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International Research Collaboration on Electric Road Systems II (CollERS2)

The CollERS2 project is a collaboration between Germany, France and Sweden, which provides a platform for exchange of knowledge in the field of electrification of heavy road transport, with a focus on Electric Road Systems (ERS). The overall aim of the project is to increase the common knowledge about ERS and complementary non-ERS technologies, and how these alternatives can contribute to a technology shift that leads to reduced emissions from heavy road transport. Also, possible long-term strategies for a successful implementation of cross-border ERS in Europe are discussed.

This is partly done by compile results from ongoing field trials in Germany and Sweden on the use of ERS for the decarbonisation of road-based heavy goods transport and the associated accompanying research. Lessons learned from these are to be presented and shared with European partners in a European context towards the joint development of long-term strategies for the cross-border implementation of the systems. In addition, each country conducts its own investigations and studies on various related topics, that are shared within the network to increase the knowledge in the area. The project builds on the innovation partnership between Germany and Sweden that has been in place since 2017. In addition, the goal is to integrate other European partners into the ERS discussion during the course of the project.

The technical focus of the partners from Germany is on investigating the potential of overhead lines for ERS, as these are already undergoing practical testing in public spaces in the three field trials in Hesse, Schleswig-Holstein and Baden-Württemberg. In addition, the potentials of conductor rails and inductive technologies will be investigated. The potential of ERS will also be compared to other zero-emission approaches in road freight transport, such as the use of fuel cells or purely battery-electric vehicles with a stationary charging infrastructure, and their synergies will be highlighted. In addition to the technology assessment, regulatory and economic aspects as well as aspects of social acceptance will also be taken into account.

The technology assessment of the partners from Sweden includes overhead lines, conductive rails, and inductive concepts, which all are being or have been demonstrated on public roads in Sweden. The investigations are primarily focused on technology maturity and ERS’s impact on the road facility, e.g., operation & maintenance, traffic management systems etc. As addition, Swedish prerequisites for the introduction of ERS and non-ERS alternatives, primarily Battery Electric Trucks (BET) and Fuel Cell Electric Trucks (FCET), are highlighted in relation to each other. Similar to the project plan of the German partners, regulatory and economic aspects are also taken into account in the Swedish projects.

As one result of the project, recommendations for action will be developed for a European expansion of ERS technologies. The starting point for this is a future European ERS network along major TEN-T corridors.

Besides continuous and frequent exchange of knowledge in the field of electrification of heavy road transport (internal), a total of four discussion papers will be published and shared with the public (external). Each paper will have a focus area as follows:

Discussion paper 1 – Technology assessment

Discussion paper 2 – Regulatory issues

Discussion paper 3 – Societal issues

Discussion paper 4 - International expansion strategy