Investment in hydrogen trains is vital to improve air quality but must not be seen as an “easy replacement” for electrification schemes, says The Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE).
In The Future for Hydrogen Trains in the UK, published on February 7, the organisation says the Government must rethink its cancellation of electrification programmes and move forward with a more innovative and “long-term, rolling programme” approach.
However, it also urges the rail industry to encourage the development and deployment of hydrogen trains and their fuelling and servicing facilities, and that the technology is developed in industrial areas where hydrogen production already occurs and can support the wider transport system (such as hydrogen-powered buses).
The report also questions whether the production of hydrogen means it is truly environmentally friendly, with just 4% of the global total produced by electrolysis.
For the FULL story, read RAIL 873, published on February 27, and available digitally on Android, iPad and Kindle from February 23.