A Solaris Urbino bus, Source: City of Poznan

А hydrogen transformation in sight for Poznan’s public transport

А hydrogen transformation in sight for Poznan’s public transport

Dozens of new hydrogen buses could be seen on the Polish city’s streets in a few years’ time

The public transport operator of Poznan wants to take a big step towards sustainable mobility and clean air. As local authorities informed on Monday, MPK Poznan has applied for national co-funding for the purchase of 84 buses powered on hydrogen.

The move came as representatives of the company and city authorities tested the capabilities of such vehicles.

Making Poznan’s public transport emissions-free

When Poznan representatives were presented with the technology of hydrogen vehicles for public transportation in the summer of 2019,  they regarded it as a technology of the future. In early 2021, however, it seems that the future has arrived for the Polish city, struggling with air pollution.

With no way of purchasing such buses with municipal funds, one of the largest Polish cities decided to apply for national funding under the "Green Public Transport" program. The latter projects aimed to reduce the use of emission fuels in transport.

MPK Poznan, therefore, applied for the financial assistance to purchase as many as 84 Solaris Urbino hydrogen buses, hoping to have up to 90% of the costs covered by the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management. If the application is successful, the operator promises to launch the respective purchasing procedure and acquire 38 vehicles with a standard length of 12 meters and 46 articulated buses 18 of metres between 2022-2025.

“We would like buses to be equipped with modern fuel cells that will act as "power plants" on board the vehicle. The generated electricity will drive the vehicle, and the only products of the reaction taking place in the cell will be heat and water vapour”, explains Marek Grzybowski, Vice President of the Management Board of MPK Poznań quoted on the city website.

In view of the prospective application for a big number of buses, city officials, including Mayor Jacek Jaskowiak met Solaris Buch & Coach representatives on Sunday for a test ride. They explored the low-floor models with a ramp for wheelchair users, equipped with monitoring and air conditioning systems.

“Thanks to the technology used, the bus will be able to cover a minimum of 350 km on a single refuelling” explained Mateusz Figaszewski from Solaris Buch & Coach during the tests. “Electricity is generated on board using a fuel cell. Then it is transferred to the drive system and a small battery. The vehicle, apart from water vapour, does not generate any harmful substances”.

Finally, MPK Poznań also examines the possibility of supplying hydrogen to a refuelling station, which it intends to ultimately build for its own needs. They believe that such hydrogen refuelling stations will be available before the arrival of first buses, already next year.


Also read: Poznan wants to power its buses with electricity from waste

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