Cooperation with Goldhofer AG


Over 350 tons in motion: AKASOL supplies high-performance battery systems for aircraft pushback tractor »PHOENIX« E from Goldhofer

AKASOL AG supplies Goldhofer AG, a manufacturer of heavy and specialized transport vehicles, with its high-performance battery system AKASystem 15 OEM PRC 50. The battery system will be used in all towbarless aircraft tractors of the type »PHOENIX« E which the company now produces in series. An expansion of the cooperation to other vehicles is possible in the future.

“We are especially proud that Goldhofer has made the decision to use our battery systems and is thus making progress in the electrification of its vehicle models. The advantages of electrified heavy-duty and special transport vehicles are evident: no CO2 emissions, lower noise emissions, and more comfortable driving characteristics with significantly higher efficiency at the same time. The fact that the aircraft tractor can effortlessly tow over 350 tons illustrates that our battery systems can also be used in extremely power- and energy-intensive applications,” said Sven Schulz, CEO of AKASOL.

Following the test operation of the Goldhofer »PHOENIX« E at Munich Airport as well as Zurich Airport, the Memmingen-based company is now presenting the first serial vehicle at the GSE Expo in Las Vegas (Oct. 5-7, 2021). The electrified aircraft tow tractor with a 220 kW electric drive can effortlessly tow wide-body aircraft with a take-off weight of up to 352 tons and reaches speeds of up to 32 km/h. The AKASystem 15 OEM PRC 50 lithium-ion battery system provides the necessary energy in a modular battery concept with capacities of 66, 99, 132 and up to 165 kWh. The scalable battery system is liquid cooled, extremely robust, complies with IP67 and is certified according to ECE-R100, ECE-R10, DNV-GL and thus meets the highest safety requirements.

The electrified aircraft tractor pulls an Airbus A350-900

The towbarless aircraft tractor »PHOENIX« E can be charged at all common DC and AC charging stations with up to 150 kW (DC). The standard plugs CCS Type 1, CCS Type 2, CHAdeMO and GB/T can be used. Using fast-charging technology, the vehicle can be charged from 20 to 80 percent in as little as 30 minutes. With the highest battery capacity of 165 kWh, about 15 pushbacks are possible without interruption with the electrified aircraft tractor when using 80% of the capacity. Depending on the general conditions, such as outside temperature, road conditions and different aircraft types, a larger number of pushbacks is also possible. Long empty runs or long-distance towing are also possible with the »PHOENIX« E without any loss of performance. Compared to diesel-powered vehicles, the »PHOENIX« E offers enormous energy-saving potential, a reduction in noise, and is completely emission-free.

“The performance of our aircraft tractor »PHOENIX« E thereby includes the same towing capacity and the identical, enormously wide range of aircraft as the previous diesel variants. This is due in particular to the powerful lithium-ion battery systems from AKASOL. The switch to electrified propulsion is therefore possible without hesitation and thus enables emission-free operation. We are very pleased to now deliver our successful model »PHOENIX« E also in series with electric drive,” says Lothar Holder, Member of the Board and Head of Airport Technology at Goldhofer.

Charging process of the AKASOL battery system at the Goldhofer »PHOENIX« E

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