Stockholm is testing out new electric buses that can wirelessly recharge in only seven minutes, Curbed reports. The Swedish bus system could help the city move away from fossil fuels and provide an international model for more efficient and green mass transit.
The buses are currently being used on a nearly 5-mile route in Södertälje. Overnight and when necessary during the day, the buses park over an essentially invisible charging station located under the road surface, where the wireless inductive charging occurs automatically. The Scania-made hybrid buses also garner power throughout use by breaking.
According to Maria Xylia, a doctoral candidate at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology who is working with the city to test the system, placing charging stations at the most efficient locations around the city could cut energy consumption in half. “The most important question for me is how you’re going to make this technology a reality for the city and help make it fossil fuel free?” says Xylia.
The buses represent Stockholm’s latest effort to create a greener transportation system and help Sweden meet its goal of being carbon-neutral by 2050. Last year, the city achieved its 90 percent fossil-free fuels goal for public buses five years ahead of schedule.
Kelsey E. Thomas is a writer and editor based in the most upper-left corner of the country. She writes about urban policy, equitable development and the outdoors (but also about nearly everything else) with a focus on solutions-oriented journalism. She is a former associate editor and current contributing editor at Next City.