The German supplier Kiepe Electric is supplying key components for new Solaris electric buses for use in the Italian cities of Milan and Modena. Milan’s public transport operator ATM has ordered 30 Solaris buses with electrical equipment from Düsseldorf.
The new vehicles will replace the bus fleet that has been in operation since the 1980s. In addition to the 30 buses currently ordered, there is an option to expand the contract for a further 50 vehicles. Kiepe Electric is supplying the complete electric drive systems for the fleet changeover in Milan. The first buses have already been delivered. By 2030 Milan wants to convert its bus fleet completely to electric drives.
The core of this drive system is the “In-Motion Charging Technology” (IMC): During the journey, the system can draw energy from the overhead line with up to 500 kW charging power. In addition to direct consumption, the power can also be stored in the 45 kWh lithium titanate oxide traction batteries. “On sections of track without overhead lines, the vehicle can then be operated like a battery bus,” says Heiko Asum, Managing Director of Kiepe Electric. The range of the Milan buses is up to 24 kilometers. Long loading times at the terminal stops are thus to be eliminated.
In Modena, where eight further Solaris buses will be delivered, another advantage of the system is evident: all three trolleybus lines running there pass the Romanesque cathedral of San Geminiano, the city’s cathedral. In future, the buses will be able to drive past here with battery power – and the local public transport company SETA will be able to dismantle a large part of the overhead line at the cathedral and in the historic centre of the university town.