Unlike their diesel counterparts, introducing battery-electric school buses into your fleet requires a little more planning in ways that some districts are not yet ready to tackle. From deciding on the best routes for these electrified models to ensuring they are charged up and ready to go, fleet managers need to understand the full scope of their decisions when going down this road.
Battery-electric school buses offer zero emissions at the tailpipe and a clean and healthy option for districts that have decided on this emerging transportation technology. While not every route is suitable for this type of alternative fuel vehicle, some school districts might be misinformed as to how far these new school bus models can go and how opportunity charging can save the day in many cases.
The Range of Battery-Electric Models
Not all districts are made the same, as no two school bus models are. The range of battery-electric models can scale from 135 to more than 200 miles, depending on the chosen battery size. The use of regenerative braking can add to that range, with power returning to the battery with every stop — and school buses see a lot of them every day. Since most school buses run in the morning and at the end of each day, there are several hours in between when these buses can be recharging for their afternoon shift.
After the choices have been made on the types of electric school buses you need, a number of other questions can pop up: What range can I expect given my routes? When will EVs make economic sense without incentives? How will my CO2 footprint be impacted? What impact will incentives and credits have on my business case? That’s when it’s time to find a partner that can answer those and every other question that might come to mind along the way.
How IC Bus can Help
The team at IC Bus offers many different services to help you get your EV fleet up and started, including:
- Range simulation: We have the ability to take limited route/duty cycle information from a particular vehicle and run it through a simulation that accounts for environmental, geographic, and application variables to determine if the electric school buses under consideration will work for the customers’ use cases over a broad range of scenarios.
- Route analysis: We study a particular route via GPS telemetry or mileage reports to produce an EV recommendation, including charging needs and battery sizing.
- Total cost of ownership (TCO) and sensitivity analysis: A detailed study on what the lifetime ownership costs for a particular application will look like, including sensitivity around the variables that are factored in.
- Business case development: Building off the TCO analysis, we help build business cases on behalf of our customers looking to make the investment into electric school buses. It can be simply guidance, answering questions, and providing accurate assumptions, as well as building an entire business case.
- Fleet analysis: We review our customers’ fleets to determine long-term sustainability plans based on prioritizing routes, minimizing costs, and planning for the future, in case they are planning to increase the number of electric buses and the needed chargers.
While there are a number of different options available to clean up your fleet, battery-electric school buses offer arguably one of the best use cases for this type of technology. Before you start planning your electric school bus strategy, visit icbus.com/electric to get a leg up on moving to this innovative, exciting new technology.