German government tasks TÜV Rheinland InterTraffic with developing standards for hydrogen applications in rail vehicles
The German Center for Rail Transport Research at the Federal Railway Office has tasked TÜV Rheinland InterTraffic with developing a standard for hydrogen applications in rail vehicles. TÜV Rheinland is one of the world’s leading testing and certification service providers, and has more than 21,400 employees and an annual turnover of €2.1 billion.
Various new challenges are currently arising with the increased use of alternative drives in rail transport. In particular, the use of fuel cell technology and the associated handling of hydrogen require new safety concepts. Regulatory and technical requirements are required to guarantee the safety of hydrogen vehicles in principle.
So far, authorities have resorted to technical regulations and standards from industry, automotive industries in the registration process for vehicles with hydrogen fuel cells for the purpose of conformity assessment. Now, specific technical regulations and standards for the approval of hydrogen-powered rail vehicles are to be drawn up in order to facilitate the use of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies; simplify the approval process; and thus promote and sustainably strengthen the use of alternative drives in rail transport.
The project is divided into two work packages:
The first step is to review all relevant national and international regulations and standards applicable to hydrogen vehicles and fuel cell systems. The analysis is carried out by their application to the rail vehicle sector and their evaluation.
The second step is to develop a draft for a railway-specific standard to facilitate the implementation of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies in order to strengthen the use of alternative drives in rail transport.
The scope of services of TÜV Rheinland InterTraffic includes:
The preparation of an overview of all national and international regulations and standards in the field of hydrogen and fuel cells;
The definition of boundary conditions for the area of rail vehicles;
The development of the design of a railway-specific standard for hydrogen fuel cell systems for rail vehicles; and
The project management and documentation of the work results as well as the coordination of the research-accompanying working group.
The project will be implemented in an interdisciplinary manner by TÜV Rheinland. The project team also includes experts from the hydrogen competence team of the globally active testing service provider. They support the research and review of the relevant national and international regulations as well as standards and their application to the rail vehicle sector. The duration of the project is 12 months.