Pfleg!E-mobil: Carers getting around electrically

Since December 2013, the carers at DRK OWL have been driving to their clients in little electric run-abouts. Seven electric cars have been integrated into the care fleet. Now the vehicles can be seen on the streets of Bielefeld every day and show that ambulatory care services can also get around with very little noise and low emissions. In this way, more than 10,000 kilometres are travelled electrically per month.

Use of the fleet is being examined in a trans-disciplinary investigation. Engineers (Chair of Prof. Dr. Jens Haubrock, Fachhochschule Bielefeld – University of Applied Sciences), economists (Chair of Prof. Dr. Dennis Kundisch, University of Paderborn) and sociologists (Chair of Prof. Dr. Alfons Bora, University of Bielefeld) are studying the fleet's use of e-cars to collect and evaluate real data. Stadtwerke Bielefeld municipal utilities, which already electrified part of its fleet in 2010, is also contributing its know-how on the subject of electromobility, as is the Small Energies und Transporter Store engineering firm. The project is also supported by transfer partners such as the City of Bielefeld and Bielefeld Wirtschafts- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (WEGE) (Bielefeld Economic and Development Association).

Engine for progress:

• savings potential of the Bielefeld care fleet alone: 1,623 tonnes of CO2
• use of 7 e-mobiles at DRK, savings of 14 tonnes of CO2
• utilisation of the e-mobile to store electricity (vehicle-to-grid approach)
• interdisciplinary research approach with reference to economic, sociological and technical aspects

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Photo: Projektbüro Pfleg!E-mobil

A carer charging the electric car at the municipal utilities charging station. Because the fleet travels two daily routes – in the morning and in the afternoon – regular charging is possible in between.

Commercial fleets – the market segment with potential

Already, many commercial routes are covered using electric vehicles (EVs). The use profiles of cars in firm fleets correspond to a large extent to the optimal utilisation profile for e-vehicles. So the use of electric cars in fleets already promises to be economically viable in the near future. Commercial fleets can also assume the role of a multiplier for positive experiences with electromobility.

The results of the investigation

The combination of the three scientific investigations provides a comprehensive overview. Conditions for the successful use of EVs in commercial fleets were successfully determined. Moreover, the research results show how the capacity for energy storage can be used to best effect both for planned trips and within the context of system services. On this basis, workable business models can be developed, that make the special economical potentials of electrified vehicles useful.
The results were transferred to an online decision-making support system, with which fleet operators can review the electrification potential of their fleet very easily: To the Web-Quick-Check

Photo: DRK OWL

"The use of electric cars is worthwhile for us in two regards: Not only do we operate a resource-saving and environmentally friendly fleet, the carers also have great fun getting about electrically."

Michael Beimdiek, Managing Director of DRK Social Services OWL

Partners and sponsors

  • FH Bielefeld
  • DRK Soziale Dienste OWL
  • Stadtwerke Bielefeld
  • Universität Paderborn / C-Lab
  • Fachhochschule Bielefeld
  • Universität Bielefeld
  • Transporter Store
  • Ingenieurbüro small energies
  • Landesregierung NRW
  • EU-Förderung