Rosenbauer’s electric aerial ladder prototype set for 2022 launch

Rosenbauer is expanding its electric vehicle fleet for fire and rescue services. Following in the tyre-prints of the company’s RT fire fighting vehicle and a logistics vehicle, the first L32A-XS aerial ladder is now also being electrified.

The top priority of Rosenbauer’s development engineers is to make the electric aerial ladder just as functional, powerful and reliable as the company’s standard aerial ladder and to ensure the same ease of operation, serviceability and spare parts availability. That’s why only high-quality OEM components are used for the electric aerial ladder: the ladder set of the proven L32A-XS and the series chassis of the Volvo FE Electric.

Both the classic and the electric L32A-XS are based on the same aerial ladder technology from Rosenbauer Karlsruhe and offer the same fire fighting tactical benefits. The aerial rescue structure is largely identical, but the drive concept differs significantly. While the classic XS is powered by an internal combustion engine, the electric aerial ladder has three electric motors: two for the traction drive and one for aerial ladder operation (ePTO with 70kW). Power is provided by two or three lithium-ion batteries with a capacity of 66kWh each.

With battery capacities of 132 or 198kWh, the electric L32A-XS has more than enough on-board power to perform typical aerial ladder operations reliably and without interruptions.

The battery packs can be charged with alternating current from standard industrial power sockets or at suitable direct current charging stations. An external supply can also be used during aerial ladder operation.

Rosenbauer has been working on the electrification of fire fighting vehicles for more than seven years, and in autumn 2020 it launched the RT, the first new-generation fire fighting vehicle. The Berlin fire department has been testing the RT in regular operation since February 2021 and has completed around 800 missions in the last eight months, more than 90% of which were purely battery-powered, without any power generated by the range extender. With their eLHF, the emergency crews are not only environmentally friendly, but are also exposed to fewer exhaust and noise emissions at the operation site. This improves the working conditions around the vehicle, reduces stress levels and benefits the local residents.

The first electric aerial ladder prototype, based on DIN EN 14043:2014 and EN 1846, will be presented in summer 2022. Schutz & Rettung Zürich, the largest civil rescue organisation in Switzerland, is the first lead customer for the test operation.