Raul Toomsalu on Operail’s plans to construct a hydrogen locomotive

Added on 30.10.2020

Raul Toomsalu, Chairman of Management Board of Operail, participated in the hydrogen day “Is Estonia Missing the Hydrogen Train?”, organised by the Foresight Centre and the Riigikogu, with a presentation titled “Hydrogen Locomotive. From the Perspective of the Carrier”.

Toomsalu spoke about what the rail freight operator sees in the fuels of the future, what role hydrogen locomotives could play in freight transport, and about the company’s plans for the construction of the hydrogen locomotive. “A hydrogen locomotive is not impossible in Estonia! The question is how much hydrogen can be stored in the locomotive. Hydrogen locomotives could be very suitable for manoeuvring work as well as for transport of up to 200 km. Electric and diesel locomotives are suitable for servicing heavy trains on a longer route,” said Toomsalu.

He highlighted Operail’s valuable experience in building locomotives. “New locomotives are built in Estonia once again after 80 years in our Tapa depot. We have experience and knowledge, which have also served as a basis for future plans. We have an understanding of how to build a hydrogen locomotive based on the same locomotive that we are building in Tapa today,” he confirmed. Toomsalu admitted that there are, of course, still many unanswered questions, but work is under way to find the answers.

Toomsalu ended his presentation stating that Operail would be happy to cooperate with Estonian scientists and other partners.

Click here to watch Raul Toomsalu’s presentation.