Germany starts using zero emission trains

New emission-free trains from Alstom & Bombardier

Both Alstom and Bombardier have developed technologies to ensure that the new zero-emmision trains will be operative in Germany. 

Alstom new Coradia train is the  world's first passenger train to use hydrogen fuel cells for traction power. This zero-emission regional train has very low levels of noise and will only emit steam and condensed water. The train won a GreenTec Mobility Award earlier this year.

This technology makes possible to use diesel trains for operations on non-electrified networks. Alstom signed letters of intent for 60 trains in Germany. Two pre-series Coradia iLint trains started operating in Lower Saxony in September 2018, marking the passenger service entry of the trains, while fleet operation is scheduled to commence in 2021.


On the other hand, Bombardier’s new train can recharge its batteries from the overhead line whilst operating; reducing the use of diesel vehicles on the tracks. In 2019, the next generation of battery-operated trains are expected to be able to cover distances of up to 100km on non-electrified railways. Deutsche Bahn (DB) will start a 12-month trial on these new battery-operated trains. 

The development of these zero emission trains is subsidised by the German federal government in the framework of an innovation programme for electromobility with €4 million. 

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Created Thursday, September 27, 2018


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