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Public transport company VHH orders 16 Mercedes-Benz eCitaro electric buses; longer-range packs

The public transport company Verkehrsbetriebe Hamburg-Holstein (VHH) in Germany has ordered 16 units of the Mercedes-Benz eCitaro electric city bus. The buses are expected to be delivered at the end of 2019.

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For the first time the buses features twelve battery packs with total capacity of 292 kWh. This results in a long range, even in difficult conditions at the height of summer and in winter, amounting to around 170 kilometers (106 miles) in accordance with SORT2, without recharging along the route. In ideal conditions, the range can even be as much as about 280 kilometers (174 miles).

Glazed side-wall segments around the standing area between the axles give the passenger compartment of the eCitaro an even airier and more transparent appearance and lend the city buses an individual look in terms of character. A large special-use area opposite door two creates lots of space for transporting wheelchairs, prams and for standing passengers. Last but not least, three double-width doors ensure a rapid passenger flow at bus stops. USB charging ports for smartphones, a new seat upholstery design developed for the electric buses, and the wood-look floor covering all enhance the passenger compartment.

The company Verkehrsbetriebe Hamburg-Holstein (VHH) uses more than 150 buses to connect the metropolis of Hamburg with the surrounding area. The area served by VHH includes the city of Hamburg itself and the surrounding districts. The company’s fleet comprises more than 500 buses, by far the majority of which are from Mercedes-Benz. They carry more than 100 million passengers per year.

As of 2020, VHH wants to buy exclusively locally emission-free buses for use in the Hamburg city area. In order to prepare for electromobility the Bergedorf depot has become the first of VHH’s twelve depots to be converted for electromobility with a newly built workshop hall and the necessary charging infrastructure.

The 16 eCitaro vehicles are charged at the depot’s charging point using a charging management system. This technology ensures precise charging of every single bus to suit its specific application, without any unnecessary and expensive current spikes. In this context, the interior of the buses is also thermally preconditioned. This cuts the energy consumption for climate control during use and thus extends the range.

Comments

mahonj

They should use a diesel (or kerosene) heater for winter when a lot of heat is required.
This is a reasonable idea as diesel is about 95% efficient for heat generation (while electric is about 95% efficient for motive power).
It is more efficient to use diesel to directly generate heat than to use coal to generate electricity, store it in a battery (via the grid) and then use it as heating in a bus.
This would not work in summer (!) when cooling is required.
I wonder could they use a phase change "heat battery" ? - might not have the capacity for a day's use.
Once you get to the scale of a bus, things get interesting.

yoatmon

@ mahonj:
I don't share your opinion at this point. I'm convinced that a heat pump does that job very fine. Use a heat pump in the winter for heating and reverse the function during summertime to cool.
There are astonishing "heat pump" innovations in the pipeline due to penetrate the market in short time with double the efficiency of current heat pumps. Why keep on messing with fossils?

mahonj

@Yoatmon: "Why keep on messing with fossils?"
The energy density and ease of handling.
If your future heat pump innovations are right, then you wouldn't need a diesel heater - for sure, but in the mean time, it should be an option. (Do you have any links to them ?)

I suppose the question is - what is the best way to store energy for heating and cooling - as opposed to motive power.

yoatmon

@ mahonj:
https://ecourbanhub.com/artificial-muscles-power-saarland-air-conditioners/
"The efficiency of the novel technology is unquestionable. It can produce as much as thirty times more cooling or heating power than the mechanical energy it takes to load the wires."

yoatmon

And here is a further innovation for industrial application.
ECOP rotational heat pump:
https://www.google.de/search?source=hp&ei=aByrXJ7SBrSEwPAPo8aBuAo&q=ecop+rotation+heat+pump&oq=ecop+heat+pump+&gs_l=psy-ab.1.1.0i22i30l2.1882.9318..16344...0.0..0.82.900.15......0....1..gws-wiz.....0..0i131j0j0i10j0i19j0i22i30i19j0i22i10i30i19j0i22i10i30.rBvhuf7WWpE

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