Tag Archive: DLR

  1. DLR-Study: can shared E-scooters reduce CO2 emissions by substituting car trips in Germany?

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    • E-scooters’ car-trip substitution potential for e-scooters estimated on basis of based on German mobility data.
    • 13 % of daily car trips or 2 % of vehicle-kilometers traveled suitable for replacement.
    • Calculation of daily potential greenhouse gas reduction through by switching to e-scooters.
    • Maximum savings of 1.2% of transportation GHG achievable if replacing gasoline cars.
    • Savings highly dependent on use case; potentially negative for BEV-replacement potentially negative.


    This DLR-paper explores which trips currently made in Germany by personal motorized transportation could be replaced by e-scooters and what effect this would have on greenhouse gas emissions. This potential for substitution is estimated on the basis of data from the national household travel survey in Germany. The DLR-analysis shows that 13% of the daily car trips, corresponding to 2% of the car kilometers in Germany, are suitable for replacement. Based on these results, the researchers show that saving potentials of greenhouse gas emissions are heavily dependent on the general conditions of the specific use case (e.g. e-scooter lifetime) and the type of vehicle replaced. At best, a saving potential of about 5.8 kt of CO2eq per day could be achieved when trips with conventional cars are replaced by e-scooter driving. However, if battery electric cars are replaced, an increase in emissions may even occur under certain conditions.

    The full study is here: Can shared E-scooters reduce CO2 emissions by substituting car trips in Germany? – ScienceDirect

    Photo by Christina Spinnen on Unsplash

  2. 44% = 57 million tonnes CO2 eq per year

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    Light Electric Vehicles (LEVs) are key to reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) in the fight against climate change. That is the conclusion of the very first study on how the use of LEVs can contribute to Climate Protection. The report, “The Potential of Light Electric Vehicles for Climate Protection Through Substitution for Passenger Car Trips – Germany as a case Study,” by the authoritative German Aerospace Center (DLR), was presented on March 24 at the conference: The Future is Electric and Light!, held in Brussels and on-line, attended by policymakers at EU, city and local level and by the scientific community.

    The DLR-study models a scenario for Germany in 2030 in which a major modal shift, away from full-sized cars to LEVs, has taken place. For the model, DLR has used 9 different LEV-types, i.e. e-scooter, e-cycle, e-cycle+ (allowing for cargo), speed pedelec, moped, motorcycle, microcars 45, 90 and 125 km/h. The analysis was done with vehicles available on the market, announced for sale in 2022 or tested in pilot projects. For the model, DLR used statistical data from the German 2017-survey “Mobilität in Deutschland“.

    For each substitutable car trip, DLR chose the lightest LEV that could replace the car, considering a variety of factors such as luggage, passengers, trip length etc.  Of all car trips in the survey, 97% were less than 100 km, with 80% under 20 km! The calculation of the overall CO2eq emission saving per trip was aggregated for all trips and scaled up to a period of one year for Germany. With this model, DLR found the following.

    • 76%, which is more than ¾ of all car trips could be substituted by LEV-trips;
    • 50% of all car kilometres could be substituted by LEV kilometres;
    • Each substituted trip would avoid on average 88% of GHG emissions from the substituted vehicle;
    • That substitution would result in a reduction of 57 million tonnes of CO2eq per year;
    • In absolute terms, the substitution would save 44% of GHG emissions;
    • Vehicle battery size and capacity are the decisive factors for overall GHG emissions from electric vehicles.

    The study alos found that LEVs offer considerable advantages beyond reducing emissions such as improving public health through cleaner air, less noise and improved road safety as well as improving overall quality of life.

    The DLR-study was discussed by two panels at The Future is Light and Electric! event, which featured an impressive line-up. MEP Marian-Jean Marinescu was one of the participants in the political discussion in the morning. He is the EPP coordinator in TRAN and also a substitute on ENVI and ITRE. He was joined by 2 Commission representatives: Zlatko Kregar, Policy Officer at the Unit Sustainable and Intelligent Transport, DG Move and Michael Kyriakopoulos, Senior Expert Low Emission Future Industries, DG Research and Innovation. Lucas Demuelenaere represented Alain Maron, the Brussels Minister of Climate, Energy and Environment.

    The scientific panel in the afternoon included a figure head of LEV-research. Chris Cherry is Professor at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Tennessee. He has done a great deal of research into and published on light electric vehicles. He stated: “Simply switching fossil-powered cars with electric cars will not do enough, fast enough, to reach our climate targets. This report, using real-world behaviour data, shows that LEVs can be an important and readily available way to fast-track climate mitigating technology into the transportation sector for many of society’s trips, which can result in large short-term reductions in emissions.”

    “With the energy it takes to go and get a loaf of bread from the bakery in an electric car, one can go to the same bakery 100 times in a light, electric vehicle,” said Jan Cappelle, Associate Professor, Faculty of Engineering Technology, KU Leuven, commenting on the findings. Laura Po, Associate Professor, “Enzo Ferrari” Engineering Department, UNIMORE, Modena, Italy, speaking at the event welcomed the research as “an exemplar study conducted in Germany that should be reproduced by all other member states. What we need now is customer acceptance and political regulation.” she added.

    “Switching our car system to electric cannot reduce carbon emissions fast enough and does not make mobility more just – research and policy need to focus on micromobility and other light electric vehicles and their role in creating more sustainable and just mobility futures, not just in the West, but also globally. The LEV report provides important insights for this necessary transition,” said Dr Frauke Behrendt, Associate Professor in Transitions to Sustainable Mobility at the Technology, Innovation and Society Group at the Eindhoven University of Technology, Eindhoven, Germany.

