Heliox fast charges Volvo’s first all-electric buses in Luxembourg

June 16, 2017

Heliox has successfully delivered 3 Heliox Fast Charge Systems with OppCharge interface in the city of Differdange in Luxembourg. The electric buses run through the city center and are charged at end of the route with 300kW. Charge systems are located at Gerlache Station in the city center and Am Mai at the hospital. The third charge system charges both previously delivered plug-in hybrids as well as the fully-electric buses of Volvo at Sales-Lentz’ depot.

For Heliox, as a global market leader in fast charge systems for public transport, mining, and port equipment, this project marks the continuation of the collaboration with Sales-Lentz and Volvo Buses. We are proud to have delivered this exciting project with these strong partners, who share our vision of electric mobility future. Our pursuit to continuously excel in quality, high capacity and efficient charging will empower the city of Differdange to meet its requirements regarding lowering noise and pollution levels.

As said by Georges Hilbert, Technical Director at Sales Lentz: “Differdange is an industrial city with narrow streets, many one ways, and noise is more critical than in a capital city with wide boulevards.” The company’s general director, Wolfgang Schroeder said: “I believe in electro-mobility, with either opportunity charging or overnight charging, depending on the application and line - it is an investment for the future.”

The buses in Differdange run their service with opportunity charging (fast charging at end stops). The charging system connects automatically to the bus by a pantograph- every half an hour during the day for fast charging at 300kW for 3-6 minutes. Heliox technology enables these short charging times. The overnight charging at the depot will charge the battery of the bus fully in 3-4h.

Charges Volvos first

The 4 Differdange lines have a length between 8 and 9.5km each and have between 14 and 18 stops each. They are all driven intact of 30 minutes, meaning 25 minutes to drive the line and 5 minutes available for fast charging. Georges Hilbert has said: “The good news, we notice together with Volvo, that the energy consumption is lower than expected, and the state of charge of the battery is still quite high after having driven one line. This means that the fast charge is much shorter and only lasts 2-3 minutes with the 300kW charger from Heliox.”

“Electric bus systems are a cost-efficient solution for cities to reduce the problems of poor air quality and noise. Emission-free, silent buses also open up entirely new possibilities for urban planning”, says Håkan Agnevall, President Volvo Buses.

OppCharge is an open standard interface between electric buses and chargers. The OppCharge system includes automatic contacting by a pantograph, wireless communication, contacting plates, and infrastructure equipment that automatically contacts vehicles with a pantograph. Since the equipment features standardized open architecture, every city is able to make its individual choice for charging infrastructure supplier. This also indicates that electrified buses of many different makes can use the same charging stations.

About Heliox Automotive

Heliox is the global market leader in fast charging systems within public transport, marine, mining, and port equipment. The premium quality and highly efficient chargers enable operators to improve their performance while lowering environmental impact. Heliox operates on a global level with headquarters in the Netherlands and local offices in the UK, Australia, Singapore, and India.

  • Global market leader with the largest installed base in Megawatts (MW).
  • The unique combination of CCS depot charging systems from 25 to 150kW and Opportunity Charge System with power up to 600kW.
  • All 3 standardised interfaces available: CCS, Roof-mounted & OppCharge
  • Designed for high efficiency and robustness.
  • TüV, CE certified series production.
  • Member of UITP, European Standardisation Initiative of charging infrastructure and bus manufacturers for interoperability, following IEC 61851, the international standard for fast charging of electric vehicles.


  • The open interface between charging station and vehicle
  • Offering charging power of 150 kW or 300 kW
  • Charging takes 3-6 minutes
  • An inverted pantograph enables the use of a low-cost and low-weight interface on the roof of the bus.
  • Conductive static charging with pantograph where communication between bus and charging station is done via WIFI

Volvo 7900 Electric

  • All-electric two-axle 12-meter long city bus with low floor and three doors.
  • 80 % lower energy consumption than a corresponding diesel bus.
  • Quiet, emission-free operation
  • Equipped with an electric motor and lithium-ion batteries.
  • The batteries can be charged at the end stops in three to six minutes.
  • Bright and airy interior.
  • 85 passengers.

*Recharging time depends on topography, load, and climate conditions.