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Germany is set to host the world’s first zero-emission, hydrogen passenger train


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The hydrogen, or hydrail, train is set to run in Lower Saxony starting in December 2017.


The train - called the "Coradia iLint" - has been developed over the past two years by French company Alstom.


The hydrogen train operates using a hydrogen fuel tank, stored on the roof of the train, that in turn powers a fuel cell to produce electrical energy. This technology provides a new environmentally friendly alternative to the diesel trains that are still used across much of Germany.


Engineers have been developing ‘hydrail’ technology for the last 15 years, but mostly with freight trains.


The new Alstom train will be the first hydrogen passenger train to regularly operate on long-distance journeys.


With a full tank, the new locomotive will be able to travel 600 to 800 kilometers.


Because of its much larger fuel capacity, the train does not have to confront the same problems that hydro-cars face with refueling. Another advantage is its quietness: even at its top speed of 140 km/h, the only noise is that produced by the motion of the wheels and air resistance.


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