ShaneJNadler
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Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 5:12 am

I came across Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train recently. Can someone explain to me how exactly they work? What difference and advantage does it have from the conventional trains?
 
tommy1808
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 7:13 am

The Coradia iLint is curently in revenue service from Bremervörde to Buxtehude, replaced Diesel trains.

The advantages are
- much quieter
- higher acceleration (for regional trains that does magic for the schedule)
- no city center pollution
- no idle time
- no less than peak efficiency partial load
- those two lead to overall less CO2, since that more than balances out the inefficiency of hydrogen production.

best regards
Thomas
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Channex757
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 7:45 am

Combined with battery storage, the fuel cell train can also save huge amounts of energy. Instead of using traction motor braking and then just discharging that energy through load banks on the roof, the energy from braking can be captured in a battery in the same way electric cars do.

There is also no need to have an engine idling at a stop.
 
WIederling
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:23 pm

Channex757 wrote:
... Instead of using traction motor braking and then just discharging that energy through load banks on the roof, .. .


Just a note: recuperative breaking is state of the art for (catenary/third rail) electric railroad traction today.
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WildcatYXU
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:29 pm

WIederling wrote:
Channex757 wrote:
... Instead of using traction motor braking and then just discharging that energy through load banks on the roof, .. .


Just a note: recuperative breaking is state of the art for (catenary/third rail) electric railroad traction today.


Firstly, it is braking. Just as devices used to slow down or stop a vehicle are brakes, not breaks.
Secondly, you should say well working regenerative braking is state of art. Regenerative braking in general is not, it has been around for as long as the electrical traction. However, if it's not well done, it may lead to all kinds of problems. The SZD was using regenerative braking for ages. But it was quite rudimentary and they routinely had about 5kV in the catenary instead of 3kV.
I wonder how it works on AC systems, however...
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tommy1808
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:42 pm

WildcatYXU wrote:
WIederling wrote:
Channex757 wrote:
... Instead of using traction motor braking and then just discharging that energy through load banks on the roof, .. .


Just a note: recuperative breaking is state of the art for (catenary/third rail) electric railroad traction today.


Firstly, it is braking. Just as devices used to slow down or stop a vehicle are brakes, not breaks.
Secondly, you should say well working regenerative braking is state of art. Regenerative braking in general is not, it has been around for as long as the electrical traction. However, if it's not well done, it may lead to all kinds of problems. The SZD was using regenerative braking for ages. But it was quite rudimentary and they routinely had about 5kV in the catenary instead of 3kV.
I wonder how it works on AC systems, however...


Plus it only works if there is a way to get the power used in that segment or transfer it somewhere else. On a regional track that is often not the case. For these trains, replacing diesels it isn't an option without batteries.

Best regards
Thomas
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GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:49 pm

How expensive is this? Where and how do they produce the hydrogen?

GF
 
WIederling
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:57 pm

WildcatYXU wrote:
WIederling wrote:
Channex757 wrote:
... Instead of using traction motor braking and then just discharging that energy through load banks on the roof, .. .


Just a note: recuperative breaking is state of the art for (catenary/third rail) electric railroad traction today.


Firstly, it is braking. Just as devices used to slow down or stop a vehicle are brakes, not breaks.

Thank you very much. I bow to my Grammar N* Overloards
Secondly, you should say well working regenerative braking is state of art. Regenerative braking in general is not, it has been around for as long as the electrical traction. However, if it's not well done, it may lead to all kinds of problems. The SZD was using regenerative braking for ages. But it was quite rudimentary and they routinely had about 5kV in the catenary instead of 3kV.
I wonder how it works on AC systems, however...


SZD as in "Sovetskie Zheleznye Dorogi" ??

With modern VFD controllers multi system supply and recuperative braking has become easy.

If your system voltage goes over the top your system design is broken.
Either the vehicle control needs to switch over to resistive braking or
the central supply coupler needs to activate a resistive load on the supply line
for the lack of an adequate power sink ( by way of other trains sourcing power
to accelerate or just sustain current speed.)
Keeping Shannon in mind this is more of an issue for smallish systems then for country size supply grids
like the 15kV 16 2/3Hz /Austrian/German/Swiss/++ System.

