Task 33, Battery Electric Buses

Battery Electric Buses

Ongoing Tasks


Completed Tasks

Contact for further information

Operating Agent

Mr. Gerfried Jungmeier
Joanneum Research
LIFE - Centre for Climate, Energy and Society
Elisabethstrasse 18
8010 Graz
Tel: + 43 316 876 1313

Battery Electric Buses Report

Programme of Work

In recent years Battery Electric Bus Systems maintained increasing attention. Several city councils and urban bus operators aim to electrify bus fleets partially or completely in the near future (e.g. Hamburg, Dresden). Recent developments show that new charging strategies and advanced energy storage technologies enable a full-day operation of electric buses, e.g. using the opportunity of fast charging concepts. Significant cost reductions are expected due to technology standardization and economies of scale. More than 20 bus producing companies in Europe already offer various types of electric buses. Main bus companies intend to start electric buses in series soon. So electric bus systems have the potential to substitute diesel buses in the (near) future.

Numerous innovative projects have been initiated in recent years, especially in central Europe, e.g. from pilot projects towards commercial use (e.g. Cologne, Maastricht). The evaluation and analysis of key aspects of 60 electric bus projects worldwide (e.g. Charging Strategies, Electric Energy Storage Systems) is continuing.

The rapid development to prepare the massive rolling out of electric buses is underlined by the following press-releases of the industry:

  • "Volvo and the European bus manufacturers Irizar, Solaris and VDL have agreed to ensure the interoperability of electric buses with charging Infrastructure provided by ABB, Heliox and Siemens. The objective is to ensure an open interface between electric buses and charging infrastructure and to facilitate the introduction of electric bus systems in European cities" (15.03.2016)
  • "The public transport community is preparing for electric buses in Europe and standardization activities have started via the European body (CEN-CENELEC) and via the international organization for standardization (ISO/IEC). European standards are expected to come in place 2019 and international standards in 2020" (23.03.2016)

Task 33 will focus on the following topics:

  • Analyses of the current state of technology & demonstration experiences of battery electric buses
  • Stakeholder workshops for the exchange of information
  • Analyses of future perspectives of battery electric buses and necessary framework conditions and technology development
  • Documentation and dissemination.

Working Method

The basic approach is to initiate a cooperation of three focus groups

  1. Provider of public transportation services
  2. System&technology provider: Siemens, Solaris, Bombardier, MAN, Mercedes,...
  3. Research institutions to analyze, discuss and document the future perspectives for battery electric buses (Figure 1). One main element of this cooperation and interaction will be expert workshops in combination with site visits to focus on the "State of technology for battery electric buses" and the "Future perspectives of battery electric buses"


Figure 1: Working method in Task 33


IMG_1273  IMG_1173

courtesy of "Graz Holding Linien"


The Task 33 was officially started in April 2016 and will run until the end of 2018.

Member Countries

Currently, Austria, Canada and Spain are members of the Task.

For more information, please contact the Operating Agent.

New members are encouraged to apply.

Financing and Sponsorship

There is an annual contribution fee for membership covered by the national IEA HEV participation fees. Any HEV TCP member may join. In addition, as in any IEA Task, attendees at the meetings are kindly asked to cover their own costs linked to participation. In addition to attending meetings, participating members are expected to set aside an appropriate amount of time and resources to support the task activities. Please contact the Task 33 Operating Agent for more information.

Benefits of Participation

Members in this Task will analyze and conclude on future perspectives for battery electric buses creating benefits by the following benefits and deliverables:

  1. Identify and analyze the state of technology and systems of battery electric buses
  2. Collect and document "International Success Stories" in common format
  3. Give an overview of systems and technology providers with characteristic data
  4. Analyze combination of trolley and battery systems
  5. Integration and use of existing infrastructure of trams, trolleys, and metro
  6. Identify success factors, e.g. size of bus, distances between bus stops
  7. Define loading strategies
  8. Analyze sustainability issues - economic, environmental & social aspects
  9. Identify R&D demand
  10. Conclude and summarize future perspectives
  11. Publish IEA HEV glossy Brochure of results
  12. Presentations and contributions at conferences, seminars and workshops