Why electric road systems?

One important factor in the development of the roads of the future is the requirement for reduced CO2 emissions, especially from heavy goods vehicles (HGV). According to consultancy firm WSP, it could be possible for two thirds of HGV transport activities in Sweden to take place on electric road systems by 2030.

Sweden is a role model in this area. It was back in 2016 that the world’s very first electric section of road for HGVs was created, on the E16 north of Stockholm. A few years later there was a corresponding initiative in Germany.

The focus is on HGVs. This is because the batteries used in private cars do not have sufficient capacity for use in vehicles that have to drive long distances with a heavy load. An electric road system provides even the heaviest vehicles with sufficient power, which is supplemented by standard batteries when the vehicle leaves the road to deliver its load. For Swedish conditions, the Swedish Transport Administration believes that it will be profitable to build electric road systems covering 2-3,000 km of the national road network.

Such a transition requires significant investments in new, powerful electricity grids that can supply power to the major motorways. Another challenge is the fact that a process of expansion is under way across Europe, which in turn requires an international standard defining how electrically powered vehicles are to be charged while driving. Only then can it be possible to transport goods using HGVs from Malaga in the south all the way to North Cape in Norway, without the need to re-fuel.

Noted

Stop and full speed ahead

On 27 November 2020, after 46 days and 8,000 activities with no accidents and not one single person being infected with COVID-19, a turnaround was completed at the Nynas refinery in Harburg.

Projects

Porsgrunn, Norway

The global Norwegian industrial group Yara International is the first in the world to use a totally electric container ship in commercial operation. To make the transition from land to sea transport, a new quay facility is being built.

Talking point

Road maintenance, a European challenge

The lack of funding for road maintenance is a growing problem in Europe. Wide-ranging initiatives are now required in order to avoid further deterioration.

Projects

Tough demands on durability

To withstand the loads from heavy vehicles and containers,Piteå Port & Hub in Northern Sweden opted for a polymer modified binder for paving the most heavily used parts of the new port area.

Noted

All the key players are working together to achieve the best possible result.

Katri Eskola, Specialist Road Maintenance Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency

Talking point: The COVID-19 pandemic


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