TORONTO — The Canadian Urban Transit Research and Innovation Consortium (CUTRIC), a transportation technology development organization, is partnering with seven institutions to research battery electric and fuel cell electric buses.
OCAD University, Ontario Tech University, Queen’s University, the University of Windsor, Centennial College, York University and Canadian Nuclear Labs are all members of the National Academic Committee on Zero-Emissions Buses (NAC-ZEB).
CUTRIC says it and its members are contributing a total of $4.2 million in funding over three years with an additional $551,000 through the federally supported Mitacs Accelerate and Elevate programs to fund the initiative.
CUTRIC supports research into electric and hydrogen bus simulation and modelling tools and powertrain optimization to improve bus motors, batteries and hydrogen fuel cell stacks. The organization also supports cybersecurity research.
“This research will move Canada closer to achieving the goal of electrifying 5,000 buses across the country,” said Josipa Petrunic, executive director and CEO of CUTRIC, in a prepared statement. “Our consortium provides the data-driven insights required by municipal, provincial and federal governments to implement electric bus fleets in a way that saves tax dollars over the long-term and improves transit to make it the primary choice for mobility for Canadians in the future. Our work will remove the barriers of uncertainty and high risk associated with the adoption of electrified propulsion technologies.”
CUTRIC says the work conducted through its predictive analytics has already supported the electrification of routes in Vancouver, Brampton, Ont., and Toronto’s York Region and supported the feasibility assessment of the full fleet electrification of the Toronto Transit Corporation, Canada’s largest transit system.
According to CUTRIC, this announcement builds on approximately $16 million in federal funding already awarded to the City of Brampton, TransLink, York Region Transit and Newmarket-Tay Power Distribution Ltd. through Natural Resources Canada to help launch the Pan-Canadian Electric Bus Demonstration & Integration Trial — a program in partnership with Canadian electric bus manufacturers New Flyer Industries and Nova Bus along with international charging systems partners ABB Group and Siemens.