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Leading Chinese Bus Manufacturer Selects Maxwell Ultracaps for Hybrid Transit Buses

Golden Dragon Bus Co. Ltd., one of the world’s leading producers of medium- and heavy-duty buses, has selected Maxwell’s BOOSTCAP ultracapacitors for braking energy recuperation and torque assist in fuel-efficient, low-emission, diesel-electric hybrid buses Golden Dragon is producing for the Hangzhou, China, Public Transport Group Co., Ltd.

Golden Dragon delivered the first prototype hybrid bus with an ultracapacitor-based energy storage system to Hangzhou in July 2007, for comparison with other hybrid drive systems under actual operating conditions.

Maxwell has completed delivery of 720 48-volt BMOD0165 P048 multi-cell ultracapacitor modules to Golden Dragon for installation into 45 hybrid buses ordered by the Hangzhou Public Transport Group Co., Ltd.

BMOD0165 P048 modules are encased in a rugged, splash-proof, aluminum chassis. They weigh 14.2 kg and are 12.6 liters in volume (416.2mm x 190.1mm x 156.7mm). These durable smart boxes include temperature and voltage monitoring and internal cell voltage management that give designers “plug and play” solutions and makes them versatile building blocks for systems with higher voltage requirements.

Golden Dragon Bus Co., Ltd. is a joint venture company established in 1992 to develop, manufacture and market large-and-medium-sized luxury buses and light vans under the Golden Dragon brand. Its line of products includes vans and buses ranging from five to 18 meters in length and seating from five to 65 passengers.


Henry Gibson

To put in electric drive and not put in a substantial battery is a waste of the electronic drive and an imposition on the owners and the riders of the bus and on the CO2 burden of the air when the bus could be plug in hybrid. Safe automatic charging contacts could be at every stop. ..HG..


I disagree, I think this is a great step. The capture ability of capacitors for regenerative braking is much better than batteries. Even if the bus could be made fully electric, it still make sense to utilize ultracaps to store the regen braking energy, as they will capture and release more of it. By acting as a first stage buffer for the battery can smooth load on the batteries, and extend their lifetimes radically. Using it as cheap hybrid tech, (in this application) makes economic sense, and I'm thrilled to see it starting. Ultracaps have less negative environmental impacts on disposal than batteries too. (not to mention radically longer lifetimes). Getting the production and usage of such devices up, is a huge boon to their costs. Their broader adoption spells efficiency gains across the board.


They probably did modeling and found out that a PHEV would be too expensive with current battery prices. The selected combination was selected as optimal for their application.
You may be willing to pay $US 30K for a HEV, but may not be willing to pay $US 50+K for a PHEV with 40 mile EV range.
They need to sell enough vehicles to be profitable.

Henry Gibson

The Prius demonstrates that batteries can produce power.

The reported highest power of ultra-capacitors is available only for fractions of a second and complex electronic circuitry is used in the modules to maintain a useful voltage and protect the individual cells from destructive over voltatges. The ultra capacitors can only store the energy of a single stop and energy from even short down hill grades is wasted, nor can the ultracap store enough energy for a brief incline so the basic engine must be larger and less efficient.

CISIRO Australia has combined ultracaps inside a lead acid battery to good effect.

EFFPOWER's bipolar hybrid lead-acid battery demonstrates that very high power can come from a battery.

Compared to the total cost of the buses, a sufficient number of standard ZEBRA batteries for the power would not be too expensive and would save much fuel.

Considering the complexity of the electronics of Ultracaps, an array of two small high-power flywheels would be less complex, more reliable and cheaper to build.

If you are not building an electric-plug-in-hybrid, the use of electricity might even be questionable if hydraulic hybrid systems similar to the one in the UPS truck could be used. Tanks for compressed gas and hydraulic fluid are cheap. "Penny wise and Pound foolish" is the old saying. ..HG..

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