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ABB Powertrains for Sustainable Transport

The electrification of industrial vehicles, transportation and marine vessels has a critical role in the fight against climate change because fossil-fuel-powered vehicles that transport people, goods and raw materials account for approximately 25 percent of the world’s energy consumption and about the 30 percent of global carbon-dioxide emissions.

Learn more about the industries where ABB is using innovative solutions and deep industry knowledge to deliver a wide range of products and solutions in sustainable transport. The product portfolio includes motors, inventers, mobile controllers and energy storage systems, along with charging technologies, for mining, construction, material handling, eBus, marine, and rail.

Mining
Construction
Material Handling
E-Bus
Marine
Rail

Mining Vehicles & Machines

The mining industry has already recognised its role in making the industry more energy efficient and sustainable through setting goals and taking actions to meet carbon emissions targets. In part, this is being led by the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM) that has committed to achieving the goal of net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050 or sooner.

To help the mining industry achieve this goal, ABB is working in partnership with OEMs and System Integrators, using its experience from innovating in sustainable transportation solutions since the late 19th century, to provide complete electric powertrains for heavy working vehicles and machinery in both underground and surface mining.

Impact

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Lowering emissions


If every truck, in every mine were electrified, every day we could remove 198,000 tons of CO₂ from the air we breath
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Protecting the workforce


Vehicles free of emissions reduce the need for underground ventilation, therefore reducing the impact associated with toxic air on both the workforce and operating costs.

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Improved capacity and efficiency of the mine

It is estimated that by 2030 the total cost of ownership for a battery electric vehicle will be 20% lower than existing diesel trucks thanks to 20-30% lower maintenance costs and 40-60% lower fuel costs.

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Net-Zero commitments


Diesel powered heavy vehicles represent a significant proportion of the greenhouse gas emissions from the industry. By switching to electric, the total emissions can be reduced, helping mine operators move more quickly to becoming net-zero and meeting their ESG commitments. 

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Construction Vehicles & Machines


The global construction industry still mainly uses diesel-powered construction vehicles such as excavators, cranes and dozers that are estimated to collectively emit around 400 Mt of CO₂ per year. That amount accounts for approximately 1.1% of global CO₂ emissions. Of these construction vehicles, excavators over 10-tonnes in weight are responsible for close to a staggering 46% of those emissions.

In addition to CO₂ emissions, diesel-powered vehicles also emit other harmful gasses and particulates that are harmful to the populations where these vehicles operate.

It is not just carbon emissions and harmful gases that are particularly challenging for the construction industry. Increasing governmental regulations, noisy work environments in urban areas, low energy efficiency, and wasted heat are proving to be mounting obstacles for owners & operators.

ABB has been a pioneer in developing electric powertrains for construction vehicles to overcome many of these challenges.

Impact

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Reduced emissions

With many large construction sites based in cities and built-up areas, reducing the overall emissions will help clean the air and improve the safety and health of residents as well as the environment in which the construction is taking place.

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Reduced costs

The cost of fuel is increasing. By switching away from diesel powered vehicles, the cost savings could be significant. In addition, electric powered vehicles have less mechanical wear and tear and less moving parts therefore the service and maintenance costs are reduced.

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Safer working environments

By moving away from diesel powered vehicles to electric powered, the noise on site will be dramatically reduced as will the pollutants in the vicinity – not only CO2 but also nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and particulate matter.

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Higher efficiency and lower maintenance

Due to their high efficiency and fewer moving parts, electricity-powered construction vehicles and machines have a lower operating cost compared to diesel vehicles. Maintenance is generally lower for electric vehicles.

Products

Material Handling Vehicles


Like many industries, vehicles used in material handling such as reach stackers and forklifts, emit a significant amount of carbon dioxide (CO₂) in their daily operations. This is particularly problematic at industries with 24h hour operation.  

There is an urgent need to reduce the impact on our planet by significantly reducing annual CO₂ emissions. This urgency is particularly high in ports that are estimated to increase emissions fourfold by 2050.

The ongoing price and supply volatility of fuel is adding another challenge for operators, so it is critically important for companies in materials handling to transition to a sustainable transport approach today.

To help the material handling industry achieve their sustainability goals, ABB is working in partnership with OEMs and System Integrators, using its experience from innovating in sustainable transportation solutions since the late 19th century, to provide complete electric powertrains for industrial working vehicles and machinery.

