VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland is initiating test runs with an
electric prototype bus in Espoo in spring 2013. The objective is to test the
performance and properties of products from Finnish component manufacturers.
The test runs are operated without passengers.
The electric bus used is a test vehicle for testing the performance of
components from various manufacturers in laboratory conditions and in
demanding Finnish climate conditions. The results will enable comparison of
component properties with other products on the market.
The project will help Finland’s electric vehicle industry to design
competitive components or subsystems for the international market.
The test bus was built in the eBus project coordinated by VTT and involving
research scientists and actors interested in marketing electric vehicles or
their components. The vehicle has a remarkably high degree of domestic origin.
The Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences is responsible for
system integration and assembly, while Aalto University is responsible for the
simulation supporting the design work. The component suppliers include
European Batteries (battery system) and Vacon (frequency converters). The test
bus was built using a bus body manufactured by Kabus Oy.
Worldwide development of electric vehicles has already come a long way. VTT is
now focusing its efforts on the area most suitable for Finland: the
development of heavy-duty electric vehicles and machinery. VTT has a vehicle
laboratory in Espoo for studying electric vehicles and their powertrains as
comprehensive systems. The laboratory is equipped for measuring the properties
of electric motors, electronic systems and batteries.
VTT has launched the TransSmart spearhead programme (Smart Mobility Integrated
with Low-carbon Energy) as its response to the energy and climate challenges
of the future. These challenges require the development of vehicles and forms
of goods and passenger transport that are more energy-efficient, as well as
the introduction of lower-carbon energy sources. Research projects under the
TransSmart spearhead programme are seeking multi-discipline solutions by
combining expertise in areas such as vehicles, traffic and energy systems,
transport services, fuels and community planning.