Frankfurt's In-der-City-Bus Embraces Hydrogen-Powered Buses

In-der-City-Bus GmbH (ICB), the esteemed public transport management company of Frankfurt am Main, has recently sealed an agreement to acquire
Hydrogen-Powered Buses
Hydrogen-Powered BusesSolaris

In-der-City-Bus GmbH (ICB), the esteemed public transport management company of Frankfurt am Main, has recently sealed an agreement to acquire 10 cutting-edge hydrogen-powered buses from Solaris. This strategic move comes as Frankfurt strives to enhance its sustainable urban mobility infrastructure. Already, the metropolis has witnessed the successful operation of 13 Urbino hydrogen vehicles since 2022. Notably, ICB plans to establish its very own hydrogen refueling station by mid-year. The newly ordered buses are expected to integrate seamlessly into the ICB fleet during the first quarter of 2024.

Frankfurt am Main, one of Germany's largest cities, relies on the municipal transport company In-der-City-Bus GmbH to operate three comprehensive bus bundles, covering over 50 percent of the city's bus services. With a commendable fleet of 228 vehicles, ICB effectively operates 34 routes round the clock, 365 days a year, providing essential transportation services to the city's residents. The dedicated team at ICB consists of approximately 750 individuals, including skilled bus drivers, workshop professionals, and administrative staff. In harmony with Frankfurt's climate protection goals, ICB is determined to electrify its entire bus fleet by the early 2030s. Already demonstrating a commitment to environmentally friendly connections and comfortable urban mobility, the company currently deploys battery-powered Solaris Urbino 12 electric vehicles and hydrogen-powered Solaris models for passenger transport.

In recent days, the prestigious carrier concluded a meticulous tender process to acquire an additional 10 hydrogen buses, ultimately selecting Solaris as the trusted supplier. The ICB opted for the same hydrogen-powered model, the Urbino 12 hydrogen, as in the previous order. The newly contracted buses will boast similar equipment to the hydrogen buses already familiar to the citizens of Frankfurt, ensuring a seamless transition.

Operating on highly efficient hydrogen fuel cells, these buses produce only heat and water vapor as by-products, embodying a true commitment to environmental sustainability. The electricity generated through the process of reverse electrolysis is directly transmitted to the axle, empowering the bus with the force of two electric motors. To further augment the performance and capabilities of these buses, each ordered vehicle will be equipped with an additional Solaris High Power battery. This energy storage unit serves as a valuable auxiliary during peak energy demand and the recuperation process. Ensuring safety at the highest standards, the hydrogen will be stored in gas form within roof-mounted composite tanks.

The Solaris Urbino 12 hydrogen buses will boast a range of state-of-the-art Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) to provide comprehensive support to the drivers. Notably, the MirrorEye system, consisting of strategically placed cameras replacing traditional side mirrors, will enhance visibility in various weather conditions. Solaris is scheduled to deliver these exceptional buses during the first quarter of 2024, with the total order value estimated at approximately €6.5 million.

Across cities worldwide, the deployment of hydrogen buses for regular urban traffic is on the rise, drawing the attention of transportation operators. Solaris, a pioneering European manufacturer, has been at the forefront of hydrogen bus technology development for nearly a decade. The company has successfully delivered almost 120 fuel cell vehicles to 15 European cities, solidifying its position as the largest European manufacturer in this domain. Building upon their success, Solaris introduced an articulated model, the Urbino 18 hydrogen, to its hydrogen portfolio last year.

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