Impact

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Reduced emissions

By electrifying and automating materials handling vehicles we can start to reduce the 18 million tonnes annually of CO₂ emissions, as well as other harmful pollutants caused by the marine industry in port.

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Reduced maintenance and greater efficiency

By transitioning to electric-powered vehicles for materials handling, we can reduce the servicing and maintenance compared with diesel-powered vehicles. This means increased operational capacity and reduced downtime.

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Healthier working environments and cleaner ports

Reducing the amount of CO₂ and other gases means cleaner environments for port workers, along with cleaner cities for those ports located nearer city centers.

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Higher efficiency and lower maintenance

Due to their high efficiency and fewer moving parts, electricity-powered material handling vehicles have a lower operating cost compared to diesel vehicles. Maintenance is generally lower for electric vehicles.

Products

eBus

Electric buses have been a common sight on the roads of cities across the world for a few years now. However, with road transport alone accounting for 10% of global CO₂ emissions, and road transport emissions rising faster than those of any other sector (according to the UN Climate Change Conference COP26 conference) there is an urgent need increase the pace of transitioning to better options including electric buses.

Electric buses are significantly more energy efficient and sustainable than conventional diesel-powered vehicles. The use of electricity for power instead of diesel means they are much more efficient and productive when operating up to 18 hours/day by sourcing energy from a combination of overhead wires (catenaries) and/or battery power.

It is clear that emission-free public transportation improves local air quality and reduces noise pollution. Transitioning to an electric vehicle fleet requires smart technologies that are quickly deployable and have lower operational costs than traditional bus systems.

Impact

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Higher efficiency and lower maintenance

Due to their high efficiency and fewer moving parts, electric buses have a lower operating cost compared to diesel buses. Maintenance is generally lower for electric buses.

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Improved air quality

Electric buses can reduce air pollution, particularly in large cities. According to Public Health England, there are 28,000 to 36,000 deaths per year which are caused by air pollution.

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Reduced energy costs

It is about 2.5 times cheaper to power vehicles with electricity rather than diesel. Electricity prices are generally much more stable than gasoline or diesel prices.

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Quieter operations

Electric buses have a positive impact on the community offering a quiet, smooth ride will improve the sentiment among passengers. The lack of an engine results in reduced noise pollution and the smell of fumes.

Products

Marine Vessels

Marine vessels are a significant source of greenhouse gas emissions, but more small-to-medium vessels such as tugs, local ferries and fishing boats are increasingly converting to electrical power.

Electrification of the powertrain, meaning replacing many of the conventional propulsion components with electric motors, inverters, mobile controllers and an energy storage system, increases efficiency for operators by using less fossil fuels for power.

With an ABB electric powertrain, the task of building small-to-medium vessels like tugs and tourist ferries becomes easier as the mobile drive and motor are designed to be compact and work in harsh conditions. As such they don't need electrical rooms or cabinets but can be installed in small spaces like in catamaran fins or on bulkheads.

The operation profile of these ships provides effective charging opportunities, which makes fully electric ships a viable solution, even with current battery technology. An additional benefit is that these kind of vessels commonly operate in areas where emissions and noise bring challenges as they operate near cities or nature reserves.

Impact

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Increasing efficiency for operators

Making shipping more efficient and greener not only makes sense for environmental and health benefits, but also cost. Currently, fuel can account for up to 60% of a vessel’s operating costs, so reducing the use of fuel will save money.

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Healthier working environments and cleaner ports

Over half of all maritime emissions come from ships whilst they are berthed in ports, by switching to electric solutions these emissions can be reduced and removed. This means cleaner environments for port workers and cleaner cities for those city ports.

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Reduced emissions

By providing the capabilities to retrofit and fit from new electric propulsion systems, we are offering the potential to dramatically reduce the emissions. Electric propulsion systems are available across the marine segment from merchant to passenger meaning the overall potential emissions reduction is sizable.

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Higher efficiency and lower maintenance

Due to their high efficiency and fewer moving parts, electricity-powered marine vessels have a lower operating cost compared to diesel vessels. Maintenance is generally lower for electric marine vessels.

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Rail

ABB holds a complete and flexible traction portfolio that allows configuration of the perfect solution for train operators – regardless of train type, power range or geographical location. We offer highly integrated traction systems including traction transformers, traction converters, traction motors, traction alternator, energy storage systems and other components.

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