Innovating for the energy transition and beyond

Posted: 28 May 2024 | | No comments yet

Intelligent Transport’s Editor, Leah Hockley, sits down with RTC’s Christian Lebeuf, Thomas Lahille of RATP Dev Transit London and GIRO’s Houari Cheikhi to discuss the industry’s shift to electric vehicles and how technology can make the transition smoother.

The current state of the energy transition in public transport is marked by significant advancements and ambitious goals. Cities worldwide are increasingly adopting electric buses, trams and other zero-emission vehicles to reduce their carbon footprint and improve air quality. Initiatives such as the electrification of bus fleets and the expansion of electric vehicle charging infrastructure are gaining momentum, supported by governmental policies and investments. Moreover, renewable energy sources are being integrated into public transport systems to further enhance sustainability.

While challenges remain, including the need for more extensive charging networks and technological improvements, the shift towards greener public transportation is well underway, reflecting a broader commitment to combating climate change and fostering urban resilience.

Here, Intelligent Transport Editor Leah Hockley sits down with Reseau de Transport de la Capitale’s (RTC) Christian Lebeuf, Thomas Lahille of RATP Dev Transit London and GIRO‘s Houari Cheikhi to discuss the energy transition, including the key steps that organisations should undertake in preparing their operations for the integration of electric buses, what challenges can arise during the implementation of large-scale deployments and what software ecosystems are required to support the integration of electric buses.

Key learning points

The major steps in integrating electric buses into operations

  • Preparing operations for this major shift
  • Project and stakeholder management
  • Required software ecosystems that need to be put in place.

Large-scale deployment: Challenges in increasing the electric bus fleet

  • Global vision
  • Challenges of large-scale deployment
  • Careful planning.

Managing and optimising energy costs

  • Energy management challenges with large electric bus fleets
  • Lessons learned.

Christian Lebeuf RTCChristian Lebeuf, Executive Director of Technology at Reseau de Transport de la Capitale (RTC), is a manager in the field of information technology for more than 20 years, with more than five years of experience in the public transport sector. As head of the technology sector with RTC in Quebec City, he set up and launch the electrification program of the bus fleet, put in place, and supervise the team in charge of the deployment of the IT systems required for the operation of Quebec future tramway. He also assured the realization of many projects like the implementation of mobile payment, new radiotelecommunication system and deployment of a data integration platform. Before joining the RTC he worked in consulting services at CGI as Director of Consulting services, in the finance industry as Vice-President of IT and in the manufacturing industry as the Director of IT for the company Garant, the largest Canadian manufacturer of none-power tools. Mr. Lebeuf holds a degree in computer science from UQTR (University Quebec in Trois-Rivieres) and graduate certificate in business management from University Laval (Quebec).

Thomas Lahille RATPThomas Lahille, a transportation engineer, has developed a solid expertise in planning and operations with major French operators. His diverse experience has led him to work in a variety of contexts and internationally. He is currently Head of Planning & Schedules at RATP Dev Transit London, where he strives for operational excellence and team synergy.

Houari Cheikhi GIROHouari Cheikhi is Director of Business Development and Innovation at GIRO, a world-leading provider of integrated software solutions for public transport planning and operations. He leads GIRO’s international business-development activities related to electric-bus fleets. Houari has 20 years of experience in public transport software solutions, including 15 years in charge of business applications at the group level for a major international public transport group. He has managed many large-scale international projects contributing to public transport performance, innovation and digitalisation. Houari holds a degree in Software Engineering and Operations Research from INSEA, an ESSEC/Mannheim Business School Executive MBA, and PMP and Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certifications.