Back to news

Helsinki regional transport route 23 gets a fully electric, low-floor Volvo 7900 electric bus with both OppCharge pantograph and CCS2 cable charging

Volvo Buses, Kempower and Helsingin Bussiliikenne are introducing a fully electric Volvo 7900 Electric bus to the HSL route 23 in Helsinki, starting September 1, 2020. The pilot project brings the first OppCharge pantograph fast charging system to Finland, and also includes a CCS2 cable fast charging alternative. The project aims to collect experiences of both charging technologies in a Nordic urban transport environment.

Volvo electric buses have been widely used in Europe since their introduction in 2015. Being a low-floor bus, the Volvo 7900 Electric bus offers good accessibility with a step-free entry and exit for passengers.

Tommi Pyöriä, Sales Manager of Volvo Finland Ab

With no exhaust gases, fully electric buses are environmentally friendly, quiet and offer a comfortable transport experience. The Volvo 7900 electric is available as a two-axis bus and as a three-axis articulated alternative. Route 23 will be operated with the two-axis version.

A unique fast-charging system — a combination of OppCharge pantograph and CCS2 cable charging

With this project, Finland will get its first OppCharge charging station with the tried-and-tested pantograph charging for buses. OppCharge uses a standardized communication protocol, and it is already used in 13 countries.

Tommi Pyöriä

The OppCharge connector rails mounted on the vehicle weigh only 15 kg. And with no moving or serviceable parts, the charging connector offers extreme reliability and easy positioning of the vehicle. With the route 23 pilot, both the OppCharge pantograph and a CCS2 cable fast charging are available at the same charging station. Combining these two methods offers ultimate charging reliability and flexibility to test both charging technologies. CCS2 cable fast charging is carried out with the Kempower S-Series intelligent charging satellite pole.

Both the OppCharge pantograph station and the Kempower charging satellite pole are powered by a 200 kW Kempower C-Series modular power unit with five power modules. They operate independently to ensure supreme redundancy and a fail-proof power supply on any occasion

Erik Kanerva

The pilot project combines leading Nordic knowhow in electric buses, charging infrastructure, and regional traffic operations

The pilot project is carried out by Volvo Finland Ab, Kempower Oy, and Helsingin Bussiliikenne Oy. The bus route 23 will start from the Helsinki Central Railway Station, pass through Pasila, and end at the Invalidisäätiö Foundation in Ruskeasuo. The route has 24 stops and the total trip duration for this route is approximately 33 minutes.

The project aims to collect experiences of both charging technologies in a Nordic urban transport environment.

By operating the bus on a daily route in downtown Helsinki, we can test and gain valuable experience of using different charging technologies in our climate and road conditions.

In the near future, regional traffic will become more and more electric. This pilot with a compact and effective combination of cable and pantograph DC fast-charging gives us a cost-effective and flexible way to test electric bus charging. And prepare us for bigger electric bus fleets and routes to come.

Michael Andersson, Technical Director of Helsingin Bussiliikenne Oy

The route 23 pilot will be executed in two steps — first with cable charging for the first months, and then the OppCharge pantograph charging station in early 2021.

For more information

Volvo Finland Ab
Tommi Pyöriä
Sales Manager
Tel. +358 500 680309

Helsingin Bussiliikenne Oy / Koiviston Auto Group
Michael Andersson
Technical Director
Tel. +358 50 435 8014

Kempower Oy
Erik Kanerva
Sales Director
Tel. +358 40 5239355

About Kempower:

Kempower designs and manufactures DC fast charging solutions for electric vehicles and machines. We’re a team of electric vehicle enthusiasts with a deep understanding of the charging market and a hands-on mentality. Our product development and production are rooted in Finland, with a majority of our materials and components sourced locally. We focus on all areas of transportation, from personal cars and commercial vehicles to mining equipment, boats and motorsports. With Kemppi Group’s 70 years’ experience in perfecting DC power supplies, we set the bar high in engineering and user-experience design. Kempower is listed in the Nasdaq First North Growth Market Finland.