Fraport is converting apron vehicles to electric drives

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The airport operator Fraport is gradually converting its vehicle fleet to electric drives. At the same time, the charging infrastructure at Germany's largest air traffic hub is being expanded and further developed. Today it still works conventionally, with electricity flowing from a charging station into the vehicle's batteries.

In the future, the current will also flow in the opposite direction. This means that electric vehicles become mobile storage devices that can feed unused electricity back into the grid if necessary. However, the technology is not yet ready for large-scale use, and the interfaces still need to be standardized. This is particularly true for many special vehicles used in aircraft handling.

Fraport receives funding from the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Policy for the broad implementation of this ambitious idea at the airport. Over the next four years, a total of over five million euros will flow to Frankfurt Airport as part of the federal program to promote electromobility. Fraport itself, together with other partners, will invest a further 4,1 million euros in the project.

“Frankfurt Airport provides an ideal, self-contained field test system for setting up a bidirectional charging infrastructure,” explains Michael Kuschel, Fraport Vice President for Energy and Networks. “Fraport plays all the important roles: we are both the network operator and the main customer. The charging stations are part of our own infrastructure, and we also provide the necessary software. This unique constellation allows us to model the required test environment, although not all technical and regulatory definitions are yet fully formulated.”

Frankfurt am Main Airport (Photo: Jan Gruber).
Frankfurt am Main Airport (Photo: Jan Gruber).