New Bus for London to be cleanest on the planet 04 March 2011

Cummins engineers, working with manufacturer Wrightbus, say they will make the New Bus for London (NBfL – a revolutionary re-creation of the iconic Routemaster bus) one of the cleanest on the planet.

The power plant will be based on Cummins ISBe 4.5-litre engine, which already meets the EEV (enhanced environmentally friendly venhicle) ultra low emissions standard without additional exhaust particulate after-treatment.

However, Neil Pattison, Cummins automotive engine business director says the firm has developed a "unique" after-treatment system that will allow the bus "to meet the real world ultra low emissions targets needed for the project".

While NOx and particulates emissions are reduced with its Euro 5/EEV SCR (selective catalytic reduction) system, an additional diesel oxidation catalyst (DOC) is now fitted between the engine and the SCR system to reduce CO and HC emissions (carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons respectively).

The result, he says, is a carbon footprint less than half that of the majority of buses operating in London today.

"Cummins has significant experience in cleaning up London buses over the last 20 years," says Pattison. "Many of the original Routemasters were re-powered with Cummins B5.9 Euro 2 engines in the 1990's, delivering improved reliability and fuel economy with lower emissions."

"One Routemaster was fitted with an early exhaust after-treatment system in 2000, becoming the cleanest bus in London some time before the Low Emissions Zone was introduced. Also, Cummins' Euro 4 ISBe engine and SCR system was the first to be approved for the LEZ without the need for particulate filtration," he adds.

Several other buses running in London are also powered by Cummins B Series (B5.9 and ISBe), which has seen considerable adoption across the UK bus industry, with an estimated 30,000=plus engines sold since it was introduced in the mid 1980s.

Wrightbus' double decker models and its new StreetLite midibus both use Cummins, and Pattison says NBfL will build on this experience – including ensuring that Euro 6 engine technology can be retrofitted when the legislation comes into force in 2013.

Cummins ISBe 4.5-litre engine provides 185hp and is mated to a Siemens hybrid transmission. The engine drives a generator that supplies energy to a lithium-phosphate battery pack, which in turn provides electrical current for the electric drive motors, replenished by regenerative braking technology.

Brian Tinham

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