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TNO is working with industry partners on enabling fully electric bus transport in the Netherlands and beyond. Within the National Green Deal the Government, local authorities, and industry are committed to collaborate towards a situation in 2025 in which all buses are zero emission.
Impression of the electric bus equipped with sensors
An electric bus is very energy efficient for city public transport, but challenges can still remain because of limited range and higher costs. Another specific challenge is that an electric bus has very little waste heat available to heat the cabin and keep passengers comfortable, as opposed to a diesel bus. Additionally in the summer months, the air conditioning can be a significant energy demand, hence limiting the range of the bus.
The E3Bus project objectives are to increase driving range and energy efficiency while optimizing the comfort of the passengers, through technological innovations. Almost every aspect of the bus is targeted in achieving these goals. Several measures are applied to the bus cabin to maintain internal conditions inside the bus (for example by thermal insulation). Additionally an innovative heat pump system has been developed to maintain the climate of the bus cabin with less energy than conventional systems. Setting the right temperatures in the bus, dependent on the amount of passengers, actual weather conditions, and the seasons are measures that save energy whilst maintaining and improving passenger comfort.
The proto-type heatpump in TNO's test facilities
Within the E3Bus project, TNO worked together with industrial partners VDL Bus & Coach and HVAC system supplier HEAVAC to develop simulation models and hardware prototypes to assess the effectiveness of the investigated measures. Fontys and QBuzz supported the E3Bus project with the collection of field data.
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