Founded in 2016, the Aluminium Revolutionary Chassis Company (ARCC) is committed to the development of a zero emission bus chassis that’s designed and built in Australia. The company intends to disrupt the country’s transport market by challenging traditional approaches to public transport, moving vehicles away from diesel engines and instead towards electric power and alternative fuels such as hydrogen.
Australia introduced LNG/CNG buses in the late 1990s in the hope they would support a cleaner source of fuel for the country’s public transport network. In the intervening years, however, diesel has maintained a competitive edge and many of the vehicles in service around Australia today remain reliant on it.
Recognising the need for urgent change, ARCC decided to develop two prototype buses – one fully electric model and another running on hydrogen fuel. The new designs were built from the ground up, with the aim of reducing overall bus weight and the energy required to power them on the road. Meeting these aims meant ARCC could deliver a dual benefit of emissions-free buses with a greatly reduced carbon footprint.
It was at this point Gardner Denver Transport was approached. ARCC came across the company’s earlier work with Wrightbus in 2012, which saw Hydrovane compressors installed on 1000 new hybrid-powered London Routemaster buses. The Australian company wanted to know more about the project and how the final package was developed to support all on-board pneumatic functions.
After an initial conversation, ARCC then visited Gardner Denver’s Redditch facility to get a better understanding of how the company could support the rollout of its own electric vehicles. David Evans at ARCC met with Gardner Denver Transport’s team of e-mobility experts who recommended the TA02 – the same model of compressor that was installed with great success across the New Bus for London project.
Dion Pearson, Sales Manager for Gardner Denver Transport in Australia, explains how this project developed: “It was clear that ARCC needed a committed partner to achieve its aims. Breaking into an established market is difficult at the best of times, particularly when introducing new or unproven technology, so the company needed a partner who could assure excellence and ongoing support.”
The work was such a success that ARCC then appointed Gardner Denver to work on its latest bus prototype powered by hydrogen fuel. Needing a lighter, more robust compressor, Gardner Denver offered a new package using the TX02. This model is ideally matched to electric drives, with its simple integration, lightweight design and quiet operation. The TX02 is also vibration-free, meaning passengers and pedestrians are guaranteed a comfortable journey – a key consideration for operators in this market.
As Pearson adds, the ARCC project underlines how Gardner Denver Transport is able to use its centralised expertise in the UK alongside local service centres: “We’ve made good use of our international network and regional presence here in Australia to deliver a quick and effective cross-border solution for the customer. Our team coordinated with HQ in the UK and, despite the time difference, were able to keep the project well on time and within budget.”
“Gardner Denver has been indispensable throughout the last four years and has played a key role in our efforts to provide sustainable public transport in Australia. The company’s products are easily integrated on our chassis but the team has made it clear they are happy to accommodate modifications where necessary. This kind of support is vital when you’re creating a vehicle with leading zero emission technology. We wanted the best products as we aim to be the best, in producing our Australian-designed-and-built bus.”
Gardner Denver’s work with ARCC is typical of its collaborative approach and ability to meet the needs of customers in overseas markets. The project also showcases the company’s engineering expertise, developing products that are capable of solving the latest industry challenges.
For more information on ARCC, visit their website.