Alstom and ENGIE team up to offer rail freight decarbonisation solution

The Alstom and ENGIE partnership will replace diesel-powered locomotives with hydrogen versions, with European rail freight countries being the target market.

Alstom ENGIE

Credit: Alstom - Left to right - Sébastien Arbola, EVP ENGIE in charge of Thermal Production, Hydrogen & Energy Supply ; Catherine MacGregor, CEO ENGIE ; Henri Poupart-Lafarge, CEO, Alstom ; Raphael Bernardelli, Vice-President, Corporate Strategy, Alstom

Alstom and ENGIE have signed a partnership agreement to offer the rail freight sector a solution for the decarbonisation of mainline operations by replacing diesel-powered locomotives with hydrogen versions. Under the terms of this partnership agreement, Alstom, a pioneer in the field of hydrogen-powered rolling stock, is designing a hydrogen solution based on a high-power fuel cell system that can power electric locomotives on non-electrified sections. ENGIE, a leader in energy transition and renewable gases, is supplying the renewable hydrogen for this solution via the deployment of an innovative supply chain. This partnership will provide a low-carbon, zero-emission solution in response to climate, environmental and public health issues, including on non-electrified branch lines and sidings. The target market is the major European rail freight countries.

Alstom and ENGIE share the ambition to put hydrogen at the heart of rail industry decarbonisation. This has already been successfully demonstrated during the Coradia iLint train test, organised in March 2020 in the Dutch Province of Groningen, where renewable hydrogen was used to refuel a passenger train.

“Our ambition is to accelerate the adoption of hydrogen power in the rail industry by developing innovative solutions that help green heavy-duty mobility operations like rail freight,” Raphaël Bernardelli, Vice President of Corporate Strategy for Alstom, said. “In order to help drive the evolution of the hydrogen rail sector we need to gather stakeholders, and this is exactly why we have decided to partner with ENGIE.”

“After successfully supplying the Coradia iLint during tests in the Netherlands in 2020, we are delighted to continue our efforts with Alstom in decarbonising heavy-duty mobility by combining our respective expertise to serve European rail freight,” Sébastien Arbola, Executive Vice President in charge of Thermal Generation, Hydrogen & Energy Supply for ENGIE, said. “This partnership marks a new step in the development of renewable hydrogen solutions and building a low-carbon economy.”

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