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22.06.2011

Presentation of the first of twelve Trolleybuses for Riad, Saudi Arabia

Picture by J. Lehmann

“Germany is talking about e-mobility - Saudi Arabia is doing it", says Peter Hanz from the Stadtwerke Solingen GmbH (SWS) when opening the press conference of VISEON for the presentation of the first Trolleybus for Riad, Saudi Arabia. The buses including a VIP/royal edition will be produced until September 2011.

A new design for the trolleybus should be developed, more similar to a light rail car, than an ordinary bus; just with tires and energy supply via overhead catenary and poles. No debates about alternatives were occurring: In contradiction to many German cities in Riad the overhead catenary system poses no problem within the modern architecture of the surrounding buildings.

The labelling of the vehicle is LT20, at which "L" means "low floor" and "T" "trolley", the last two numerals denominate the approximately length of the bus. In future, 12 m single trolley, 18 and 18.75 m articulated trolleybuses as well as 21.15 m four axle driven articulated trolleybus are planned to be offered, also.

Special attention is laid on the air condition. Outside temperature in Riad is often more than 50 ° Celsius; hence a high-performance technology for cooling down has to be developed. For this reason two electrical driven air condition units of the supplier Sütrak (type AC 136 III) are foreseen with a cooling performance of 2 x 33 kW. The cooled air is following a flat channel under the roof and leaks out of rips against the windows into the passenger area on the whole length of the bus. In the area of the articulated joint lateral air channels are located in order to let the cooled air leak out in rips 2 meters about surface in the direction of the articulated joint. In order to prevent heating up the vehicle at stations if the doors are open, they are equipped with a curtain of down drifting cool air, which prevents the warm outside air to flow into the car. The drivers compartment is air conditioned separately by a front box air condition with cooling performance of 7 kW.

The new trolleybus has a capacity of 128 passengers in total, 44 seats are available. Behind the rear door a compartment dedicated to woman is located. With a barrier band this area can be separated from the front part of the bus.

The opening of the trolleybus system in Riad is planned by end of this year.

J. Lehmann - 13.06.11, TrolleyMotion, more information (only in German) is available here