Testing E-Mobility in Fleet Operations – CO2-Free Delivery in Bonn – CO2 Gogreen
Project duration: 7/2012 - 12/2016
Funded by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU), promotional reference: 16EM1032
In times of constantly high fuel prices, tightening CO2 emissions and urban air quality legislations, the transport sector with its almost exclusive dependence on fossil fuels, will likely face a radical change in the coming years. This holds especially true for transport or parcel service providers, as they strongly rely on vehicles with internal combustion engines. In this context, the replacement of conventionally propelled fleets of delivery vans with alternatively fueled vehicles is essential. Especially electric drivetrain technologies have the potential to play an important role in the vehicle fleets’ reorganization, as their typical disadvantages – limited range and low speed – are not crucial in urban driving cycles, while they retain known advantages, such as economic efficiency and (locally) zero emissions.
The goal of this joint research project with two further institutes at the RWTH Aachen University (Institute for Power Generation and Storage Systems, PGS; Deutsche Post Chair of Optimization of Distribution Networks) and two industrial partners (Deutsche Post AG, Langmatz GmbH) is to identify the operational suitability of a large-scale fleet of electric delivery vans under a variety of operating conditions (seasonality, daily mileage, recharging strategies), and over a long period of time.
In particular, FCN aims at an economic and ecological evaluation of switching to an electric vehicle fleet with the use of various methodological approaches. These are:
- Optimization of battery charging strategies regarding numerous framework conditions, e.g. costs of the charging infrastructure (depending on a fast-charging option), electricity prices (depending on the availability of time-variant tariffs), battery degradation (depending on the charging regime), user behavior, conditions of the electric grid (e.g. CO2 emissions from power generation), and driving profile (depending on itinerary planning and segmentation of postal zones);
- Calculation of the economically optimal conversion strategy for a vehicle fleet from conventional to electric vehicles over time, taking uncertainty in the future development of battery and electricity prices into account;
- Life-cycle analysis of electric vehicles compared to vehicles with internal combustion engine, also considering the influence of various framework conditions (emission intensity of electricity production, charging regime, daily mileage etc.) on vehicle greenhouse gas emissions; and
- Investigation of the impacts that different charging strategies may exert on grid connection costs, energy supply costs, and power plants emissions.
The final focus of the project is to use the results from this comprehensive assessment for making science-based policy recommendations and for providing support to companies in their transition towards electric vehicles.
Wolff S., Madlener R. (2018). Driven by Change: Commercial Drivers’ Acceptance and Perceived Efficiency of Using Light-Duty Electric Vehicles in Germany, FCN Working Paper No. 11/2018, Institute for Future Energy Consumer Needs and Behavior, RWTH Aachen University, August.
Esteve Soldado J.F., Wolff S., Madlener R. (2015). Environmental Impact of Electrifying Postal Delivery Fleets in Inner-City Districts: A Life-Cycle Assessment of the StreetScooter, FCN Working Paper No. 18/2015, Institute for Future Energy Consumer Needs and Behavior, RWTH Aachen University, November.
Supervised student research
Esteve Soldado J.F. (2015). Environmental Impact of Electrifying Postal Delivery Fleets in Inner-City Districts: A Life-Cycle Assessment of the StreetScooter. Master thesis, Chair of Energy Economics and Management, Faculty of Business and Economics, RWTH Aachen University.
Overkott M. (2013). Grid Integration and Charging-Strategies for Commercially Used Electric Vehicles: A Multi-Criteria Analysis. Student thesis, Chair of Energy Economics and Management, Faculty of Business and Economics, RWTH Aachen University.