This paper presents an electrical infrastructure planning method for transit systems that operate with partially grid-connected vehicles incorporating on-board batteries. First, the state-of-the-art of electric transit systems that combine grid-connected and battery-based operation is briefly described. Second, the benefits of combining a grid connection and battery supply in Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) systems are introduced. Finally, the planning method is explained and tested in a BRT route in Medellin, Colombia, using computational simulations in combination with real operational data from electric buses that are currently operating in this transit line. Unlike other methods and approaches for Battery Electric Bus (BEB) infrastructure planning, the proposed technique is system-focused, rather than solely limited to the vehicles. The objective of the technique, from the vehicle’s side, is to assist the planner in the correct sizing of batteries and power train capacity, whereas from the system side the goal is to locate and size the route sections to be electrified. These decision variables are calculated with the objective of minimizing the installed battery and achieve minimum Medium Voltage (MV) network requirements, while meeting all technical and reliability conditions. The method proved to be useful to find a minimum feasible cost solution for partially electrifying a BRT line with In-motion Charging (IMC) technology.
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