Integrating electric heavy-duty vehicles: The ASSURED project

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As stated clearly during COP23 in Bonn, we urgently need to take actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Among all means of transportation, heavy-duty vehicles, like lorries, buses and coaches, play a significant role in the emission of CO2 in urban areas.

To tackle this problem, electric mobility (especially when charged with clean energy sources) is one of the best available solutions. UITP supports the electrification of public transport and the successes of ZeEUS, the Zero Emission Urban Bus System project, led by UITP since November 2013, proves our commitment to protecting our planet and its people from harmful substances.

As a natural follow-up to ZeEUS, the EU-cofunded project ASSURED, led by the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, will address the electrification of urban commercial vehicles and how they can be charged within minutes, evaluating several infrastructures in different cities across Europe.

The project started in October 2017 with the aim of developing and testing high-power solutions – able to provide high amounts of electricity - for full-size, urban, heavy-duty applications. The fundamental goal is that each of these solutions will be able to charge various types of vehicles, and are designed to supply energy for a whole fleet of buses or trucks.

Using innovative charging management strategies will contribute to reducing noise and air pollution, as well as the total cost of ownership and operational costs. Another element which will be improved is the grid stability to ensure a secure energy supply, essential for future uses when a larger number of vehicles will rely on the charging infrastructure. To achieve this, ASSURED will test six public transport buses, two garbage trucks, one delivery truck, and one light commercial delivery vehicle with automatic fast charging, which means that there is no human interaction during the charging process. The charging solutions tested by ASSURED will include different types of pantographs, plug-in and wireless charging. 

The goal is to charge different vehicles using the same infrastructure, which is what makes ASSURED so innovative: this will be the first time a project sets out to test the interoperability of the charging solutions applied. If successful, this will help reduce costs and support the standardisation of the elements of the infrastructure.

The ASSURED consortium gathers 39 partners from 12 European countries covering the entire value chain of urban heavy-duty transport and light-duty vehicles. It includes public transport authorities and operators, bus manufacturers, truck manufacturers, light-duty manufacturers, charging solution suppliers, energy providers, national and international associations, cities, consultancies and research centres. UITP is leader of the User Acceptance & Demonstration in cities activities, as well as for dissemination, collaboration and networking.

For more information on ASSURED, contact Aida Abdulah.

Read the press release on the ZeEUS eBus Report #2, released in October 2017 at the UITP-Busworld International Bus Conference.