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Hitachi ABB Power, Ashok Leyland, IIT-M join hands for electric bus pilot project

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on November 27, 2020 Published on November 27, 2020

Hitachi ABB Power Grids in India (listed as ABB Power Products and Systems India Ltd), Ashok Leyland and the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IIT-M) have signed an agreement for an electric bus pilot project.

The triumvirate will run an electric bus (e-bus) pilot at the IIT-M campus. The e-bus will be provided by Ashok Leyland and Hitachi ABB Power Grids’ flash-charging technology – Grid-eMotionTM Flash, which has been localised for the Indian market. IIT-M will host the infrastructure required to operate the flash-charging system for the e-bus, according to a statement.

Also read: IIT-Madras develops solar-powered unmanned survey craft for Indian ports

“We need to have all hands-on deck – industry, academia and policymakers to develop a reliable local ecosystem to support the Indian electric vehicle revolution,” said N Venu, Managing Director, Hitachi ABB Power Grids in India.

The government is striving to scale up EV adoption to 30 per cent by 2030, the mass public transport segment is largely untouched.

Key challenges

For bus operators, the switch to electric has posed challenges. That is because with battery-operated buses it is difficult to maximise passenger load carrying capacity and running time while making the whole operation economically viable.

N Saravanan, Chief Technology Officer, Ashok Leyland, said the combination of AL’s buses with electric propulsion technology and flash charging from Hitachi ABB Power Grids, could provide a solution to the need for sustainable public transportation across the country.

“We hope to study and understand how the right technology can enable an efficient transport system without damaging the environment. We are delighted to have partnered with the best in the industry for this endeavour,” said Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT-Madras.

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Published on November 27, 2020
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