The first of the 14 brand new buses for the BROOKESbus network are being delivered, and were presented to senior Oxford Brookes University directors and the media on Tuesday the 2nd September 2014, by Operations Director Phil Southall.
The buses are the very first of a new design by Alexander Dennis (who built the bodies for the 200-series Scanias). They are the first “Euro 6” buses for service in Oxford, and also the first roll-out of the Gyrodrive hybrid power system. All of this means that the power used and the exhaust emissions are as good as the electric hybrids in the fleet (both types in the 300 series) but the add-on cost is much lower.
The buses themselves are in the bright, eye-catching livery designed by the university, and the interiors too were specified as part of the contract. They will certainly be noticed on the streets of Oxford!
Gyrodrive – What is it and what does it do?
This innovative system was actually developed in Oxfordshire by the Williams Formula 1 team. It is a Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS). When the bus brakes, normally the energy is lost as heat; this system “harvests” that energy and stores it in a flywheel, which runs at up to 36,000 rpm. When the driver accelerates, the system works in reverse, feeding energy into the traction motor. All of this reduces the work done by the engine, and fuel use is reduced by up to 25%. Simple!