Image credits: Talgo
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News Article

Talgo Begins Testing Hydrogen Train Prototype

By Antonio Gozain | Tue, 06/07/2022 - 15:10

Passenger train manufacturer Talgo began dynamic testing its dual Vittal-One renewable hydrogen train at its facilities in Las Matas, Madrid. The tests aim to ensure the correct operation of the main composition systems developed in previous stages and to verify the railway traction.

"This is a fundamental milestone for Talgo and for the Spanish railway, which today sees the start of dynamic testing of the first hydrogen train in Spain. The Vittal-One will facilitate emission-free mobility in the country, linking provinces, cities and towns as part of Talgo's commitment to helping operators decarbonize the railway network," said Carlos Palacio Oriol, President, Talgo.

Repsol will provide the infrastructure for generating renewable hydrogen to supply energy to power the train, reported Talgo. In the second phase of the dynamic testing, Talgo and Repsol will validate the technology on a general track, first in Madrid’s urban area and later in Extremadura.

Current tests are carried out in TPH2, a laboratory train consisting of a Talgo Travca multi-system locomotive designed as a prototype vehicle capable of changing gauges and adapting diverse electrification voltages. TPH2 has five cars equipped with hydrogen fuel cell and battery technology, in addition to a laboratory car to control and analyze the testing results.

The first hydrogen-powered train in history, the Coradia iLint, was presented by France’s Alstom in 2016 and entered into commercial service in Germany in 2018. Hydrogen technology is considered an emission-free alternative for non-electrified railway lines, where diesel trains are now operating.

Spain’s Talgo is a leading company in the design, manufacture and maintenance of high-speed light rail trains. The company has industrial presence in Spain, Germany, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia and the US. Talgo is Renfe’s main supplier of high and very high-speed trains.

In 2014, Talgo began talks with the Mexican government to take over a contract of over US$3.2 billion to build a high-speed line that would connect Queretaro and Mexico City. The train project has not materialized.

In Dec. 2020, the Mexican government reached a US$14.4-million agreement with Renfe to collaborate in the development of the Mayan Train. Companies across the world, including Talgo, CAF, Siemens, Bombardier, Huawei, CRRC Zhuzhou Locomotive, China Railway Construction Corporation, Alstom, Thales and Stadler, have been interested in participating in the Mayan Train's infrastructure and train supply tenders.

Photo by:   Talgo
Antonio Gozain Antonio Gozain Journalist and Industry Analyst