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Electric, Hydrogen & Hybrid Electric Buses in Ireland



  • Registered Users Posts: 142 ✭✭ Trouwe Ier

    I am confused and somewhat dismayed about this:

    a) Confused because I understood that of the 120 EWs (many of which have already been manufactured), 100 were for Dublin and 20 for Limerick. There had been no mention whatsoever of any proposal to deploy EWs in Galway, which in any event, has 41 PADs, all of which are less than 2 years old.

    b) Dismayed to hear Stephen Kent (BÉ CEO) say that "electric buses" were coming to Limerick "by the end of this year" when it was my understanding from previous publicity that they were due to enter service in early 2023 AND that a few vehicles were to be provided for training as soon as last summer (2022). There is no visible evidence of any progress on "civils" at Roxboro and that is, quite obviously, the reason for the delay but planning permission had been granted a few years back and I would have thought that while these are significant works, they are not not HUGE works so I wonder did they tender in time. It took about three months to do the works at Athlone.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8 AX636

    A little update for electric buses, this is for Summerhill only tho!

  • Registered Users Posts: 759 ✭✭✭ p_haugh

    Has the charging infastructure been installed yet? Or is the plan to get it done in time for delivery in April?

  • Registered Users Posts: 8 AX636

  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,220 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk

    Building the substation and upgrading cables too it if necessary is usually what takes most of the time to install charging points. Installing the actual charging points themselves is usually relatively fast.

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  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,220 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk

    BTW Does anyone know what is happening with the N2 route?

    Will it be launched at the same time as the O route? Launched before summer?

    Also will the N2 use electric buses too and single or double deckers?

  • Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 9,455 Mod ✭✭✭✭ CatInABox

    Not sure on the first three, but on the last one, as far as I know, there's no need for anything unusual for the N2, so it'll almost certainly be double decker buses. The O is only single decker because of that low bridge on the southside, otherwise it'd be double deckers too.

  • Registered Users Posts: 16,218 ✭✭✭✭ LXFlyer

    Everything is entirely dependent on there being sufficient drivers available. Both those routes will require brand new staff so I'm not holding my breath.

  • Registered Users Posts: 759 ✭✭✭ p_haugh

    Would the single deckers be able to fit through the Cabra gate (for the potential N2 routing via Phoenix Park)? Or is it the case that the gate isnt accessible at all for buses?

    Post edited by p_haugh on

  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,220 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk

    Yes, I originally assumed that it would be regular double deckers, but then I started wondering given that at least originally the N2 was supposed to be launched at the same time as the O route. I was wondering if there was a reason for that, why launch it with the O, rather then when the N4 and N6 launched?

    Just seemed strange, I was wondering if maybe they plan in using the new electric Wright double deckers on it. Shorter circular route that doesn’t venture far from the depot might be a good route to test out the new electric deckers on. Also lack of pollution when running through more residential areas.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 680 ✭✭✭ mikeybhoy

    These electric buses are not on trial they have been ordered the NTA so Tey should be able to handle any route don't you think?

  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,220 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk

    Perhaps "trial" is the wrong word, more of a case of helping to become familiar with a brand new vehicle and a different operating model. An opportunity to work out any kinks that might be discovered during rollout. Better to roll them out on a very short route, that runs close to 4 depots along the route, then for instance just tossing them on any long route and potentially suffer embarrassing break downs far from a depot.

    I can't speak for bus operation, but as a software engineer, this approach is the norm in IT. Even when you launch into production, you normally first do a limited rollout, to a smaller number of early access customers, just to see how it is working in the real world and make any tweaks before going into full wide access. See Googles early launch of Gmail, which was extremely limited to invite only customers for the first few months.

    You can do all the testing and trials you want, but often real world operations turn up unexpected challenges.

    I don't know if this is needed or not, but to my engineering mind, it would be prudent to be cautious with the rollout of any new vehicle, never mind one so radically different.

    BTW I'd also wouldn't necessarily say that these EV deckers can run just any route. The very long routes to the likes of Balbrigan and Skerries might be to long for their battery range (all day running).

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,294 ✭✭✭ john boye

    Not sure what you mean by embarrassing breakdowns? New buses practically always break down.

  • Registered Users Posts: 680 ✭✭✭ mikeybhoy

    Exactly what I can't understand why the NTA put in an order for 600 electric buses without trialing them first. Testing out different models and the like kind of like what they for the hybrids with the WH, VH and AH.

