Deutsche Bahn’s H2goesRail joint venture project with Simens Mobility has developed a completely new hydrogen system for rail.
Changes in driving technology do not just happen on the road. Even though the railways are already heavily dependent on electric railways, there are still many diesel trains on our railways. Deutsche Bahn wants to take steps to address here the new hydrogen concept. The Mireo Plus H hydrogen train that is currently being presented is intended to assist Deutsche Bahn in finishing diesel. The development partner was Siemens Mobility.
800 km distance to fill the tank
However, Mireo Plus H is only part of the overall hydrogen system that was developed as part of the joint H2goesRail project. A new mobile hydraulic trailer was also introduced. Vehicle and appropriate infrastructure are intended to replace most diesel units in regional transportation and reduce CO₂ emissions on the railways to zero.
The Mireo Plus H of the H2goesRail project has a range of up to 800 kilometers as a two-part car, is as powerful as most electrical units and technology of its fuel cell as well as a lithium-ion battery and is characterized by fast driving. power of 1.7 MW at speeds of up to 1.1 m / s² and high speeds of up to 160 km / h. The three-car variant has a range of 1,000 miles.
Mobile hydrogen filling station
However, since the railways currently do not have a complete hydrogen infrastructure, the new system also includes the aforementioned hydrogen filling station, whose fuel filling for the hydrogen train is as fast as adding fuel to a large diesel unit. The train speaks for about 15 minutes. The mobile design also enables more locations on routes that have not been developed before.
Mireo Plus H will begin testing in Baden-Württemberg from 2023. From 2024 it will be on the road for the H2goesRail project in the regular passenger service between Tübingen, Horb and Pforzheim, replacing the diesel railway that runs there. Approximately 120,000 miles of standard rail service is planned. The method is particularly suitable because of the timing of the schedule, which is typical of local traffic, and different topography.
Hydrogen for train operation is provided in Tübingen by DB Energie using green lightning directly from the top line. However, hydrogen technology becomes environmentally friendly only when trains are run by so-called green hydrogen, which is generated electronically from renewable sources. Using the H2goesRail project model, Deutsche Bahn calculates approximately 330 tons of CO2 emissions per year on the route between Tübingen and Pforzheim for diesel emissions. Overall, the Mireo Plus H can save 520 tons per year (calculated at a mileage of 200,000 miles), depending on the route profile. In order to be able to service the train, DB operates in Ulm will be equipped accordingly.
Yes, that is electricity mobility without storage losses and charge times.
No, it is not very effective, it is very expensive and hydrogen does not store well for long.
For a long time, Deutsche Bahn wanted to replace diesel railway carriages and structures with hydrogen fuel cells. With Mireo Plus H, the first hydrogen train has now been introduced. However, because the railways do not have a complete hydrogen infrastructure, the mobile hydrogen filling station was developed at the same time. The first test pilots are scheduled to start in 2023, followed by the first regular operation on selected route in 2024. This will make the railway green – but probably not over time.