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The earliest trains dating back to Ancient Greece were rope-hauled, gravity powered and pulled by horse. Steam trains, on the other hand, were introduced in early 1800s and dominated until the early 19th century.

As technology advanced, modern trains emerged providing passengers faster and more comfortable travels. Its thriving industry also paved the way for other industries such as tourism, trade and investment.

And now Germany is set to kickoff its biggest technological breakthrough in rail travel by the end of 2017.

Alstom recently unveiled what might be the world’s first hydrogen-powered passenger train.

hydrogen-train-1

Source: Alstom

Coradia iLint is a CO2-emission-free passenger train that can speed up to 87 miles per hour and a hydrogen capacity for a 497-mile journey. Aptly called a silent train, it operates with a low level of noise and only emits steam and condensed water.

“Alstom is proud to launch a breakthrough innovation in the field of clean transportation,” Alstom chairman and CEO Henri Poupart-Lafarge said.

iLint is Germany’s alternative to the growing number of heavily polluting diesel-powered trains–4000 of which operates in the country alone.

It was announced at InnoTrans, the biggest annual trade show in Berlin earlier this year.

hydrogen-train-2

Source: Alstom

According to the French transit company, the passenger train will begin its service by the end of 2017. It will run on the Buxtehude-Bremervörde-Bremerhaven-Cuxhaven line in Lower Saxony as reported by German newspaper, Die Welt.

“It shows our ability to work in close collaboration with our customers and develop a train in only two years.”

Countries like Netherlands, Denmark and Norway are showing interest about iLint too. Meanwhile, testing and approval by the German Federal Railway Authority Eisenbahn-Bundesamt are expected to be completed by the end of 2017.

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