Recuperative braking for rail systems, historic and current, Unfortunately only in German:
https://web.archive.org/web/20050213084 ... rgie_1.htm
https://web.archive.org/web/20050220035 ... rgie_2.htm
google translate should produce something readable though.
Murphy is an optimist
 
tommy1808
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 4:08 pm

GalaxyFlyer wrote:
How expensive is this? Where and how do they produce the hydrogen?

GF


More expensive than running of overhead wire (sans cost for those) and cheaper than running on diesel, which is fairly inefficient for regional stop and go traffic patterns.
CO2 emissions depend on energy source, from almost CO2 free to somewhat lower than running on diesel, as the efficiency gains from running on electricity outweigh the inefficiency of making hydrogen out of fossil fuels, as most is today. Probably about as good as a hybrid diesel train would be, that without the noise, weight and particulate emissions advantage of fuel cells.

Best regards
Thomas
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Kiwirob
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 4:18 pm

Hydrogen will also be the future of heavy trucking. I’m a big believer in the hydrogen economy, BEV’s are a side road in the evolution of transport.
 
WIederling
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 4:40 pm

Kiwirob wrote:
Hydrogen will also be the future of heavy trucking. I’m a big believer in the hydrogen economy, BEV’s are a side road in the evolution of transport.


the charging part of the fuel cycle is inefficient.
i.e. creating hydrogen is costly.not only in existing tech but also in theory
fuel cell efficiency is limited. not only in existing tech but also in theory.
( though much better than any Carnot process engines.)

The fuel cycle for electric batteries is less limited. over 90% touching on 98%.
e-motors hug near 100%
semiconductors for power circuits get better all the time. ( and are pushed not only
by traction applications but currently much more by green energy power conversion.)

fuel cells can have a place in longer range transport as a staged element.
but anything that would gain from recuperation will have batteries.
( finding the right balance will be at the core.)
Murphy is an optimist
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 4:59 pm

Free hydrogen must be manufactured, non-leaking pipelines for hydrogen are very expensive, then it must be stored (also expensive), delivery systems to ultimate customers are also expensive, storage may be heavy and expensive (but trains can carry a lot of weight and even have room for storage), last stage efficiency is excellent. But efficiency from start to finish is usually not. Trains might be able to often load it close where it is manufactured.

Per futurists, it competes with solar and wind electricity which transmits with good efficiency, and batteries which are getting ever cheaper. Better batteries which can be charged faster will be a formidable competitor for hydrogen. That said, hydrogen will have advantages in particular niches, and some of those niches are big.
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Redd
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 6:34 pm

Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.
 
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Channex757
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 6:37 pm

Hyundai are working down a promising avenue of building long distance passenger buses with fuel cell technology. Batteries would work well in cities, with the fuel cells providing range extension out on highways for those inter-city long routes.
 
Magog
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 7:03 pm

A big problem with hydrogen is energy density.
 
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Tugger
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:02 pm

Honestly fuel cells will not be competitive for wide scale use until they can use a fuel source that is stored at ambient temperature.

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WildcatYXU
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:05 pm

Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Actually, the hydrogen powered train is a solution to a problem Germany is working very hard to create. That's usage of generally unreliable renewable energy sources. You see, if you have an electrified rail line, you have to generate the necessary power right when it is being used. But wind, for example, will only generate power when it blows. And you can't fill every alpine valley with water in order to build pumping hydro stations. Batteries could be a solution, but in the current form they can store zero point nothing. However, if you produce hydrogen using that energy, you can store a lot of it and put it to good use when needed.
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stl07
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:22 pm

I heard from my "source" that liberals want to use these to replace cars and make them illegal, just like they want to use high speed trains to make planes illegal. What a bunch of lunatics
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Dutchy
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:37 pm

stl07 wrote:
I heard from my "source" that liberals want to use these to replace cars and make them illegal, just like they want to use high speed trains to make planes illegal. What a bunch of lunatics


Seems like a reliable "source" :lol:
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:39 pm

WildcatYXU wrote:
Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Actually, the hydrogen powered train is a solution to a problem Germany is working very hard to create. That's usage of generally unreliable renewable energy sources. You see, if you have an electrified rail line, you have to generate the necessary power right when it is being used. But wind, for example, will only generate power when it blows. And you can't fill every alpine valley with water in order to build pumping hydro stations. Batteries could be a solution, but in the current form they can store zero point nothing. However, if you produce hydrogen using that energy, you can store a lot of it and put it to good use when needed.


