Shanghai is, as far as I’m aware the first city in the world to run fully electric Super Capacitor buses. Rout 11 run through downtown Shanghai with a total of 17 Super Cap Buses. The principle is simple. The bus is similar to a trolley bus but super capacitors are charged at the bus stop rather than having the power cord infrastructure in the air all over the city. I visited the rout yesterday and in particular one of the charging stations. Unfortunately, it got dark before I got there and the photography is not that informative.
Super cap bus charging station, the arrow points at a small spark visible at the moment of releasing the contactor.
When the bus stops at the bus stop a T-shaped connector is raised to touch two connector rods that are fixed under a small roof reaching out over the bus. The connector rods stretch a few meters along the bus stop and the positioning of the bus does thus not need to be very precise. The charging takes just some 30 seconds. The charging typically takes place very third bus stop. Which means that the bus run about 1.5 km between the charging occasions.
Today, I visited the Sunwin factory. Its the largest bus plant I been to. This is where all the Shanghai Volvo B7RLE City buses are made. I felt really proud when seing all the Volvos in the streets. Without knowing for sure I believe Shanghai must be the city with most Volvos in the world. Most of the production is focused on low entry Volvo and Sunwin city buses but also coaches are on the programme. Among the city buses a broad programme is offered: diesel buses, natural gas buses, hybrid buses and super capacitor buses.
Inside a new super cap bus, in the background Toni Fast production manager and Hans Persson development manager stand.
A new Sunwin gas bus.
My fascination for the electric bike trend in China never ends. In a standard western style super market I found a broad offer of different electrical bikes. The smaller, reminding of standard bikes, run in about 20 km/h while the electric scooters make about 50 km/h and have a range of 50 km. The smaller cost about €100 while the premium scooter cost €300. This should be compared to a scooter with a 4 stroke 50 cc engine that costs €500. The electric trend is thus driven by the lower price both for the vehicle and for the fuelling.
Electric bike sale in the super market.
This morning I went jogging in the Century Park. The silence, the birds and the greetings of the morning joggers are similar in many parks in big cities around the world. My lap along the winding paths in the periphery was 5 km. The public gymnastic and chi-gong groups are special in China. Already at dawn old friends gathered around a cd player, set to a barely hear able level. The moves are conducted slowly and jointly.
Disney style bushes in the Century Park.