In a huge step toward green mobility in India, the Indian Railways Organisation of Alternative Fuels (IROAF) has requested proposals for a Hydrogen Fuel Cell-based Train on the Indian Railways Network, which will be used to see if diesel-powered trains can be replaced by hydrogen-powered trains.
The technology will be tested on the Northern Railway’s 89-kilometer Sonipat-Jind segment using a Diesel Electric Multiple Unit (DEMU).
Notably, two DEMU rakes will be converted first, followed by the conversion of two Hybrid locos using Hydrogen Fuel Cell power. In addition, the driving console will remain unchanged.
The government also stated that this strategy is currently used by only a few countries. One rake is currently undergoing testing in Germany, while the other is currently through testing in Poland.
“Indian Railways Organization of Alternate Fuel (IROAF), Green Fuel vertical of Indian Railways, has invited the bids for Hydrogen Fuel Cell based Train on Railways Network. The project shall commence in 89km Sonipat-Jind section of Northern Railway,” the Union Ministry of Railways said in a statement.
“The retrofitting of diesel-powered DEMU and converting it into hydrogen fuel-powered train set will not only save the cost to the tune of ₹2.3 crore annually by converting from diesel to hydrogen, but also save the carbon footprint (NO2) of 11.12 kilo tons per annum and particulate matter of 0.72 kilo tonnes per annum,” the ministry added.