The problem of 24h imbalance and the summer/winter imbalance hasn't been solved. Perhaps hydrogen could offer part of the solution.
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
tommy1808
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 6:29 am

Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Because doing so would be more expensive than using hydrogen trains. Where ever traffic volume is high enough rail lijes pretty pretty much are already electrified.
Overhead wires are not exactly cheap to build and to maintain.

WildcatYXU wrote:
Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Actually, the hydrogen powered train is a solution to a problem Germany is working very hard to create. That's usage of generally unreliable renewable energy sources.


Funny how the grid has only gotten more reliable since renewables where introduced for real...

You see, if you have an electrified rail line, you have to generate the necessary power right when it is being used.


Like with everything on the grid.

However, if you produce hydrogen using that energy, you can store a lot of it and put it to good use when needed.


Best of two worlds, the long term availability of burning fuel combined with the superior short term reliability of solar and wind.

Best regards
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Channex757
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 7:30 am

Another possibility is forking the technology that came from the Shuttle, or rather from scientists who worked for NASA on fuel cells. https://www.bloomenergy.com/

These fuel cells are currently fixed but there is no reason why they couldn't be put onto trains. They were a mobile power concept after all. Bloom has designed a cell that also can use different fuels.

Even if they were to run on CNG or some other gas fuel they would still be vastly cleaner than diesel, and more efficient.
 
WIederling
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 10:14 am

Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


You have to weigh the cost for installing a catenary (1..2m€/km) and its upkeep
against the _increased_ cost of hybrid traction rolling stock.
( add the militant Nimby fraction that likes to protest any (visible) change. )
40% of railroads (quite often low traffic routes ) in Germany are not electrified.
Multi System traction is quite a bit more flexible to use.
Murphy is an optimist
 
Redd
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 12:36 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Because doing so would be more expensive than using hydrogen trains. Where ever traffic volume is high enough rail lijes pretty pretty much are already electrified.
Overhead wires are not exactly cheap to build and to maintain.


Best regards
Thomas


Up front cost might be more expensive, but thinking about the development costs & maintenance costs on such a complicated piece of machinery, not to mention all of the costs associated with producing, delivering and and storing the fuel, I imagine that over 5-10 years that investment of building a grid would pay itself off. It seems like a cheaper short term solution, not so much long term.
 
ltbewr
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 12:55 pm

Sadly, Hydrogen suffers from the 'Hindenberg effect', net negative energy benefits in its production but may have benefits in certain circumstances. I doubt that Hydrogen trains would be allowed in long tunnels, like under the Hudson and East Rivers in the NYC area used by commuter rail.

Regional 'commuter' rail like here in the NYC metro area uses 3rd Rail, overhead wire and diesel trains, each with advantages and disadvantages. 3rd Rail and overhead wire electric is expensive to set up and affected by bad weather including extreme cold, heat, snow, ice and wind. Diesel is dirty even still with the latest controls and systems to reduce pollution. Hydrogen could be an option as cleaner and not needing the wire/3rd rail infrastructure.
 
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 2:40 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
Funny how the grid has only gotten more reliable since renewables where introduced for real...


So you can now have wind of a proper speed when you need it? Well, the czechoslovak commies promised controlling the weather in the fifties, bu I didn't know you guys have gone that far.

tommy1808 wrote:
You see, if you have an electrified rail line, you have to generate the necessary power right when it is being used.

Like with everything on the grid.



That's a very Captain Obvious - like remark, Thomas

tommy1808 wrote:

However, if you produce hydrogen using that energy, you can store a lot of it and put it to good use when needed.


Best of two worlds, the long term availability of burning fuel combined with the superior short term reliability of solar and wind.

Best regards
Thomas


I wouldn't call the reliability of solar and especially wind exactly superior, but it is indeed the ideal combination. As long as the hydrogen is indeed generated using energy from renewable sources.
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 2:47 pm

Redd wrote:
Up front cost might be more expensive, but thinking about the development costs & maintenance costs on such a complicated piece of machinery, not to mention all of the costs associated with producing, delivering and and storing the fuel, I imagine that over 5-10 years that investment of building a grid would pay itself off. It seems like a cheaper short term solution, not so much long term.


