Going greener and more sustainable towards the environment, the Indian Railways is introducing a green revolution and will be introducing hydrogen and electric trains to the eight heritage routes in the country by December 2023. The Union Minister for Railways Ashwini Vaishnaw confirmed this recently. These hydrogen trains will include the modified version of steam engines, that will be back on tracks, equipped with vintage sirens and green steam vapours.
Initial Routes Where Hydrogen Trains Run:
Talking about this initiative, Vaishnaw added that the new trains will run on the routes of Kalka-Shimla Railways, Nilgiri Mountain Railways, Darjeeling Hills, Kangra Railways, Bilimora Waghai, Mhow-Patalpani, Marwar-devgarh-Madriya and Matheran Hill Railways in Maharashtra.
The Development of Hydrogen Trains:
Hydrogen engines have been developed by a few countries like Germany, France and China, and now India will also be a part of this, the minister added. Talking about the modification, the coaches of new trains will be retro-fitted, induced with hydrogen-propulsion engines that will be used for commercial purposes by the end of the year.
As a pilot project, the railways is manufacturing a prototype of hydrogen fuel-based train at the Northern Railway workshop. It would be test-run on the Sonipat-Jind section in Haryana.