The bus named Tindo, the Kaurna Aboriginal word for ‘sun’ is the newest addition to the Adelaide City Council’s Adelaide Connector Bus service, a free service for the people of Adelaide. The service which originates at the Central Bus Station makes a roundabout route through the city powered entirely on solar energy.
BP Solar provided the photovoltaic (solar) panels which are located at the Central Bus Station. These panels absorb and convert light energy from the sun to form electricity which is then used to charge the bus. While the vehicle itself doesn’t have any solar panels, there is a kinetic energy recovery system (KERS) which saves about 30% of the stored energy during braking.
The bus is air-conditioned and can carry up to 40 passengers, with 25 standard seats, 2 seats especially designed for disabled passengers and room for 13 standing passengers. The best part about it is that they all ride for free, and there is no limit on who can use the bus.
Summing all this up, we get a bus that is quiet, environmentally friendly, and can travel about 200 km per charge. Since its launch in February of this year, it has driven about 55,000 kilometers and has saved the Council over 14,000 litres of diesel, thus cutting back on over 70,000 kg of CO2-e in its first year.