Hey, you're looking at the problem from a wrong point of view. Railways with overhead wires were around for over 100 years. It's a proven technology, not something new and cool. So it is impossible to get subsidies from taxpayer's money to do it. Well, as long as the railway is not government owned. In that case the cost is not a problem. See, for example, the rail route between Mezozombor and Satoraljaujhely
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Redd
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sat Feb 09, 2019 4:37 pm

WildcatYXU wrote:
Redd wrote:
Up front cost might be more expensive, but thinking about the development costs & maintenance costs on such a complicated piece of machinery, not to mention all of the costs associated with producing, delivering and and storing the fuel, I imagine that over 5-10 years that investment of building a grid would pay itself off. It seems like a cheaper short term solution, not so much long term.


Hey, you're looking at the problem from a wrong point of view. Railways with overhead wires were around for over 100 years. It's a proven technology, not something new and cool. So it is impossible to get subsidies from taxpayer's money to do it. Well, as long as the railway is not government owned. In that case the cost is not a problem. See, for example, the rail route between Mezozombor and Satoraljaujhely


I"m not exactly how EU funding works with electrification of rail projects, but building/modernizing infrastructure is mostly co-financed financed by the EU. Like you said, electrified rail has been around for over 100 years and it works. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Doesn't matter how new or cool a hybrid train is, I can't see the necessity being justified. German rail is technically government owned.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:18 am

Redd wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:
Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Because doing so would be more expensive than using hydrogen trains. Where ever traffic volume is high enough rail lijes pretty pretty much are already electrified.
Overhead wires are not exactly cheap to build and to maintain.


Best regards
Thomas


Up front cost might be more expensive, but thinking about the development costs & maintenance costs on such a complicated piece of machinery, not to mention all of the costs associated with producing, delivering and and storing the fuel, I imagine that over 5-10 years that investment of building a grid would pay itself off. It seems like a cheaper short term solution, not so much long term.


Overhead wires cost maintenance too. These trains run on tracks that see two trains/hour during day time. You'd be maintaining 30km of overhead wire vs. maintaining one hydrogen train.

WildcatYXU wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:
Funny how the grid has only gotten more reliable since renewables where introduced for real...


So you can now have wind of a proper speed when you need it? Well, the czechoslovak commies promised controlling the weather in the fifties, bu I didn't know you guys have gone that far.


I merely stated a fact, that being the grid becoming constantly more reliable, despite more and more renewable in the mix. If your claim, renewables making power supply less reliable, held any water, that would not be the case.
In the last 10 years average annual power outage per consumer was 15 min, down from over 20 minutes 10 years ago. Most of that is due to extrem weather events, not supply fluctuation. Only the Swiss grid is more reliable in Europe, depending on reliable nuclear power France has three times that.

I wouldn't call the reliability of solar and especially wind exactly superior, but it is indeed the ideal combination. As long as the hydrogen is indeed generated using energy from renewable sources.


It is hard to predict how much power you get from solar and wind in a week or this time tomorrow, but you can very accurately predict how much you will have in one hour. That is short term reliability. Ultimate capacity risk is much lower, as even the biggest wind turbine bursting into flames or the biggest solar farm going offline because a truck ran into its transformer, does diddly squat to the power supply, an conventional plant going into unscheduled shutdown does.

Redd wrote:
WildcatYXU wrote:
Redd wrote:
Up front cost might be more expensive, but thinking about the development costs & maintenance costs on such a complicated piece of machinery, not to mention all of the costs associated with producing, delivering and and storing the fuel, I imagine that over 5-10 years that investment of building a grid would pay itself off. It seems like a cheaper short term solution, not so much long term.


Hey, you're looking at the problem from a wrong point of view. Railways with overhead wires were around for over 100 years. It's a proven technology, not something new and cool. So it is impossible to get subsidies from taxpayer's money to do it. Well, as long as the railway is not government owned. In that case the cost is not a problem. See, for example, the rail route between Mezozombor and Satoraljaujhely


I"m not exactly how EU funding works with electrification of rail projects, but building/modernizing infrastructure is mostly co-financed financed by the EU.


There is almost always tax payer money involved as a macroeconomic return is much easier to achieve than a microeconomic one. Subsidies in public transport are only paid if there is such a return. While pilot operation maybe funded as research, the communities here are planning a full roll out, and that will only be subsidized if it is judged to be more effective than the alternative, in this case likely electrification of the line.

Best regards
Thomas
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Kiwirob
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sun Feb 10, 2019 8:27 am

Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Building the infrastructure for electric traction costs a fortune, then you have to buy the trains to run on it. It’s cost Auckland about 1.2 billion NZD to electricfy the commuter rail network.
 
