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Nicholas Newman


TGV high speed french train in gare de Lyon station

Today it is a rare sight to see a train steaming away from a station; usually you have to visit a tourist railway to see a historic steam train. However, less than 50 years ago, it was commonplace in Europe to see steam trains. Certainly many famous films are based on trains, especially steam trains. For instance, Murder on the Orient Express, the star of the film is the steam train. Nowadays, trains are powered by diesel or electricity.

The electric powered ones are just as likely to obtain their power from a dam on the Rhine, a French nuclear power station, a Dutch wind farm or even an Italian solar farm. In addition, the trains are getting into the act of powering themselves. In London, there is a station covered in solar panels that helps power the trains that use it.

Elsewhere, trains are using the power to brake to be stored in a battery for use to help the train move off again. Elsewhere, engineers are looking at powering trains using LNG, hydrogen or even on board nuclear power. However, one thing is certain, the train you see running past your office will have an interesting story to tell about how it is powered and the energy sourced.


About the author: admin


Oxford based journalist and consultant, who writes about business, especially the global energy business including exploration. Also editor Oxfordprospect.co.uk. Writes about a variety of topics including production, power generation including renewables, innovation, investment, markets, technology, regulation, leadership, policy making and management.


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