  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,220 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk

    Sure, but no one cares when a new Diesel bus breaks down, but a shiny new Electric bus, that will generate all sorts of click bait articles with the media and outrage on Joe Duffy!

    Best to be avoided or at least reduced if they can.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,294 ✭✭✭ john boye

    I know what you're saying about the pr element to an extent but you've sort of said it yourself, it's completely new technology. They will break down unfortunately and will probably continue to for a good while after they enter service, it can't just be avoided by putting them on a short route for a while.

    Post edited by john boye on

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,813 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990

    I do agree why you do need to test the waters in how these new electric buses are going to work in the real world when they get into passenger service.

    Installing a software update in the buses is a great way in being an effective deterrent in the allowing the operators to either find out about & resolve any potential problems like breakdowns early on when they begin their entry into their route networks.

    When you think about it; these new electric single deckers are going to be put out on their clockwise/anti-clockwise route which will ultimately see them out for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for most days of the year.

    The O route will be constantly linking up with every spine that will be built into the new bus network in the GDA by picking up and dropping off passengers when the spines get rolled out over the next years.

    That's really going to be daunting challenge for them if they go out into the real world with unresolved issues while operating within a real world setting on the streets of Dublin.

    That is why the O route in Dublin is a hugely important route to not to mess these issues up when they go out into service. If the drivers with all of their passengers are noticing these issues early on while these buses to out in service in an untested environment. That would be a huge fail for the NTA and Dublin Bus to resolve in the interim.

    Could you imagine the number of complaints that could come from these people about these unresolved issues in the short term?

    They could initially overwhelm the ability of Dublin Bus to actually run a proper and sustainable bus service for the people of Dublin. And we all know that is not what we want to see taking place on a frequent basis.

    We all want to see both the O route and the new electric buses to become a success for the people of Dublin. That is the main reason why we are seeing them go out on route training in Athlone for the past few weeks.

    The testing is there for a reason. It is there to not make fools of ourselves if things do potentially go wrong. If the software updates for the buses are to prevent these issues in the interim. That is when being prudent comes to you as a huge advantage.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,813 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990

    There are more new photos of the new EA's earning service rollout in Athlone today from The Wanderers photo site on Smugmug.

    The pictures of the buses look great. Fair play to them. It appears like they will become a very popular sight in Athlone over the coming months.

  • Registered Users Posts: 759 ✭✭✭ p_haugh

    Are the destination displays on the EAs different to those found on the PAs? From the pictures here, the displays seem a fair bit more dense and clearer to see, especially the side and rear displays.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,813 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990

    The Microsoft Connector electric buses are up and running in Dublin. These are the Higer Steed buses. They do a route from Honey Park near Monkstown Farm. What is the other terminus for this route?

    The video below is from YouTube. It suggests that the route passes Dún Laoghaire.

  • Registered Users Posts: 680 ✭✭✭ mikeybhoy

    One of those doing the Holiday Inn shuttle at the airport atm very strange looking bus. Think it might be on a trial as it has TFI Local Link branding on it even though it's not a NTA affiliated service of any description.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,813 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990

    From Dublin Commuter Coalition's Twitter account on 9th of February.

    91 additional Electroliner Streetdecks ordered

    10 additional single deck EA's from ADL ordered

    Also the 24 PA's coming to NTA Fleet are going to Dublin Bus.

    W4/W6 routes with GAI will be run with SG's.

  • Registered Users Posts: 190 ✭✭ DaBluBoi

    Which garage do yall reckon the PAs are going to? Harristown?

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,813 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990

    This is a good review on the Higer 12m electric bus. It is a pity that he didn't sound the bell on it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,813 ✭✭✭ dublinman1990

    A Youtube blogger from NI has a video here showing the inside one of the Bus Eireann EW's at Wrights. Although there was 2 buses in the video. The 2nd bus at the very back was used as a demonstration in showing the rear, sides and lower deck of the bus.

    The video doesn't have great picture quality however it was taken 3 weeks ago.

  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 21,220 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk

    Looks nice, though, fancy London getting leather seats! :)

  • Registered Users Posts: 817 ✭✭✭ d51984

    Stagecoach in Scotland has taken delivery of 25 new 10.8m Volvo BZL Electric single deck buses, be interesting to see how these fare out and weather they will be of interest to the NTA in the future.

    Its a disgrace Joe!

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1 EVBusFan

    Does anyone know have the larger version of this Table seen in the Greater Dublin Area Transport Strategy that includes the regional cities on the timeline, I remember seeing it somewhere but cannot find the Document that contains it.