliable, emission-free train ready to help transport us to a carbon-neutral Europe.”