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Methods for Establishing E-Bus Operations Monitoring Systems

In this section we will review the monitoring systems for bus operations.
Close up of a driver of an E-Bus in Cape Town, South Africa.

In this article, we will have a look at the methods they have implemented in China and the requirements for data collection on E-Buses. They call it a New Energy Vehicle Application Improvement Notification. Depending on their monitoring needs, we will closely examine what these new energy vehicles need to collect.

China has a significant advantage in collecting E-Bus data. As stated in the Notification of Improvement of Safety Monitoring in the Promotion and Application of New Energy Vehicles (MIITequip [2016] No. 377), this was issued by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology in 2016. Where it was stipulated that each Battery Electric Bus (BEB) should be equipped with data collection devices from the factory, and manufacturers are responsible for real-time data collection and regulation and information exchanges with national new energy vehicles using monitoring and monitoring platforms.

The idea is that these platforms obtain data related to the “production, sale, purchase and service” of New Energy Vehicles (NEV), which provides data support for the development of technology and scientific research on NEV, the formulation of industrial policies, the management security dynamics, and reasonable layout of the industry and financial subsidies. ​(Li, Wu, Li, & Mu, 2022)​

Achieving the construction and real-time tracking of an operational monitoring system is essential to improve and perfect the public transport companies with NEV.

Methods for Establishing E-Bus Operations Monitoring Systems

For industry administrative authorities at all levels, monitoring needs are mainly for formulating development plans, policies, and business supervision activities. Bus operators’ monitoring needs derive from the daily transport service and management systems.

It is necessary to establish a monitoring system for the E-Bus operation made up of monitoring platforms at various levels, from macro to micro, as well as platforms at the national, provincial, and municipal levels that are related to the company’s monitoring platforms of buses, and in this way satisfy the respective operational needs of monitoring.

Diagram of the monitoring levels.Click to expand. Monitoring Levels. PEM Motion (2023)

  • National Monitoring: Promotion & application, vehicle technical performance, subsidy granting basis, vehicle safety, energy consumption, emission monitoring, policing-making basis.
  • Provincial: Monitoring of promotion & application, traffic operation status, vehicle safety monitoring, subsidy granting basis.
  • Municipal: Vehicle operation status monitoring, subsidy granting basis, emergency data support, infrastructure optimization & regulation / planning-making basis.
  • Enterprise: Vehicle & location information, traffic & operation status, safety management, capacity sharing, driving behavior data, routing optimization, fault alerts.

Course mascot with the dialogue: "It is essential to know that data and information can be exchanged between platforms at various levels!" Course Mascot. PEM Motion (2023)

Examples of practices of establishing bus operation monitoring systems by local public transport companies in China

Monitoring models can vary from place to place, and there are two main categories: 1) Monitoring systems based on the vehicle manufacturer, including in Xi’an, Jinan, and Chengdu; 2) Independently self-built monitoring systems that public transport companies manage, such as those in Yinchuan, Shenyang, Zhengzhou, and Shenzhen. Shenzhen also shares data with provincial and municipal charging management platforms and monitoring platforms.

Yinchuan has built enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, driving behavior monitoring and analysis systems, video monitoring systems, and intelligent vehicle dispatch systems, which contain functions such as driver scheduling options, output, mileage statistics, and driving route displays. ​(Li, Wu, Li, & Mu, 2022)​

Shenyang has built an intelligent dispatching system, statistical passenger flow system, intelligent assisted driving active safety warning system, blind spot assisted driving system, and an alarm system to prevent dangerous driving activities.

City skyline showing buildings and the river. City Skyline. studycli.org (2021)

Zhengzhou has built a new energy vehicle monitoring and control platform, which monitors performance via terminals and uses the CAN bus (Controller Area Network). To implement real-time vehicle status monitoring, intelligent dispatching, energy consumption statistics, data analysis, fault diagnosis and automatic alerting of fault information, and mobile connection between vehicle and human, among other functions.

City skyline focusing in a bridge filled with lights. City at night. cathaypacific.com (2023)

The Shenzhen Bus Group has divided monitoring functions into four sections: operation management, safety management, charging management, and emergency management, where all the operation data is interconnected with the Municipal Commission of Transportation management platform.

Beijing Municipal New Energy Vehicle Operation Service and Management Platform screenshot.Click to expand. Beijing Municipal New Energy Vehicle Operation Service and Management Platform. mdpi.com (2022)

In the next picture, another example of a management platform is presented.

Guangdong Province Dynamic Monitoring Platform for New Energy VehiclesClick to expand. Guangdong Province Dynamic Monitoring Platform for New Energy Vehicles. qz.com (2022)

Conclusion

Public transportation companies can collect data from vehicles and charging stations to address various monitoring needs and issues. The data collected includes information on basic vehicle standards, video monitoring, failure alerts, first departure, last arrivals, passenger flows, and security incidents, among other related needs.

We will observe later how other cities in China handle their strategies for ensuring safe operations.

​​References

​- Li, C., Wu, Z., Li, X., & Mu, K. (2022)* Research on Technical System of Battery Electric Buses in China.* Retrieved from: Link

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