Strategy E – Project for planning of electric buses launched
RWTH Aachen University is involved in a new joint project in the field of electric buses. In the project Strategy E (October 2018 - September 2021) a planning software for electric buses is developed. As one of nine projects, the project has successfully applied for funding in the context of the 2nd call of the lead market competition MobilityLogistics.NRW. With the help of the planning software to be developed in the project, transport companies in North Rhine-Westphalia will be able to plan the conversion to electric buses independently and systematically.
The conversion to electric buses presents transport companies with new challenges. Due to their limited range and the charging time required, electric buses cannot be used as flexibly as conventional diesel vehicles. A cost-efficient and reliable overall system can only be achieved if the operational planning, the vehicle concept and the infrastructure are harmonized. The combination of operational and technical factors makes the planning process extremely complex. It is therefore difficult to plan the entire system without suitable technical tools.
In Strategy E such a tool will be developed and tested. This extends the competencies of the transport companies using it to compare different electric bus concepts with each other in a technology-open way. The operational effects of the different electric bus concepts for the respective transport company are made transparent and quantified. This is the only way to identify a cost-efficient and reliable overall system adapted to local conditions.
In the project, existing planning processes of the transport companies will be analysed and integrated. The pilot users Kölner Verkehrs-Betriebe (KVB), Stadtwerke Oberhausen (STOAG) and WestVerkehr (west) ensure that the application of the software meets the needs of the users. All three transport companies are planning to procure electric buses or are already operating electric buses on regular routes.
In addition to the transport companies as pilot users, the project consortium consists of the planning offices ebusplan GmbH and Rupprecht Consult - Forschung und Beratung GmbH. The Institute for Power Electronics and Electrical Drives (ISEA) of RWTH Aachen University is an associated partner of the project consortium. ebusplan is one of the leading teams of electric bus experts and advises transport companies, cities and public authorities throughout Europe and the USA on the cost-optimized electrification of their fleets. In addition to the technical aspects, the consulting service focuses on the efficient operational integration of electric vehicles, taking into account local conditions and processes. Rupprecht Consult - Forschung und Beratung GmBH has successfully accompanied cities and municipalities since 1996 in the development of integrative and environmentally friendly mobility concepts and has developed numerous implementation strategies for European transport companies in the introduction of electric buses within the framework of large EU research projects (e.g. ELIPTIC - Electrification of public transport in cities, 2015-2018, in which the ISEA of RWTH Aachen University was also involved).
A further focus of the project is to combine the existing competences and procedures in the planning of electric buses with best practice experiences from EU projects and finally to share knowledge and experience with transport companies from NRW. To this end, Strategy E will set up a user forum and organise workshops on planning topics. The first workshop will take place in May 2019. Transport companies in NRW are invited to register for the user forum by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org in order to be informed about current developments and to benefit from the project results in the future.
Further information on the Strategy E project will soon be available at http://strategie-e.de/
This project is funded by the European Union and the State of North Rhine-Westphalia.