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WildcatYXU
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sun Feb 10, 2019 3:26 pm

tommy1808 wrote:

It is hard to predict how much power you get from solar and wind in a week or this time tomorrow, but you can very accurately predict how much you will have in one hour. That is short term reliability. Ultimate capacity risk is much lower, as even the biggest wind turbine bursting into flames or the biggest solar farm going offline because a truck ran into its transformer, does diddly squat to the power supply, an conventional plant going into unscheduled shutdown does.


Best regards
Thomas


Of course, the biggest wind turbine bursting into flames means didley squat, as the world's largest wind turbine has 8MW of installed power. The largest wind farm has what? 100MW of installed power?
And that's installed, not what you can really expect any part of the day. So how can you even compare shutting down these with an entire conventional power station going off line? Do you expect to be taken seriously after that?
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frmrCapCadet
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:56 pm

WildcatYXU wrote:
Redd wrote:
Up front cost might be more expensive, but thinking about the development costs & maintenance costs on such a complicated piece of machinery, not to mention all of the costs associated with producing, delivering and and storing the fuel, I imagine that over 5-10 years that investment of building a grid would pay itself off. It seems like a cheaper short term solution, not so much long term.


Hey, you're looking at the problem from a wrong point of view. Railways with overhead wires were around for over 100 years. It's a proven technology, not something new and cool. So it is impossible to get subsidies from taxpayer's money to do it. Well, as long as the railway is not government owned. In that case the cost is not a problem. See, for example, the rail route between Mezozombor and Satoraljaujhely


Milwaukee RR went broke, and their electrified lines were part of the problem. Overhead lines are wretchedly expensive to maintain. If there is frequent traffic that expense is justified. Seattle's trolleys do great on those old runs going back almost a hundred years. (they are buses with overhead wires). But they have done even better because the new ones also have batteries. So now Seattle DOT can actually close a street and the bus can do a detour. I don't have an actual figure, but I suspect overhead wires need traffic per hour, not just traffic per day.
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af773atmsp
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sun Feb 10, 2019 8:45 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
WildcatYXU wrote:
Redd wrote:
Up front cost might be more expensive, but thinking about the development costs & maintenance costs on such a complicated piece of machinery, not to mention all of the costs associated with producing, delivering and and storing the fuel, I imagine that over 5-10 years that investment of building a grid would pay itself off. It seems like a cheaper short term solution, not so much long term.


Hey, you're looking at the problem from a wrong point of view. Railways with overhead wires were around for over 100 years. It's a proven technology, not something new and cool. So it is impossible to get subsidies from taxpayer's money to do it. Well, as long as the railway is not government owned. In that case the cost is not a problem. See, for example, the rail route between Mezozombor and Satoraljaujhely


Milwaukee RR went broke, and their electrified lines were part of the problem. Overhead lines are wretchedly expensive to maintain. If there is frequent traffic that expense is justified. Seattle's trolleys do great on those old runs going back almost a hundred years. (they are buses with overhead wires). But they have done even better because the new ones also have batteries. So now Seattle DOT can actually close a street and the bus can do a detour. I don't have an actual figure, but I suspect overhead wires need traffic per hour, not just traffic per day.


I thought I read it was a big and costly mistake for the Milwaukee Road to dismantle the electrified segment in the Rockies, and that led to the complete abandonment of their trackage in the Rockies and Pacific Northwest.

If hydrogen fuel cell trains are proven to work, this would be really good news for U.S. cities trying to develop light rail and commuter rail systems but don't want to pay for electrified routes and the only other option at present is diesel. For Minnesota not only is there the extremely high cost of electrifying rail routes, but if there's ice or a fallen tree that could cause chaos on the rail system.
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c933103
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Sun Feb 10, 2019 11:30 pm

Note that, battery(/supercapacitor)-powered train is already a thing, see for example JR Kyushu's BEC819 series train in Japan or the Kaohsiung LRT system in Taiwan. Notably the Kaohsiung system is also using technology provided by Alstom, aka the manufacturer that propose this Hydrail concept.
The Kaohsiung system used supercapacitors, which is suitable for the light rail network that have many stops with short interval and thus can be charged frequently and fastly. I guess having fuel cell instead of supercapacitors as the power storage can enable the trains to be used on systems that have a larger distance between different stops which could be too much for supercapacitors to handle.
As for the advantage of using battery power instead of catenary, a notable advantage is that those LRT will no longer need catenary which are frequently a subject of complaints by local neighborhood. Scenery can remain undisturbed by using battery instead of catenary to deliver power.
 
