electric bus at charging station
VTA Electric Buses Will Use Pioneering Charging Technology
Stacey Hendler Ross

As VTA prepares to roll out brand new, all-electric buses, we are teaming up with Prospect Silicon Valley, and Bay Area tech companies to pilot a cutting-edge system that will manage charging those buses while keeping stress on the state’s electric grid to a minimum. 

VTA recently purchased 5 battery-powered electric buses, expected to be in service within a month, with plans to add 5 more next year.

The charging pilot project, funded by the California Energy Commission, will serve as a major case study for transit agencies throughout the country, particularly as California approaches its goal for all transit fleets to be zero emissions by 2040. 

Click here to see a recorded version of our Facebook Live Post from today's VTA /Prospect Silicon Valley Press Conference.

Oakland-based software company, Kisensum, has developed a system that optimizes the charging of VTA’s new Proterra electric buses to ensure minimal stress on California’s electric grid. The National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL), in Denver Colorado, is driving the research on this pioneering effort.

This four-year “Vehicle to Grid Integration” (VGI) project will be closely followed by the public transit industry and other transportation providers, as they begin planning for their own fleet transitions to electric buses. The project will apply integrated systems to reduce charging costs through demand management and demand response.

“This project will provide a critical cornerstone towards moving our entire fleet to zero emission vehicles,” says Nuria Fernandez, VTA General Manager and CEO. “We are excited to be partnering with nationally recognized industry experts on this important project that will advance the state’s strategic electrification goals.”

The first 5 VTA electric buses will hit the streets of Santa Clara County sometime in May or June on various routes.  Stay tuned for more details as we get closer!

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