Element Energy to lead study of a new on-street charging solution – from commercial case to customer acceptanceDecember 4, 2018
A new on-street charging solution will be studied in 2019Q1 with a view to deploying from 2019Q3. The Subsurface Technology for Electric Pathways (STEP) project involves the testing and evaluation of Trojan Energy’s innovative on-street charging solution – a flush connection where the chargepoint is slotted into the ground. The charger aims to help solve the issue for those without access to off-street parking, which is currently a major barrier for electric vehicle (EV) uptake. A key advantage of the technology is no permanent footprint or major street clutter, as there is only equipment at the pavement edge when the vehicle is charging.
Trojan Energy eventually plan on fitting entire streets with the technology, so that no matter where a consumer parks on the street, they will be able to charge their EV. Up to 20 connectors can run in parallel, requiring only one network connection. This will in turn create opportunities for demand aggregation and related revenues to make the cost of owning and running EVs cheaper.
Element Energy will lead the feasibility study. Other collaborators in the STEP project are:
- Trojan Energy – the technology developer, already have a patent for the system
- Two local authorities: London Borough of Brent and Birmingham City Council
- UK Power Networks – the Distribution Network Operator of South East England, including Brent.
The STEP project is part of the Electric vehicle charging for public spaces: feasibility studies competition, funded by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) in partnership with Innovate UK.
Councillor Waseem Zaffar, Cabinet Member for Transport and Environment at Birmingham City Council, said: “In Birmingham, increased use of electric vehicles will play a key role in our work to reduce harmful emissions on our city’s streets, but in order to do this we need to make sure that electric vehicle charging points are accessible to as many people as possible, including those who live in terraced houses or blocks of flats.
“I can speak from personal experience on this issue as I live in a terraced house and was looking to purchase an electric car, only to be told that charging could present problems, so I am delighted that we are now in a position where we can carry out a feasibility study to see if this innovative ‘pull-up-out-of-the-ground’ charging point scheme can provide a much-needed solution.”
As a first phase of an innovation funding programme worth c£40m, 27 feasibility studies will analyse the application and impact of innovative technologies for EV charging.
Among these, 18 studies will focus on how a well-design, well integrated EV charging infrastructure in public spaces can help facilitate the adoption of EVs among local residents without access to home charging due to lack of off-street parking.
These projects will define feasibility and sustainable models to maximise effectiveness and impact of infrastructure deployment. The wide variety of technologies and business models analysed in these studies will help implement a charging infrastructure that is affordable, dependable, and fair for all road users, and making owning an EV an attractive proposition for all.
In a subsequent phase of the funding round, the best projects will be competing for funding for implementation of real-world demonstrators.
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