TALGO will undertake trials using a dual-powered hydrogen locomotive hauling five coaches on the outskirts of Madrid, and several lines in Extremadura, western Spain, within the next few months.

The locomotive will be an existing Travca prototype that was originally used for the Renfe 130 series. It will be powered at 3kV dc by the hydrogen cell instead of its pantograph.

There is little spare room in the locomotive and so hydrogen tanks and fuel cells will be fitted in the coaches. The range between refuelling is calculated at around 800km. Fuelling equipment will be rented to the hydrogen provider.

The hydrogen train will weigh 142 tonnes and will operate at up to 140km/h as Talgo is aiming the trials at the suburban and regional markets. Talgo says the lines the train will operate on are quite varied but the steepest is expected to have a 3% gradient.

The Spanish manufacturer’s target is a dual hydrogen and electric passenger train for suburban and regional services, operating on both electrified and non-electrified sections.

Talgo has spent more than €5m in the trial which includes funding from the Spanish Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI).

In late-July Talgo signed an agreement with Repsol to promote a hydrogen-powered train in the Iberian Peninsula. Repsol is one of Spain’s leading producers of hydrogen and operates the largest hydrogen plant in Europe.

The Vittal One, a hydrogen train developed by Talgo, is also due to begin testing in 2023.