Hydrogen switcher locomotive under development in California

Sierra Northern Railway and GTI have joined forces to design, build and test a new hydrogen fuel cell switching locomotive.

Such plans were unveiled earlier this week, when the California Energy Commission awarded the partnership $4m to complete the development that will manoeuvre railroad cars inside a rail yard.

Hoping to encourage widespread commercialisation of such vehicles in the near future, the partnership will use the awarded funds to retire a tier 0 diesel locomotive and to replace it with a zero emission switching locomotive using advanced hydrogen technology.

During the transformation process, the companies will integrate an advanced hydrogen fuel cell, hydrogen storage, advanced battery and systems controls technology to power the major development.

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