We incorporate the most modern technology to improve the public transport services, make them easier to use and to protect the environment.
Discover some of the projects we are innovating:
As of July 2014, Passeig de Gràcia line 3 metro station acts like a small smart city. Factors such as temperature, humidity, outdoor weather conditions and number of passengers are monitored throughout the day. The station's subsystems, such as lighting, escalators and ventilation are modulated accordingly. Energy consumption is reduced without passengers even noticing.
This is a pilot scheme carried out under the European SEAM4US project, co-financed by the EU's 7th Framework Programme (FP7).
If positive results are obtained, it is planned to study the possibility of implementing the project in more Barcelona metro stations, provided the required investment is minimal. The project is part of TMB's environmental policies, which we make compatible with the requirements of our service.
More information in Hora Punta magazine.
In May 2013, the new bus network fleet incorporated three, 24-metre-long, bi-articulated hybrid buses, each with a capacity of 164 people, the first vehicles of this size used in urban passenger transport in Spain.
The three buses operate on the H12 route, which runs along Gran Via. From the outside you can tell them by the built-in fairing, streamlined front and double articulation, and also from their four axles and four doors.
This incorporation puts TMB at the forefront of innovation applied to public transport and quality of life, as it is the first operator in Europe to use 24-metre-long hybrid vehicles in urban routes.
More information on the bi-articulated buses page.
In February 2017, 40 articulated hybrid vehicles were added to the bus fleet. These 18-metre-long buses are of the same Solaris and Volvo models as the 27 that entered into service at the beginning of 2016.
They are hybrid, and use a parallel power train, a technology that combines the simultaneous use of electric motor and diesel engine. In addition, they are equipped with a stop-start system that shuts down the engine whenever the vehicle comes to a halt. These innovations reduce fuel consumption and emissions by 30% compared with the buses in service up until now.
As with all articulated buses built for TMB since 2015, they have four doors, this means that passengers can enter the bus through either of the two front doors speeding up boarding at bus stops.
They also have three ticket validating machines, push buttons for door-opening which are activated by passengers at bus stops, and USB connectors to enable passengers to charge their mobile devices. Furthermore, since all the vehicles are new, they are fully equipped to facilitate accessibility for users with disabilities or reduced mobility, including priority seating, automatic ramps, tactile push buttons for the blind and non-slip floors.
The new buses represent a rejuvenation of the fleet and further improve the environmental quality of the bus service.
More information about articulated hybrid buses in TMB News website.
Barcelona is one of ten European cities acting as demonstration sites for electric buses as part of ZeEUS (Zero Emission Urban Bus System), a project financed by the European Union and coordinated by the International Association of Public Transport (UITP), with the aim of developing 100% clean high-capacity vehicles. Similar testing is being carried out in London, Glasgow, Stockholm, Münster, Bonn, Pilsen and Càller.
Barcelona is participating in this R&D project by incorporating four zero-emission electric buses in regular TMB services with two distinct technologies: two standard model i2e Irizar buses, with batteries adapted for overnight charging, and two Solaris Urbino 18e articulated models, with batteries that can be charged during the daytime.
Phase one of the testing was carried out in 2014 with Irizar i2e 12-metre buses. The charging station began operation in September 2016 along with the first Solaris Urbino electric articulated buses, which began running with passengers on 30 January 2017.
Powered by 270 kW motors, these vehicles run all day thanks to their battery charging system, which enables them to be charged via a retractable pantograph on the roof at a specially built station in the Zona Franca, close to the end of the line. The process takes from 5 to 8 minutes and charges the battery up to 80%; sufficient for another run.
Endesa has installed and manages the charging points, which will be studied to facilitate the design of the infrastructure necessary to electrify the entire Barcelona bus fleet.
TMB is taking part in the ZeEUS project demonstrations under TMB environmental policy. By using electric vehicles in our fleet, we continue to advance in improving the environment and achieving our objective of clean public transport.
More information in the articles on the electric buses on the TMB News website and in the SlideShare deck "ZeEUS Project".
The new bus network, comprising a total of 28 high-performance routes or arterial roads is now in operation. Of these arterial roads, 17 are verticals (running mountain to sea), 8 are horizontal (Llobregat-Besòs) and 3 are radial, crossing the others diagonally. The new buses take the most direct routes possible and cross at right angles (orthogonal) so it is easier use for both seasoned public transport users and those that use it only sporadically.
This group of high-performance bus lines will be complemented by conventional interurban and urban routes and neighbourhood and local bus routes.
The main benefits to be gained once this new surface transport system is fully operational are as follows:
- A more legible network, one that is easier to use, also thanks to real-time user information systems.
- Shorter waiting and journey times; a more regular and more reliable service.
