New Delhi: As many as fifteen electric buses based on economically viable battery technology are being developed in collaboration with ISRO and they would be on roads within six months on a pilot basis, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Wednesday.
"It has been decided to design electric transportation system for buses in collaboration with ISRO. The Ministry is committed to promote research and innovation and you can anticipate some breakthrough in some six to twelve months," Gadkari said.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has already developed lithium ion battery for use in satellites and after collaboration with it, the work has started on testing these batteries to find what modifications are needed to use them for automobile, he said.
"My focus is to convert the existing buses running on costly imported fuel to electric and we plan to start a pilot project to test about 15 buses in State Transport Undertakings within six months. The Ministry would fund the project," he said.
He said such buses will not only check pollution by cutting down carbon emissions specially in urban areas but would cut on huge import bills as the nation suffers because of foreign exchange outgo.
It will also help state transport bodies to cut losses because of high cost of fuel, he said adding, "Pollution is one of the major problems and alternative is to adopt cleaner fuel and vehicle technologies."
Elaborating on the initiatives to check pollution, he said the Ministry has already notified standards for registration of bio-ethanol, bio-CNG engines and besides notifying standards for bio-diesel while already ethanol-run bus is being tested in Nagpur.
Earlier, he had said that bio-friendly fuel will cut on huge crude import bills to the tune of Rs 8 lakh crore per annum.