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World’s first hydrogen tram rolls off assembly line

Updated: Mar 20,2015 10:43 AM     Xinhua

World’s first hydrogen-powered tramcar rolled off the assembly line in Qingdao, Shandong province, March 19.[Photo/Xinhua]

QINGDAO — World’s first hydrogen-powered tramcar rolled off the assembly line in Qingdao on March 19.

Liang Jianying, chief engineer of Sifang Co., a wholly-owned subsidiary of China South Rail Corporation (CSR), said the new tram is the only hydrogen powered vehicle in the field, and makes China the only country in the world to have mastered the technology.

World’s first hydrogen-powered tramcar rolled off the assembly line in Qingdao, Shandong province, March 19, 2015.[Photo/Xinhua]

Hydrogen fuel cells are a new clean energy source, widely used in the automobile industry, but lagging behind in the field of rail transit.

“It took two years for Sifang to solve key technological problems, with the help of research institutions,” Liang said.

The tram can be refilled with hydrogen in three minutes and can then run for 100 km at speeds as high as 70 km per hour.

“The average distance of tramcar lines in China is about 15 km, which means one refill for our tram is enough for three round trips,” Liang said, adding the overall running costs will be greatly reduced.

No nitrogen oxides will be produced as the temperature of the reaction inside the fuel cell is controlled under 100 degrees Celsius. Water will be the tram’s only emission, Liang said.

Each tram has over 60 seats and can carry more than 380 passengers.

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