Spanish LNG terminal operator Reganosa has dispatched a truckload of LNG from its Mugardos terminal in the port of Ferrol to supply the first European passenger train that will use LNG as fuel (operated by Renfe). The first load was delivered on January 5 through a tanker truck to Asturias, where the train will be tested for four months. This pilot is part of a European Union’s package of projects to promote the use of cleaner energy in both road and marine transport.
The pilot test involves running an LNG-fueled engine on a locomotive from the Feve diesel train depot. For this purpose, the diesel engine on one of the two paired locomotive units has been replaced with one powered by natural gas, and tanks for storing LNG have been fitted, alongside other necessary auxiliary equipment. This will allow comparing the results of one and another technology. LNG will reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides, carbon monoxide, particulates, as well as the noise pollution. In addition, a significant reduction in costs will be achieved, given the lower price of LNG.
For the completion of the tests Renfe has reserved a section of 20 kilometers between Figaredo and Trubia stations, in Asturias. From its LNG terminal, Reganosa will deliver cargoes via trucks on a weekly basis to fuel the locomotive in Figaredo.
According to Renfe, they choose Spain to carry out this experience since the country “has a long experience in LNG management.” Moreover, the logistics capacity has also been assessed. One and the other factor “can guarantee security of supply for this potential market.”