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Volvo: The Volvo Group studies potential to test electric roads in a city

The Volvo Group is now taking the next step in the development of
sustainable transport solutions. In collaboration with the Swedish
Transport Administration, the Volvo Group will study the potential
for building electric roads, where city buses can be charged from
electricity in the road at the same time as the bus is in operation.
The benefit is quieter and more climate-smart public transport. A
300- to 500-meter electric road may be built for test operations in
central Gothenburg during 2015.

"Vehicles capable of being charged directly from the road during
operation could become the next pioneering step in the development
towards reduced environmental impact, and this is fully in line with
our vision of becoming the world leader in sustainable transport
solutions. Close cooperation between society and industry is needed
for such a development to be possible and we look forward to
investigating the possibilities together with the City of
Gothenburg," says Niklas Gustavsson, Executive Vice President,
Corporate Sustainability & Public Affairs of the Volvo Group.

With the use of an electric road, vehicle batteries would continuously
be charged wirelessly during operation by transferring energy from
the electricity grid to a vehicle, instead of charging the bus while
it is standing still at charging stations. The technology being
studied is called inductive charging, whereby the energy is
transferred wirelessly to the underside of the vehicle by equipment
built into the road.

The Volvo Group will develop a detailed proposal within the framework
of innovation procurement from the Swedish Transport Administration.
The proposal entails building a road section equipped with wireless
charge technology and developing vehicles that will automatically
charge their batteries when passing such a road section. The road
will be built along a suitable bus line in central Gothenburg and be
tested for public transport. Experiences from such a test track will
provide valuable knowledge for future political and industrial
decisions for establishing electric roads.

For several years, the Volvo Group has been offering hybrid buses with
a traditional diesel engine that is supplemented by an electrical
engine to reduce CO2 emissions. Three Volvo plug-in-hybrid buses are
already in operation in Gothenburg (project Hyper Bus*), which charge
their batteries at the end stations of line 60. The next stage of
development is for these types of buses to be able to charge their
batteries while in operation, thus increasing the distance the buses
can run on pure electricity. And this is exactly what will be studied
now. In 2015, a new bus line, ElectriCity, will become operational
between Chalmers and Lindholmen in Gothenburg. This line will also
provide additional knowledge of charging technology and electric
power for heavy vehicles.

"We are working on both a broad and a deep basis to develop the
technology of tomorrow. Electric roads are another important part of
the puzzle in our aim of achieving transport solutions that will
minimize the impact on the environment," says Niklas Gustavsson.

May 19, 2014

(*Hyper Bus is short for Hybrid and Plug-in Extended Range Bus)

For further information please contact:

Urban Wass, AB Volvo, Research & Innovation Policy, tel +46 (0)31 66
44 36 or +46 (0)739 028 661

Karin Wik, Volvo Group Media Relation, tel. +46 (0)31 323 72 29

For more stories from the Volvo Group, please visit


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