EMT Madrid expands electric bus depot

In Spain, EMT Madrid has significantly expanded the charging infrastructure for its electric buses at the depot in the Carabanchel district. With the third expansion phase now complete, 118 new charging points have been created - and further expansion in the fourth phase is already planned.

Image: EMT Madrid

EMT Madrid says the third expansion phase that has now been completed has created 118 new charging points, with further expansion in the fourth phase already planned. The 118 new charge points will enable 260 battery-electric buses to be charged simultaneously at the Carabanchel depot.

The charging points are top-down pantographs, lowered from the roof of a fixed tent onto the pantographs on the roofs of the electric buses parked below. Drivers do not have to plug in a cable after parking the vehicles.

The pantographs themselves are connected in groups of three, each with 360 kW of charging power. If only one bus is charging, it can be fully charged with the full 360 kW in around one hour, according to EMT Madrid. If the system is fully occupied, the power is divided into 3x 120 kW. But even then, the three electric buses would be fully charged in three hours and would, therefore, be at 100 per cent in time for the start of the next shift when charging overnight.

The charging infrastructure for the third expansion phase was installed on a 221 x 25 meter parking space. In addition to the pantograph charging systems themselves, safety features such as a fire protection system, sensors for detecting escaping gases and thermal imaging cameras were also installed in order to detect possible malfunctions and risks in good time when charging so many vehicles. PV modules have also been installed on the roof of the facility, with self-generated solar power expected to cover around ten per cent of demand.

The expansion is not yet complete with 260 charging points, as the city of Madrid wants to further decarbonize public transport. Once work on the fourth phase has been completed, a total of 320 charging points will be available in Carabanchel.

By the end of 2024, EMT Madrid’s fleet is expected to comprise over 440 electric buses. EMT Madrid wants to operate a completely emission-free bus fleet from 2033. On the way there, the last conventionally powered vehicle was taken out of service in December 2022. The electric buses are vehicles from manufacturers such as Solaris and Irizar, but EMT Madrid has also ordered fuel cell buses from CaetanoBus.

intelligenttransport.com, emtmadrid.es (in Spanish)


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