FCH2Rail Project Tests Bi-Mode Hydrogen Train on Spanish Railway Network

The FCH2Rail project has commenced the first test runs of its bi-mode hydrogen train on the Zaragoza-Canfranc line on Spain’s rail network.

This project is being carried out by a consortium made up of CAF, DLR, Toyota, Renfe, Adif, CNH2, IP and Stemmann-Technik with a budget of 14 million EUR.

It involves the development of a bi-mode Renfe Civia demonstrator train in which CAF has installed a new power-generation system that uses energy from hydrogen fuel cells and batteries.

CAF Hydrogen Train
The demonstrator train is based on one of Renfe’s existing commuter trains, but features a new power generation system

This unit has now achieved an important milestone by obtaining authorisation to run tests on the Spanish national railway network.

Having completed the first of its planned routes on the Zaragoza-Canfranc line, operating in electric mode on electrified sections and in hybrid mode using energy from hydrogen fuel cells and batteries on the non-electrified sections, the demonstrator train has become the first train to operate on this network using hydrogen power.

This is particularly noteworthy because the Canfranc line is a demanding undertaking due to its steep and high gradients.

These tests will also now continue on lines in Madrid and Galicia during a new stage of on-track testing. This will test the new technology in a wide range of power and energy demand conditions, simulating different commercial services.

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