- Improved connectivity between the various modes of public transport, to make the most of the integrated fare system and favour the perception of the bus as part of a system.
- Public transport that is more attractive and more sustainable in environmental and economic terms, and consistent with the city model.
Of the 28 scheduled lines, five lines started running on 1 October 2012 and another five entered into service on 18 November 2013. Three new lines started operating on 15 September 2014 and one from the previous phase was restructured. On 29 February 2016 three new lines entered service making 16 fully operational.
More information in the section on the new bus network.
MouTV is a service information system via video screens promoted and managed by TMB for its bus and metro networks.
Developed in collaboration with leading outdoor advertisers JCDecaux, this new system is the result of major efforts to make the system operative on platforms, trains and buses, along with the contents manager by means of which the programme schedule is kept up to date.
This commitment to information places TMB at the international forefront of technology applied to improving the quality of service and customer satisfaction.
As part of our commitment to universal accessibility, TMB has developed technological support tools for the handicapped including the Sigthos programme, which makes our public information centres more accessible to the deaf; the Avicus portable audible alarm, which warns blind people when there are works in progress on the metro, or induction loops available for the Barcelona Bus Turístic audio guides, for people with hearing aids or cochlear implants.
The latest project to improve accessibility is a pioneering mobile app developed by TMB, ONCE and Vodafone that guides the blind and partially sighted with the aid of radio frequency beacons in metro stations and at bus stops. More information on the project in Hora Punta magazine and in TMB Notícies webpage.
More information in the Accessibility and reduced mobility section of this website.
Automation is the future of metro networks, offering greater safety, reliability, flexibility and economy. And Barcelona has line L9/10, the driverless line of reference in Europe, which includes advanced train control and supervision technology, station architecture and innovative operations management. Furthermore, L11, a conventional line has been automated.
For more information, see the Automated metro section.
This is the heart and brain of the metro network, from where, day and night, we ensure that the trains run regularly and properly, on both the conventional and automated lines. By means of radio and video communication systems, and with the help of remote control, the trains, station equipment, energy and ventilation are coordinated, problems are solved and passengers are kept informed.
For more information, see the document The Barcelona Metro Control Centre.
We take advantage of technological advances to help you save time on your journeys by bus and metro, whether you are travelling or are at home or in the street:
iBus: The TMB iBus system tells you how long before a bus gets to the stop, on your phone, mobile device or Internet. Find out how TMB iBus works
Bus and metro passenger information screens: User information screens at bus stops tell how many minutes wait you have before the bus arrives and also informs of any service disruptions. The passenger information service on board buses tells you which is the next stop, both on screen and by message announcement. The metro passenger information service, on screens on the platform, in lobbies and entrances, tell you how long before the next train and also informs of any service disruptions.
MouTV: MouTV is our new information, service and entertainment channel being installed on platforms and trains and on some bus lines. Learn more about MouTV
TMB App: TMBApp is an app for mobile devices to help you get about on public transport. It can be personalised in many ways, based on a profile created on JoTMBé Club, although it is not necessary to register to access basic information. This app replaces TMB Virtual. Find out how TMBApp works
TMB Maps: TMB Maps site is an interactive tool with functions that help you to plan journeys and get about on public transport. It contains detailed information to help you plan your route in real time on the go. Find out how TMB Maps works
QR Codes: Through QR code technology we provide rapid access to information on the TMB bus network. QR codes are labels, in this case attached to bus stops, that contain data (like barcodes, only they are two-dimensional) and can be read by mobile phone cameras. On reading the code, the phone automatically opens a browser page containing information on the buses that stop there, when the next buses are due and any alterations to services.
- TMB’s bus network has a number of dynamic systems that provide users with information in situ and in real time and that help enhance passenger experience.
- The more than 2,500 stop used by TMB buses comprise 400 dynamic information screens, 30 solar posts and 16 smartquesines, or smart shelters, in addition to information devices installed by Àrea Metropolitana de Barcelona (AMB), according to data from March 2016.
- Conventional screens at stops, also called user information screens (UIS), show the approximate due times of the buses that stop there.
- This information is also give on solar posts, which run autonomously on solar power and have minimum environmental impact.
- Smart bus shelters go beyond this, however, and in addition to providing information on bus due times, offer free Wi-Fi connection, mobile charging points and a download point for municipal apps via the Barcelona Contactless service. They also feature interactive touch screens that provide information on nearby points of interest and that various alternative transport and routes available.
- On board buses, users can stay informed thanks to two systems: MouTV screens and user information screens. These provide, inter alia, details of the status of the bus in real time during the journey, visual and auditory information on the name of the next stop or the bus route and links to other buses and the metro.