Amsterdam Schiphol Airport hailed on Wednesday the commissioning of 35 e-buses supplied by Chinese electric auto maker BYD. This fleet of pure electric e-buses is now in full service transporting passengers between their planes and the terminal buildings.
Each of these 35 e-buses has its own charging point at the parking area for buses on the site of Schiphol Airport, making Schiphol the largest charging station for electric buses in Europe. To take the sustainability of the buses even further, Schiphol uses power generated by their own field of solar panels to charge the buses.
Schiphol Airport attaches great importance to improving and pioneering, and aims to be one of the most sustainable airports in the world, said Jos Nijhuis, CEO of Schiphol, at the ceremony.
Schiphol worked together with BYD intensively on the design and features of the e-buses to guarantee passenger comfort and riding experience. Custom made for Schiphol, these e-buses carry a smaller battery as they do not cover hundreds of kilometers a day, which give more space on board for passengers and their baggage, explained Nijhuis.
"The outcome has been good," he said. "We have achieved a fantastic product together, and we moved forward in terms of sustainability and innovation. We now have 35 electrical buses that we obviously can be proud of, which we can and will showcase to other airports in Europe and beyond."
BYD was chosen by Schiphol authorities after a competitive European tender process in 2013. Isbrand Ho, Managing Director of BYD Europe, told Xinhua that one of the key elements of these e-buses is the battery, as the focal point of an electric bus is of course its electricity supply.
"We currently are the only electric bus manufacturer who produces our own battery for our buses. The whole electric system on the bus including the electric motor, the battery, and the electric control system, it is one ecosystem working together," he said.
Since the Schiphol fleet entered service six months ago, the 35 e-buses have accumulated a total mileage of approximately 338,000 km with an average energy consumption of 1.2 kWh/km. They have saved approximately 312,000 kg of CO2 emissions, according to BYD.
BYD is the world's largest producer of pure electric buses - more than 3,000 are in service with the mileage of a single bus exceeding 287,000km.
Schiphol's record-breaking fleet will hold its title of the largest electric bus fleet in Europe for only a few months: in mid-2016 a fleet of 51 BYD ebuses will start service with Transport for London. "Where Schiphol leads today, other airports can follow tomorrow," said Ho.