Adjustments of public transit operations planning process for the use of electric buses

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, mode - bus, technology - alternative fuels, operations - scheduling, planning - network design, planning - route design


Charging technologies, electric buses, optimal route design, optimal scheduling; transit operations planning process


This work investigates and discusses how the introduction of electric buses (EB), both battery and plug-in hybrid EB, will and should change the operations planning of a public transit system. It is shown that some changes are required in the design of a transit route network, and in the timetabling and vehicle scheduling processes. Other changes are not required, but are advisable, using this opportunity upon the introduction of EB. The work covers the main characteristics of different types of EB with a short description, including the most popular charging technologies, and it presents the generally accepted transit operations planning process. Likewise, it describes and analytically formulates new challenges that arise when introducing EB. The outcome of the analyses shows that multiple new considerations must take place. It is also shown that the different charging techniques will influence the operations planning process in different ways and to a varying extent. With overnight, quick and continuous charging, the main challenges are in the network route design step, given the possibility of altering the existing network of routes, with efficient and optimal changes of the timetabling and vehicle scheduling components. An illustrative example, based on four bus lines in Norrköping, Sweden, is formulized and introduced using three problem instances of 48, 82, and 116 bus trips. The main results exhibit the minimum number of vehicles required using different scenarios of charging stations.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Taylor&Francis, copyright remains with them.