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Powering 18m articulated buses in Cologne

KVB, the public transport company in Cologne in Germany, operates 8 articulated 18-metre buses. KVB chose Heliox to provide the charging infrastructure for these buses.


8 Buses 1 MW Cologne, Germany
Roof-mounted pantograph


Cologne, Germany has been promoting conscious and sustainable energy use since 2011.  In 2016, Heliox provided the charging infrastructure for the eight articulated 18-meter buses, operated by public transport company, Kölner Verkehrs-Betriebe AG (KVB), bringing the city a step further in providing sustainable mobility. On one of the first electric bus lines in Germany, the 13 stops along the seven-kilometre route would link Cologne train station with the city district of Zollstock and transport around 9,000 passengers a day.  


RheinEnergie AG supplies green electricity for charging the buses and partnered with Heliox in powering the 18m buses for the route. At night, buses are fully charged in the bus depot. The pantographs installed on the bus roofs allow charging at one of the three charging stations at both final stops and at some intermediate stops on the route. Charging the batteries takes just five to ten minutes bringing no disruption to the bus schedule.


Cleaner, greener public transport contributes to Cologne’s objectives for responsible energy use and its focus on providing sustainable mobility for a cosmopolitan and modern city. This line decreases particulate matter and CO2 in the Cologne and North Rhine-Westphalia, as well as reducing traffic noise. CO2 reduction is estimated at 520 tons per year.

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