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Bosch takes top ranks in a European innovation ranking for alternative drive systems
According to the Thomson Reuters “2016 State of Innovation” report, when it comes to alternative drive systems, Bosch holds more patents than any other company in Europe. The analysis was based on the number of patents that companies filed between 2011 and 2015. Even in a global comparison, Bosch did very well with 3,057 inventions: only Toyota did better during the same time period. In the general ranking of the most innovative companies in the automotive industry, in 2015 Bosch took third place behind Toyota and Hyundai, with a total of 2,390 patents.
The high ranking is largely attributable to the company’s activities in the realm of e-mobility, which is considered decisive for reducing the CO2 emissions caused by road traffic and conserving fossil fuels, which are increasingly scarce around the world. Each year, Bosch spends 400 million euros on e-mobility related research and development activities. The aim is to enable the technology to achieve a breakthrough.
Bosch’s development work not only includes continuous innovation in the areas of electric motors, power electronics, and batteries. The company is also working on developing a networked charging infrastructure. Most recently, Bosch Software Innovations cooperated with carmakers to develop charging apps for the owners of electric vehicles. With the help of their smart phones, the electric cars can now be navigated to the next charging station, where drivers can make a cash-free payment using the app. The service, which is already offered by Mercedes-Benz and smart, and will soon also be available for Renault drivers, already includes a network of 3,700 charging stations of different providers across Germany. Some 80 percent of the stations in the network are public charge stations. The network is an important step toward making electric vehicles suitable for everyday use, and thus more attractive to potential buyers.
Bosch software plays a key role in the energy turnaround
Bosch is pushing the transition to e-mobility forward
The preliminary figures that were recently published showed that the Bosch Group’s innovation strategy is paying off. In 2014, the company’s sales increased 6.2 percent to 48.9 billion euros, and this despite a challenging market environment. Especially at Bosch Mobility Solutions (formerly known as Automotive Technology), Bosch recorded significant growth.
“We see ourselves as a provider of solutions for the mobility of the future, which will be automated, connected, and electric,” says Dr. Volkmar Denner, chairman of the Bosch board of management. Not only does the company develop energy-efficient automotive components for diesel, gasoline, and electric vehicles, it also offers software solutions and technologies that aim to increase the use of low-carbon mobility solutions. For instance, Bosch Software Innovations has developed an app that makes it easier to book and pay for charging stations across Germany. In the past, users needed a customer card for each individual provider. Thanks to Bosch, the entire offer is now available via a single app.
Moreover, with Stuttgart Service, Bosch is now involved in a project that aims to promote eco-friendly traffic concepts and make the transition to e-mobility in Stuttgart much more attractive. The concept allows users to combine the most suitable modes of transport for their selected routes. Via an online platform, public transport services are networked with car and bike sharing providers. Electric charging stations are also included in the mix. In the future, the platform will be able to process some 400,000 requests per day.
Twenty-three partners are cooperating on the project, which is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economics as part of the “Electromobility showcase” project. The intermodal information and booking platform was designed by Bosch Software Innovations.
More information about networked mobility solutions can be found here
Virtual power plants are helping push the energy turnaround forward
Renewable sources of energy play a decisive role in efforts to significantly reduce CO2 emissions around the world. However, the transition to a sustainable energy supply can only succeed if energy from renewable sources can contribute to the basic supply quickly and reliably. In other words, even when the wind is not blowing or sunshine is nowhere to be seen, power must continue to flow seamlessly into the grid. Virtual power plants can ensure that this is the case. Such plants are complex systems that can pool the power generated by photovoltaic arrays and wind parks in a single storage system. Virtual power plants can offset fluctuations between energy supply and demand. As a result, they help provide consumers with power from renewable sources of energy as needed, and are thus pushing the energy turnaround forward.
From wind turbines and energy storage systems to software-based control systems, Bosch offers a broad range of solutions. For more information on virtual power plants, a sample project, and an interview with an expert on the matter, please consult our current online special: Technology for the energy turnaround.