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DocLightning
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:03 am

frmrCapCadet wrote:
Per futurists, it competes with solar and wind electricity which transmits with good efficiency, and batteries which are getting ever cheaper. Better batteries which can be charged faster will be a formidable competitor for hydrogen. That said, hydrogen will have advantages in particular niches, and some of those niches are big.


At present, the big advantage of hydrogen over batteries is higher energy density (H2 has a higher energy density per unit mass than hydrocarbon fuel, but not per unit volume...and that doesn't take into account the weight of the storage tanks, which are much heavier than tanks for storing gasoline or diesel fuel) and faster replenishment time.

Fuel cells in general can offer >80% energy recovery with minimal to no side-reactions. But, as has been stated, generation of H2 is inefficient and transport and storage are challenging (although not much more challenging than natural gas).

For an application like a train or a ship, batteries just don't store enough energy. I think it would make more sense to just electrify the tracks.
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tommy1808
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:05 am

WildcatYXU wrote:
Of course, the biggest wind turbine bursting into flames means didley squat, as the world's largest wind turbine has 8MW of installed power. The largest wind farm has what? 100MW of installed power?
And that's installed, not what you can really expect any part of the day. So how can you even compare shutting down these with an entire conventional power station going off line? Do you expect to be taken seriously after that?


How do you expect to be taken serious when you move the goal post around all the time? That renewable are so awfully distributed is why they improve grid stability. They make for a good combination, as is evident by grid stability.

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Aesma
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:27 am

Dutchy wrote:
WildcatYXU wrote:
Redd wrote:
Why not just build more electrified rail? Hybrid trains seem like a solution to a problem which doesn't exist.


Actually, the hydrogen powered train is a solution to a problem Germany is working very hard to create. That's usage of generally unreliable renewable energy sources. You see, if you have an electrified rail line, you have to generate the necessary power right when it is being used. But wind, for example, will only generate power when it blows. And you can't fill every alpine valley with water in order to build pumping hydro stations. Batteries could be a solution, but in the current form they can store zero point nothing. However, if you produce hydrogen using that energy, you can store a lot of it and put it to good use when needed.


The problem of 24h imbalance and the summer/winter imbalance hasn't been solved. Perhaps hydrogen could offer part of the solution.


But what would make sense then is to build a combined plant : renewable source (wind and solar for example) + hydrogen production + storage + fuel cell, that way you have more regular electricity production for your grid, and hydrogen is just a local storage medium, no losses in transporting it, no need to find applications for it.

I know there is such a small scale plant in the south of France. They don't just store hydrogen but also oxygen from water electrolysis.
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Aesma
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:39 am

As for grid outages, I'm not sure of the numbers I'm seeing, there are no grid outages in France ever, well recently there almost was one apparently, but almost.

Some places might lose electricity, usually because some utility poles fell due to weather, that happens everywhere. Many places have underground networks and never experience such issues, but isolated villages and small towns might not be there yet.
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tommy1808
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Mon Feb 11, 2019 7:02 am

Aesma wrote:
As for grid outages, I'm not sure of the numbers I'm seeing, there are no grid outages in France ever, well recently there almost was one apparently, but almost.

Some places might lose electricity, usually because some utility poles fell due to weather, that happens everywhere. Many places have underground networks and never experience such issues, but isolated villages and small towns might not be there yet.


France has 50 min/year/user on average, about 1/3 of it planned, without exceptional events (i.e. weather) 7th most stable grid in the EU, pretty exactly on par with Spain. Outages in France a rare, 0.2/year/customer, but when the power goes out they are relatively long.
https://www.ceer.eu/documents/104400/-/ ... f1552dd34c

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WIederling
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Re: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Train

Mon Feb 11, 2019 8:32 am

Aesma wrote:
I know there is such a small scale plant in the south of France. They don't just store hydrogen but also oxygen from water electrolysis.


Some proof of concept things around here too ( Northern Germany ) to sink power generated
by wind turbines ( or solar ) when the grid path down to the sinks in southern Germany is saturated.
Idea is to not store the hydrogen but to feed it into the Natural Gas distribution network.
( Same for biogas sources. gas distribution here has near to electric grid coverage.)
Murphy is an optimist

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