Taking a big step towards the Green Railways mission, the Indian Railways and the Government of India has decided to introduce the country’s first hydrogen-fuelled train by inviting bids for Hydrogen fuel cell based train on Indian Railways Network.
To begin with, two Diesel Electric Multiple Units rakes will be converted, and later two Hybrid narrow gauge locos will also be converted base on Hydrogen Fuel Cell power movement said the ministry.
"There has been recent budgetary pronouncement to kick off the concept of Hydrogen Mobility in the Country. Accepting it as a challenge, the 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." in a press release on Saturday, the Ministry of Railways said.
The project was started keeping in mind with the exclusive programs of the Government's 'Advanced Chemistry Cell Batteries' and 'National Hydrogen Mission', with an objective to cut down on the Green House Gas emission under Paris Climate Agreement 2015 and 'Mission Net Zero Carbon Emission Railway' by 2030, Indian Railways are set to operate trains with hydrogen fuel-based technology.
It is expected that retrofitting of diesel powered DEMU and converting it into hydrogen fuel powered train will not only save the carbon footprint (NO2) of around 11.12 kilo tons per annum but will also save Rs 2.3 crore annually by converting from diesel to hydrogen.
"We'll remove the diesel generator and install a hydrogen fuel cell. Input will change to hydrogen fuel from diesel. It'll be the cleanest form of fuel. If hydrogen is generated from solar it'll be called green power," said SK Saxena, CEO of Railway Energy Management Company Limited.
The bidding date will start from 21 September, 2021, and close on 5 October 2021. On 17 August a pre-bid conference will be held.
Till now, Poland and Germany are the two countries using this method of power generation in their Railways system.
Indian Railways to go green
The project is intended to kick start the Hydrogen mobility in the country