Alstom unveils hydrogen fuel cell train Coradia iLint
The new Alstom Coradia iLint has been launched at InnoTrans and is the first in a new generation of zero-emission trains based on the service-proven Coradia Lint 54.

Powered by hydrogen fuel cell technology, the iLint operates with a low level of noise and its only emissions are steam and condensed water, making it an attractive clean alternative to diesel power.

Alstom is one of the first railway manufacturers to develop a passenger train based on such a technology. It did so in just two years following the signing of letters-of-intent with the German Landers of Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Baden-Württemberg, and the Public Transportation Authorities of Hesse, for the use of a new generation of emission-free train equipped with fuel cell drive.

Alstom chairman and CEO, Henri Poupart-Lafarge, said: “Alstom is proud to launch a breakthrough innovation in the field of clean transportation which will complete its Coradia range of regional trains. It shows our ability to work in close collaboration with our customers and develop a train in only two years.”

Coradia iLint will be manufactured in Salzgitter, Alstom’s largest site.

New trains and more carriages needed in East Midlands says report
East Midlands Trains has published a report, The East Midlands: A Railway for Growth, setting out the key high level priorities needed to continue improving rail services across the East Midlands.

The report is based on input from local authorities, major businesses, universities, tourism companies and a range of other key stakeholders across the East Midlands, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire and South Yorkshire. Its recommendations include:

  • Procurement of a new fleet of Intercity style trains to replace the 40-year old High Speed Trains
  • Faster journey times and more seats to London
  • A firm plan agreed to secure additional carriages on regional train routes across Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire and Leicestershire and between Norwich and Liverpool
  • Later evening trains and improved weekend services
  • Improved northbound connectivity from Luton, Bedford and Northamptonshire, and
  • Better airport connections.

The Government’s upcoming plans for the next East Midlands franchise, which starts in 2018, will also include input from public and stakeholder consultation.

Jake Kelly, managing director for the current franchise holder, East Midlands Trains, said: “We are at a critical crossroads for rail services in the East Midlands and we have a great opportunity to work together now to secure the improvements needed for this railway. Whilst there are major improvement plans with HS2 and electrification that we fully support, the proposals we have put together with our stakeholders would deliver fast improvements for our customers and communities whilst offering value for money for the taxpayer.

More information at www.arailwayforgrowth.co.uk

Freightliner to name loco in honour of soldiers who died in the Great War
To mark the 100th anniversary of the armistice, rail freight company Freightliner and model train manufacturer Dapol are collaborating on Project Railway Honour to honour those who died during the Great War, and raise money to help ex-servicemen and women.

Talks are at an advanced stage with two other railway companies so that, in total, three will be involved.

Freightliner is to name one of its Class 66 locomotives and Dapol will produce a detailed scale model of the same locomotive. The three participating locomotives are to be appropriately named Patriot, Valour and Remembrance, and three different models will become available for sale.

For every model sold, a donation will be made to ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, formerly the Army Benevolent Fund.

The project is the brainchild of Corporal Gareth Atkinson who serves in the 1st Battalion of the Mercian Regiment. “I wanted to find a way to commemorate those men who left their protected jobs on the railways to face the horrors of the trenches, and while doing this raise money for service charities to help those service personnel today that need help.”