Inicio FCEV China’s homegrown hydrogen-powered train completes test run at 160 km/h

China’s homegrown hydrogen-powered train completes test run at 160 km/h

China's homegrown hydrogen-powered train completes test run at 160 km/h

Photo: courtesy of CRRC

Photo: courtesy of CRRC

A domestically developed hydrogen-powered train has completed a test run at full speed in Changchun, Northeast China’s Jilin Province on Thursday, the Global Times learned from CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicles Co.

The train, which reached a speed of 160 kilometers per hour, demonstrated a breakthrough in hydrogen energy use in the rail transportation sector. It will advance China’s independence in high-end railway equipment production and accelerate the building of new quality productive forces.

Unlike traditional trains that rely on fossil fuels or overhead wires as their power sources, this train has an onboard hydrogen power system to provide sustainable and efficient energy. The train’s energy consumption was measured at 5 kilowatt-hours per kilometer, meeting international standards and showcasing a good level of energy efficiency, according to experts. 

It utilizes a hybrid power supply system with multiple energy storage and hydrogen systems, as well as a hydrogen-electric hybrid energy management strategy developed by CRRC Changchun. The integration of different systems significantly improves energy efficiency, flexibility and reliability, and the maximum range can exceed 1,000 kilometers.

CRRC Changchun has conducted various tests on the train’s key components, as well as its energy consumption, reliability, traction, braking and dynamics at different speeds. These tests proved that the train can operate at temperatures between -25 C and 35 C, and that it meets the design requirements, said Wang Jian, an expert from CRRC Changchun.

Hydrogen-powered vehicles are clean, easy to maintain, quick to build and require a smaller initial investment. They can operate at high speeds and integrate smart safety features, which make them ideal to connect city hubs, experts said.

China is accelerating the development of hydrogen energy. So far, 22 provinces have included hydrogen energy in their government work reports, Chinese media outlet reported.

For example, South China’s Guangdong Province plans to accelerate the production, storage, transportation, refueling and manufacturing of hydrogen fuel cell equipment for low-carbon industrial applications. East China’s Zhejiang Province plans to build 50 hydrogen refueling stations by 2025.

Sales of hydrogen-fueled vehicles reached 5,800 in 2023, a 72 percent increase from the previous year. December saw record-breaking monthly sales of 1,500 vehicles, up 149.1 percent year-on-year.

Global Times