Bern to power e-buses with Siemens charging infrastructure

The capital city of Switzerland, Bern, is set to power its electric buses using electric vehicle charging infrastructure to be supplied and installed by technology company Siemens. This follows the signing of a contract between the technology company and Bern public transport operator Bernmobil as part of the company’s transport electrification programme.

Bernmobil will be launching 14 new electric buses from 2023. Markus Anderegg, deputy director and head of technology at Bernmobil said the aim is to run a “climate-neutral bus network with 100 percent electrically powered vehicles by around 2035.”

Anderegg, added: “A reliable and efficient charging infrastructure is an important prerequisite for us to achieve our goal.”

Some fast EV charging units will be installed at three terminal stations as well as charging infrastructure at Bernmobil’s Eigerplatz bus depot. To optimize operations, a cloud-based depot management solution from Siemens will be used as software-as-a-service.

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Siemens will provide its UC 600 fast-charging units for the bus operator’s terminal stations in Elfenau, Blinzern and Bremgarten. Using the 450KW fast chargers, the buses will charge during their scheduled stops. The connection of the charging unit to the vehicle is fully automatic so nothing needs to be connected manually.

At the Eigerplatz bus depot, Siemens will install seven Sicharge UC 200 fast-charging units, each with three dispensers. This means that a total of 21 bus parking spaces will be equipped with electric charging infrastructure.

Reducing emissions from the transport sector will help Switzerland to move closer to carbon emissions reductions targets set by the European Commission. Today, Switzerland’s transport industry accounts for 41% of all carbon emissions. While total Swiss CO2 emissions decreased by 10% between 1990 and 2016, CO2 emissions from transport increased by 4.5% over the same period, according to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.