    Outside the event venue, just around the corner of the European Parliament, a number of vehicles, among which the Microlino, the eFlow and Podbike, were shown to the participants and the press. Furthermore, Commission officials and MEPs were invited to take a look at the vehicles and to take a short test ride during the day.

    The Future is Electric and Light! is the start of long-term advocacy initiative by LEVA-EU to encourage and further scientific research into LEVs and their integration in EU policies such as the Green Deal, Fit for 55 and the New Urban Mobility Framework.

    said Prof. Christopher Cherry, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Tennessee, lead of the LEVER research consortium of multiple relevant projects.

    “The study shows that the European Union is making a mistake in ignoring light, electric vehicles. Sustainable mobility and mitigating climate change cannot be achieved by electrifying vehicles only. The vehicles also need to become much lighter,” said Annick Roetynck, Manager of LEVA-EU, the European trade-association for Light Electric Vehicle (LEV) businesses who commissioned the research.

    Legal bottlenecks, particularly in technical legislation are very seriously hampering the technological and market development of LEVs. The results of the DLR-study should convince the Commission to prioritise those issues,” she added.

    Outside the Renaissance, a number of vehicles, among which the eFlow speed pedelec, the Microlino microcar and the Podbike, were shown to the participants and the press. Furthermore, Commission officials and MEPs were invited to take a look at the vehicles and to take a short test ride during the day.

    The Future is Electric and Light! is the start of long-term advocacy initiative by LEVA-EU to encourage and further scientific research into LEVs and their integration in EU policies such as the Green Deal, Fit for 55 and the New Urban Mobility Framework.

    LEVA-EU enjoys the support of FairlybikeMicrolinoPodbike and Superpedestrian for both the DLR-report and the long-term initiative. Further sponsoring is still welcome. Please contact Eddie Eccleston, eddie@leva-eu.com, tel. +32 472 32 9770.

  3. German Aerospace Center (DLR) calls for Papers for Book on Small Electric Vehicles

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    Against the background of the International Hybrid and Electric Vehicles Technology Collaboration Programme (IEA-HEV), the German Aerospace Center is pleased to invite paper proposals for an edited book on small electric vehicles (SEV). Authors from science, industry, public institutions and similar are welcome to submit proposals. The book aims for a comprehensive international view on chances and obstacles for small electric vehicles as well as new research and developments in the area.

    With a growing number of electric vehicles worldwide, the EV stock of passenger cars reached 5.1 million in 2018 with battery electric vehicles (BEV) holding 64 % (IEA 2018). Especially the sales numbers and models available on the market of larger vehicles, i.e. large cars, SUVs or pick-ups, grew significantly in the past years. However, in general they use more energy than small and light vehicles and become less efficient. Besides the benefits that come with the deployment of BEVs, SEVs furthermore require less critical raw materials for the production of batteries and overall emit less greenhouse gases (GHG) than large electric vehicles or vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICE). SEVs are an alternative especially in urban areas. Due to their small size they occupy less space and could therefore help in the development of attractive city centres. In this connection, it is important to consider which means of transport are substituted.

    While China has a growing number of SEVs with 50 million electric three-wheelers and an estimated 5 million low speed electric vehicles (LSEV) other countries show by far smaller numbers. Especially considering world markets such as the United States and Europe, SEVs have only limited success. Different rules for homologation complicate a comparison of world markets and the introduction of vehicle models into new markets.

    The edited book should give a comprehensive overview of these types of vehicles with an international scope. The present status of SEV technologies, the market situation and main hindering factors for market success as well as options to attain a higher market share including new mobility concepts will be highlighted.

    Topics of interest
    The term small electric vehicle comprises three and four wheel locally emission free vehicles. Depending on the regional background they are classified differently, e.g. as low- and medium-speed vehicles, low-speed electric vehicle or kei cars. According to EU regulation (No. 168/2013) they belong to one of the L-categories L2e, L5e-L7e. Additionally vehicles of categories M1 or N1 which do not exceed 3.5 m, a maximum drive power of 55 kW and an unladen weight of up to 1,200 kg are in the scope. Areas of interest for this book include, but are not limited to, the following topics:

     Vehicle concepts and technologies
     Homologation and regulations
     International markets
     Mobility concepts
     Infrastructure for SEV (e.g. road infrastructure or charging)
     Effect on traffic and urban development
     Research projects

    Guide for authors
    1. Authors are invited to submit an abstract (3,000-5,000 characters, spaces included) in English, stating which questions they want to address in their contributions. The contribution must also include a short CV of no more than 350 characters (including spaces) and the affiliation. It should be sent in an electronic format (PDF file) to Amelie.Ewert@dlr.de. The deadline to submit abstracts is 31.10.2019.
    2. The editorial board will inform authors of the pre-selection results by 30.11.2019.
    3. The authors of the pre-selected proposals should send their articles (approx. 8 pages) to the review’s editorial department no later than 31.04.2020. They will be evaluated by the editorial board in line with its usual standards.

    Editorial Board
    Dr. Stephan Schmid. German Aerospace Center (DLR)
    Amelie Ewert. German Aerospace Center (DLR)
    Mascha Brost. German Aerospace Center (DLR)
    Luc Vinckx. Elephant Consult
    Dr. Huw Davies. Coventry University

    For enquiries, please contact: Amelie.Ewert@dlr.de.

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