NZ GO BUS SELECTS SIEMENS FOR E-BUS CHARGING: EARLY 2021

By: Fabian Cotter, Photography by: courtesy Go Bus + Siemens


GLOBAL TECH giant Siemens has won the rights to provide e-bus charging infrastructure to New Zealand operator Go Bus, the company has announced.

NZ GO BUS SELECTS SIEMENS FOR E-BUS CHARGING: EARLY 2021
“We’re proud to see our technology play a pivotal part in fulfilling New Zealand’s low-carbon future," said Jeff Connolly, CEO Siemens Australia Pacific and head of Siemens’ Smart Infrastructure portfolio in the region.

Go Bus - as one of NZ’s largest bus operators - chose Siemens to power 34 buses at Go Bus depots in Christchurch and Auckland - using plug-in CCS2 charging technology - it confirms.

The charging infrastructure will support 25 electric buses in Christchurch - the city’s first large-scale electric bus fleet - and nine buses in Auckland, which will operate on a new electric airport link, Siemens explains. The operations are scheduled to start in early 2021, it states.

The ‘Sicharge UC eBus’ charging infrastructure will help New Zealand’s sustainability goals as the country looks to electrification of the transport sector to reduce carbon footprint, Siemens says. The city of Auckland, for example, aims to have a full zero-emission bus fleet by 2040.

In addition to this recent win, Siemens has a history of helping modernise New Zealand’s infrastructure and making it more sustainable, having worked with KiwiRail on the electrification and re–signalling of Auckland’s urban rail network, it adds.

"As a national bus operator, Go Bus needs to be agile and adapt to many fast-moving changes when transitioning to electric bus transport," said Calum Haslop, CEO of Go Bus.

"It’s also important that any investments we make now take into account rapid advances in battery technology and digitalisation.

"Siemens’ independent charging infrastructure and management software provides us with the most future-proof solutions and flexibility," Haslop explained.

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RAPID ADVANCES

According to the company, the Siemens Sicharge UC range grants bus operators optimal flexibility when planning electric bus depots by providing highly efficient infrastructure designed to be future proofed against rapid advances in battery technology. It also is said to enable bus operators to economically expand charging infrastructure with up to five dispensers plus a pantograph per charging centre.

Jeff Connolly, CEO of Siemens Australia Pacific and head of Siemens’ Smart Infrastructure portfolio in the region said: "We’re proud to see our technology play a pivotal part in fulfilling New Zealand’s low-carbon future.

"It’s critical to have a long-term view of transport infrastructure – one that centres around the effective and efficient use of the right technology and seamless movement of people," said Connolly.

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UNIVERSAL FIT

The Go Bus project demonstrates the advantage of Siemens’ vehicle-agnostic charging infrastructure, which will integrate with eBuses from both Chinese OEM Yutong and local New Zealand OEM Global Bus Ventures, to deliver future-proofed charging solutions, says Siemens.

The reporting and monitoring function of Siemens’ Charging Management Software will enable Go Bus to centrally monitor all charging infrastructure across two cities and easily report on key metrics including electricity savings, it confirms.

Smart management functionality will also enable Go Bus to schedule charging to take advantage to lower overnight tariffs while ensuring that individual buses have reached the desired state of charge by the time they are needed for the next day’s operations, it explains.

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TECHNICALLY SPEAKING

The charging system in the Christchurch depot will include 12 ‘SiCharge UC 200 Charging Centers’ with dispensers powering 25 parking spaces with up to 200kW, Siemens explains. In Auckland, there will be five of these systems as well as two SiCharge UC 100 stations with a charging power of up to 125kW, supplying a total of nine eBuses. Both solutions provide plug-in CCS2 depot charging overnight or for top-up charging between scheduled bus services during the day, it says.

The Sicharge UC family supports battery voltages from 10V up to 1,000V, Siemens says. Current eBuses available in the New Zealand market average between 600V to 700V, but future bus batteries are expected to use higher voltages to enable faster charging, it explains.

Additionally, the charging system uses open communication standards as Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) to interact with different backend software; for example, for charging management, it states.

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ABOUT SIEMENS

Siemens AG (Berlin and Munich) is a global technology powerhouse that has stood for engineering excellence, innovation, quality, reliability and internationality for more than 170 years, it states.

The company is active around the globe, focusing on the areas of power generation and distribution, intelligent infrastructure for buildings and distributed energy systems, and automation and digitalisation in the process and manufacturing industries, it adds.

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