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Geneva’s Electric Buses Will “Flash-Charge” in Just 15 Seconds


FLASHGeneva’s new electric bus network will outpace Tesla’s Supercharger by five times as much energy. In a contract with Switzerland-based ABB, Transports Publics Genevois (TPG) will add “flash-charging” buses along a route from Geneva’s airport to Praille-Acacias Vernet.

The 12 TOSA (Trolleybus Optimisation Système Alimentation) buses and 13 “flash-charging” stations will service over 10,000 passengers daily. The plan works by allowing a bus to recharge at a station for 15 seconds, during which a 600 kilowatt blast will supply needed energy. The buses would run every 10 minutes and could recharge for longer (five minutes duration) at the end of the line.

It’s interesting to note that at each recharging station along the way, the blast of energy will only be enough to get the bus from that station to the next. Could the buses run into some problems if the blasts of energy became slightly less over time? Would the buses always be able to reach the next station in due time?

ABB, which engineered the charging features, will apparently also supply the buses with roof battery units that will store energy. The bus line is expected to lower carbon dioxide emissions by 1,000 tons per year compared to diesel buses.

The President of ABB’s Power Grids division, Claudio Facchin, speaks of the plan, “We are proud of this breakthrough technology to support Geneva’s vision of providing a silent and zero-emission urban mass transportation for the city. It provides a model for future urban transport and reinforces our vision of sustainable mobility for a better world.”

The bus network is set to be in use quite soon: 2018. A pilot was already conducted successfully from the Geneva airport to the Palexpo exhibition center. Deemed “Line 23”, the new transportation system might just inspire Tesla to get on Geneva’s level.

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