SAG’s kryotanks for Methan electric busses

Local public transport also contributes to the high transport-related pollutant emissions in cities. City buses, for example, run almost exclusively on diesel. Methane electric buses can offer an environmentally friendly solution. The cryo tanks from SAG play an important role in the development of prototypes of this new type of drive.

In order to reduce pollutant emissions in local transport in the long term, the EU has adopted the Clean Vehicle Directive. With this directive, the operators of municipal vehicles in Europe are legally obliged to use an increasingly larger proportion of low-emission vehicles in two steps. In Austria, for example, as in Germany, 45 % of newly purchased vehicles must be “clean” by 2021 and 65 % by 2026.

For this challenge, the Bavarian company CM Fluids has developed an innovative mobility solution for cities and municipalities. The start-up company offers the conversion of diesel-powered municipal vehicles such as city buses to a drive system using liquid methane. Using a special process, the easily transportable and CO2-neutral liquid methane (LBM: Liquefied Bio-Methane) is produced from biogas. In combination with a drive system developed by CM Fluids, the CMF Drive, it is possible to operate buses in public transport economically and without CO2 emissions. The drive is powered by an LBM-operated gas engine, which charges a battery for the electric axle drive that simultaneously stores recovered braking energy. The engine’s waste heat is used for air conditioning of the buses. Initial calculations show that this innovative system can save up to 50 % fuel compared with a conventional diesel bus.

CM Fluids brought SAG into the team as a partner for the LBM tank solution: “It quickly became clear to us that SAG, as the technology leader for cryotanks, was the ideal system partner”, says Dr. Hans Friedmann, CEO of CM Fluids AG. Dr. Markus Ostermeier, head of the CMF Drive business unit, adds: “We worked hand in hand with the SAG Business Development Team to produce a tank system specially tailored to our needs. The first prototype of the methane electric bus will go into test operation in the middle of the year. The environmentally friendly bus should be ready for series production as early as next year – with cryotanks made by SAG”.