Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona (TMB) has taken another step towards new mobility with zero emissions with the resolution of the tender called to supply eight new hydrogen-powered electric fuel cell buses, the first intended for regular service in an urban network in Spain. The winner of the tender has been the Portuguese manufacturer Caetano Bus, which will supply the eight vehicles in 2021 for an amount of 6.4 million euros, VAT included.
The acquisition of the eight electric fuel cell vehicles is part of TMB’s strategic option for the modernization and environmentalisation of the bus fleet, always with the criterion of green purchasing (choosing the most environmentally friendly product available) and electrification progressive.
The Ministry of Industry has praised TMB’s initiative to adopt hydrogen, a key element in decarbonising transport. The Government’s roadmap envisages that between 2030 and 200 buses powered by this energy will run in Spain in 2030.
Alarcón: “We must always be at the forefront of sustainable mobility”
The president of TMB, Rosa Alarcón , valued: “As a company with a vocation for leadership, we are committed to innovation and the fight against pollution in cities, with the aim of achieving cleaner mobility for the future. In this sense, TMB must always be at the forefront of sustainable and efficient mobility, which is why today we are taking another step in improving the fleet with this purchase of clean propulsion buses, and we are not limited to purchasing vehicles, we are also committed to enhance the infrastructure needed to promote this type of energy with measures such as the construction of a hydrogen plant ”.
Hydrogen, the most abundant element in the universe, is an energy vector of great versatility that is destined to play a major role in the transport, storage, and instant conversion into useful energy, of various forms of energy. The use of hydrogen for transportation is advancing thanks to technological development linked to fuel cells.
A process called reverse electrolysis takes place in the fuel cell, by which hydrogen reacts with oxygen. Hydrogen comes from one or more tanks in the vehicle, while oxygen is captured from the ambient air. The only derivative of this reaction is the electricity generated, heat and water, which is expelled in the form of steam through the exhaust pipe.
Autonomy of 300 kilometers
The eight buses acquired by TMB will be of the H2 City Gold LHD model from Caetano, 12 meters long, and its technological core will be the fuel cell, from the Japanese firm Toyota, 60 kilowatts. The motorization and the electronic part will be provided by Siemens. The manufacturer estimates a daily consumption of 20 kilos of hydrogen and a range of 300 kilometers. They will arrive in Barcelona in November 2021 with the forecast that they will join the service at the beginning of 2022.
The vehicles will be assigned to the Zona Franca Business Operations Center and will be supplied with vehicular hydrogen at the refueling plant to be built in the same estate from the agreement signed by TMB and the Zona Franca Consortium last June. The plant, the first in Spain with a public vocation, will supply around 160 kilos of hydrogen of renewable origin daily to TMB’s eight cars and will also serve other companies in the area and individuals. The construction of the plant is currently in the bidding phase.
The acquisition of the 8 hydrogen vehicles is supported by the European program JIVE 2 for the promotion of fuel cell and zero-emissions vehicles, co-financed by the European Union, in which TMB is the only Spanish operator participating. The project is promoted with the collaboration of the Barcelona Metropolitan Transport Authority (ATM).