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Research for sustainable cities

What new opportunities arise when the public transport in a city is electrified? Can a city be built and experienced differently when noise and exhaust fumes disappear?

Researchers from Chalmers are running several projects under the framework of ElectriCity that address these questions. Noise, the environment, safety, technology, behaviour and sustainability are some of the issues in focus. The new 55 bus line that runs between Chalmers' two campuses in Gothenburg, Lindholmen and Johanneberg, will be used as a research arena. Vehicles, bus stops and passenger information along the line form an integrated and comprehensive solution with unique elements that are of interest to the research. One example is the unique indoor bus stop at Teknikgatan, Lindholmen.

Examples of Chalmers' research projects that are linked to ElectriCity:

User Perspective

This project is evaluating buses and bus stops from the perspective of travellers and residents in the area.

  • Do the individuals perceive and value the unique qualities (low noise level, exhaust-free operation) that electric vehicles provide? Do they feel like the quality of public transport is improved?
  • Electrified vehicles allow public transport to move in closer to housing and workplaces. How do people react and behave when a bus is moving indoors or in other places that vehicles normally do not drive? Do people feel threatened by the buses? Are they inclined to take risks?
  • How does the design of the bus stops impact the flow of travellers getting on and off the bus? The better the flow, the shorter the time the bus needs to stay at the bus stop.

Indoor Bus Stop

This project is investigating the situations that arise when a bus is used inside a building.

  • How can an adequate climate be maintained in a building when large doors frequently are opened to let buses in and out and when the buses themselves are a source of heat or cold depending on the outdoor temperature. The project is studying how control technology can be used to control the climate and minimise energy loss. By transmitting data from the arriving bus to the indoor bus stop, the building can be made ready to receive the bus and travellers. For example, if the building receives information on how many people will soon disembark from the bus, the premises' heating can be adjusted, thus saving energy.
  • What is the relationship between the increased costs that result from an indoor bus stop and the additional value that travellers may experience?

Quiet Public Spaces

The focus of this project is the challenge of keeping noise levels low in the densified cities of the future. Noise is known to cause increased stress, decreased ability to concentrate and can cause cardiovascular disease.

  • How can quiet oases be created in the public environment? The Quiet Public Spaces project is investigating how spaces can be created in which residents can take a break from the city's bothersome background noise. The outdoor bus stop at Sven Hultins Plats is being used as the test site. Bothersome traffic noise is muffled using advanced technology, while providing waiting travellers with a pleasant sound experience.

Innovation Management

The working methods within ElectriCity are groundbreaking. Several organisations are acting together with a common focus. Together with three ElectriCity partners, Chalmers has applied for research funding to investigate how the collaboration type supports the growth of attractive innovation environments in the region.

Contacts:

Jenny Forshufvud, Chalmers, +46 31-772 41 94, jenny.forshufvud@chalmers.se