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From the lab to the rail

Scientists from the HI ERN are planning hydrogen trains powered by the LOHC-technology.

Rail tracksCopyright: hxdyl - stock.adobe.com

A large portion of the rail network in Germany is not electrified, especially sections in the short-distance traffic. A huge number of this rails will not be electrified in the future because some of these are not fit electric locomotives or an electrification is not economically feasible or too time consuming. A solution for this part of the rail network are hydrogen trains. However, for hydrogen a totally new infrastructure would have to be installed along the rail network. LOHC (“Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carrier”) would work as a save, sustainable returnable bottle for the otherwise volatile hydrogen. One Liter of LOHC is able to safely store up to 650 L of hydrogen. The scientists of HI ERN aim to fuel the locomotives directly with the loaded LOHC. The stored hydrogen would be catalytically released on-demand and used the energy supply of the train. Besides the catalytic release on-Board, the scientists of HI ERN follow a very innovative approach: the Direct LOHC-fuel cell. A chemical conversion unit for the hydrogen release would no longer be needed. This approach has already been tested in the labs of HI ERN.

Link to german press release: Pressemitteilung "Aus dem Labor auf die Schiene"

Contact persons:

Prof. Dr. Peter Wasserscheid
Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH
Director Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg (HI ERN)
Phone: 09131 85-20843
E-Mail: p.wasserscheid@fz-juelich.de

Dr.-Ing. Patrick Preuster
Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH
Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg (HI ERN)
Phone: 09131 85-67421
E-Mail: p.preuster@fz-juelich.de

Contact for press:

Tobias Schlößer
Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH
Phone.: 0461 61-4771
E-Mail: t.schloesser@fz-juelich.de

Dr. Susanne Spörler
Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH
Helmholtz Institute Erlangen-Nürnberg (HI ERN)
Phone: 09131 85-20249
E-Mail: s.spoerler@fz-juelich.de

Additional Information