Farewell to Long Charging and Short Radius

Photo: ABB

Cities around the world face the challenge of finding solutions for public transportation that can reduce harmful gas emissions and noise, and at the same time reduce operating costs to a minimum. With increasing levels of air pollution and a stronger effort by the community to have eco-friendly and clean transportation, electric city buses are an ideal chance for improvement of urban life. The ABB’s automated rapid charging system allows zero CO2 emissions on public transport and city bus 24/7 continuous movement. Long bus loading times and short radius of motion belong to the past.

Overnight charging

Overnight charging allows e-buses to be connected and charged while parked at the bus depot. Chargers can be configured to offer 50 kW to 150 kW of high-power fast charging. A single 150 kW charger charges up to 3 buses reducing the total charge load from 450 kW to 150 kW.


  • In an overnight session (6 hours) three 300 kWh buses can be fully charged
  • Very cost-effective solution with the introduction of three charge boxes with low-cost maintenance
  • Ability to remotely “wake up” buses for top-up charging (100% SOC) and heating & air conditioning
  • Supporting all open charging standards globally (CCS and OCPP compliant)
  • Flexible design for the roof and floor mounting
  • Remote diagnostics and management tools

Opportunity charging

OppCharge is an automated, fast-charging system, which allows electric city buses to drive 24/7, thus enabling true zero-emission public transport in cities. With its automated rooftop connection and a typical charge time of 3–6 minutes, the system can easily be integrated in existing bus lines by installing chargers at endpoints, terminals and/or intermediate stops.


  • Charge electric buses in 3–6 minutes
  • Easy integration into existing bus lines
  • Automated 4-pole rooftop connection
  • Based on international IEC 61851-23 standard
  • Safe and reliable connection
  • Remote diagnostics and management tools
  • Modular system
  • Power available from 150 kW to 600 kW

Flash charging

The solution called TOSA looks like a regular trolleybus, except when you look on the roof. Instead of the usual trolley poles to overhead lines, this e-bus has a controlled moving arm that connects, in less than a second, to an overhead receptacle integrated into the bus shelter. The high-power flash-charging technology is activated and feeds the onboard batteries to 20 seconds as passengers are getting on and off the bus. The bus wastes no time and is ready to leave. TOSA is developed for high-frequency bus routes in key urban areas that carry large numbers of passengers at peak times.


  • Fully automated fast charging stations installed at some bus stops
  • Catenary-free operation
  • 20-second charging time
  • Short-range and cost-optimal onboard batteries
  • Battery capacity from 70 to 130 kWh
  • Solution for 18 and 24 meters buses
  • Zero-emission mass transit solution
  • No communication required between infrastructures and buses the
  • Same time table, frequency, the quantity of passengers and buses as diesel flee
  • Energy storage for peak shaving can be proposed according to local grid requirements and line operation

ABB entered the market of electric vehicle chargers in 2010. So far, it has sold more than 10,500 high-speed ABB’s DC chargers in 76 countries all around the world – which is more than any other manufacturer. Based on this experience, ABB has created an exceptional high-power electric vehicle system which has many advantages. ABB chargers are used in production plants and control facilities around the world, including extreme environments such as those in the Arctic and deserts. Many of ABB’s chargers are used 24/7 for intensive testing, 360 days a year by car and bus manufacturers such as BMW, Volkswagen and Volvo Buses. Fortune Magazine has recently ranked ABB eight in the list of “world changing” companies, due to the progress it has made in e-mobility and the charging of electric vehicles.

This article was published in the new issue of Energy portal Magazine CLIMATE CHANGE, September – November 2019.