To help transportation companies around the nation comply with strict anti-idling laws, Gary Bauer of Bauer's Intelligent Transportation introduced a bus featuring the new Solar Hybrid Bus Powering System at BusCon in Chicago last week.
The Solar Bus consists of four thin film solar panels that run the length of the bus and charge an on-board battery bank. When the bus engine is off, the batteries power the air-conditioning and wireless connectivity equipment, enabling the buses to effectively meet anti-idling standards without compromising passenger comfort.
The new prototype will have smaller overall footprint of the assembly, so it will be able to fit in a variety of bus sizes, according to Bauer, who has had the bus operating as part of his fleet since last January with solid results.
Benefits of the new bus include the ability to use the sun to power busses as well as run all interior components, such as auxiliary heat and air conditioning, according to Bauer. He also stressed that there are grants available for the conversions to solar power.
Bauer said the new bus may also provide a savings of up to $14,000 in fuel per bus per year and reduce up to 345,000 grams of NOx per bus per year as well as conform to the Airborne Toxic Control Measure, which states that a vehicle cannot idle for more than five minutes and, only 30 seconds, within 100 feet of a school.