AKASOL will supply battery systems for more than 40 Coradia iLint hydrogen trains (earlier post), which have been ordered from Alstom by the Lower Saxony Transit Authority and the Rhine/Main Regional Transport Association. With this major order in the low double-digit million euro range, AKASOL is expanding its operations in the area of fuel cell powertrains, as well as extending its customer base.
The first battery systems (including heating and cooling equipment, cables and underfloor box) are scheduled for delivery in the second half of 2020, and all 40 systems are expected to be delivered by 2021.
Based in Darmstadt, AKASOL has been engaged in the development of train batteries for more than ten years.
Each Coradia iLint train is equipped with two high-performance battery systems with a total capacity of 220 kWh. The electrical energy generated by braking is stored in AKASOL’s systems and released to the electric engines when the train accelerates.
The combination of hydrogen fuel cells and our intelligent high-performance battery enables continuous storage of the electrical energy generated by the fuel cells as well as dynamic absorption of the high electrical power which is recuperated when braking. The systems not only provide the power needed for propulsion but also supply power for on-board systems like lighting and air conditioning.—Sven Schulz, the CEO of AKASOL AG
The battery system can be charged in a very short time due to its high 3C charging power and features high cycle life and effective thermal management.
The Coradia iLint has been conducting in successful passenger service between Cuxhaven and Buxtehude since September 2018. Since then, it has already traveled more than 150,000 kilometers.
AKASOL and Alstom are convinced that hydrogen fuel cell-based propulsion will prove to be another key driver, alongside pure electric vehicles, on the way towards an emission-free transportation system.
Hydrogen and fuel cells in combination with extremely powerful batteries offer a functional and cleaner alternative to diesel propulsion for non-electrified railways. Our decision to replace the entire diesel fleet in Bremervörde with Alstom’s hydrogen trains makes us a trailblazer in the transportation revolution.—Olaf Lies (SPD), Lower Saxony’s Minister for the Environment, Energy, Construction and Climate Protection
Aside from use in combination with fuel cells, AKASOL’s battery system is also suitable for use in battery-powered electric trains on non-electrified tracks in which the battery is partially recharged with high electrical power while the train is stopped at a station. AKASOL is currently developing this technology together with major railway manufacturers in Germany, Europe, the US and Asia.