TOSA, or Trolleybus Optimisation Système Alimentation, is a new electric bus charging system that only takes 15 seconds to power up. It is now being tested in Geneva, Switzerland.
The system currently in place has the vehicles constantly connected to overhead trolley cables or they simply have to attempt to run entire routes on one charge. The new system will have buses charging at every third or fourth stop using a device installed at the stop that engages with the roof using a laser guidance system. Once connected the mechanism delivers a 15-second-long 400-kilowatt boost to the bus’ batteries as passengers are getting on and off.
TOSA enables flexible routes and eliminates the need for messy and somewhat unsightly overhead cables. Additionally all of the electricity used comes from hydropower, so no CO2 is emitted at any point in the process.
The project is a collaboration between Geneva’s public transport company (TGP), the Office for the Promotion of Industries and Technologies (OPI), and the Geneva power utilities SIG and ABB. The trial will begin with a route from Geneva airport to the Palexpo exhibition system and if it succeeds Geneva will be the world’s first city to use this concept and one step further towards a greener transport system.