TonyWilliams wrote:In other words, it's complete hypocrisy to suggest that because there is not an adequate electric supply, that hydrogen somehow the answer over electric vehicles.
But clearly H2 FCVs are the only solution to practically every transportation application given that BEVs are only capable of travelling short distances at low speeds on flat roads in warm climates.
But I'm sure GRA will, as is usual, be here soon to claim that he meant to imply nothing of the sort when he wrote this:
GRA wrote:I'd think this is a good match for BEV buses, given the slow speeds, single flat route and limited distance covered, as well as the generally warm temps in the months the shuttles are operating.
He comes here daily to promote H2 but expects us to accept his insistence that he is promoting BEVs also when his "positive" statements are back-handed compliments like this one.
As Tony said, when all is said and done, there will be very few, if any, applications left over for H2 FCV buses once BEVs have taken all the rest.
And here I am, repeating nonsense as usual. As it happens, having done some finer calcs, I now think BEV buses might
be suitable for the winter shuttle runs from the Valley to Badger Pass, but still have my doubts about their efficacy for the Tioga Road and Glacier Pt. shuttles, given the usage patterns and lack of electric infrastructure.
Here's the details, for anyone who's interested in them. Assuming they haven't changed anything signficantly, the winter bus from the Valley to Badger arrives there from the Valley at 9:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. each day, and leaves Badger to return at 2:00 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. You sign up beforehand, so they know how many buses to schedule at each time. It's 23 miles and 3,400' of elevation change each way, and each bus makes 1 1/2 round trips in the morning (Valley-Badger-Valley-Badger), sits at Badger until 2:00 p.m., then does another 1.5 round trips in the afternoon (Badger-Valley-Badger-Valley), and then overnights in the Valley. So, the day is divided into two periods each of 69 miles, which includes 8,800 feet of climb and 3,400' of descent in the morning, and 8,800' of descent/3,400 feet of climb in the afternoon. The bus will require heating/defrost, and it must be able to make the trip using chains.
If the bus has enough range to do all 138 miles on a single charge in the above conditions, charging overnight in the Valley where the infrastructure can support it, great. But if it can't do so, it would need to charge at Badger during the 2.5 hour period it parks there, and the question then becomes is there enough excess electrical capacity at Badger to provide enough charge for the afternoon in that period (assuming that installing one or more charge points issn't too much hassle)? If not, is the Park Service likely to be willing to do an infrastructure upgrade to allow it (IME, highly unlikely).
In that case, an FCEV may be the better ZEV choice. I suspect that the Park Service might opt for an FCEV over a BEV if the BEV needed to use a fuel-fired heater to have adequate range, as they're more likely to opt for a full ZEV solution than a purely commercial calculation might suggest, assuming that the TCO is reasonably close.
The usage situation of the Glacier Pt. and especially the Tioga Road shuttles is very different from this. They use smaller buses similar to this: http://midamericacoach.com/cms/wp-conte ... hot-SM.jpg
, not the full size ones that are used on the Valley-Badger shuttle. There's very limited infrastructure, and the buses run continuously from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Tioga Road. (for comparison, the Glacier Pt. shuttle runs every 20 minutes from 10:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.). The distance is 11.5 miles each way, with about a 500 foot gain or loss, 12 scheduled and potentially some unscheduled stops (you can ask to be let off or flag them down anywhere along the corridor) and 30 minute headways which require a minimum of two buses to service it, not counting the twice daily runs from Tuolumne Meadows Lodge to Tioga Pass (7.3 miles/1,345 feet one way) and back, which require another. So each regular shuttle bus makes 12 round trip runs, or 12*23 = 256 miles daily, with 6,000' elevation gain/loss. Heat's only needed on the early morning runs, and maybe late afternoon runs in fall, but there's simply no time to stop to charge between runs given the existing infrastructure and short dwell times. I don't see current BEV buses having the range to manage this run, but an FCEV could, possibly with a fueling stop mid-day.
So, Reg, my doubts about the suitability of BEV buses on some routes are based on practical concerns, not due to favoring one tech over the other. If both are suitable in the particular situation, BEVs remain my first choice, as they're the most energy-efficient. Anywhere that BEV buses can do the job at the lowest TCO, they should be used, given the specific situation and allowing for any not strictly commercial requirements/desires of the Park Service, which has the final say. If BEVs were the obvious best solution for the job there would be no need to do a study. Admittedly, government agencies often do them in lieu of action - last night I was browsing through some old visitor guides from various National Parks I've visited, and came across the one from the last time I was in Zion (fall '92). It mentioned that the issue of auto congestion in Zion Canyon was becoming critical, that implementing a shuttle system had first been proposed and studied in the early '80s and it was hoped to start one 'soon', if they could find the money. They must have done so sometime between then and now, but the fact that it took so long when it was an obvious need isn't really surprising to me; even assuming the park's fully behind it as was the case there, they still have to get it funded.