Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

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NewcastleFalcon
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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by NewcastleFalcon » 03 Dec 2019, 13:19

The travelling public including me have become accustomed to pulling in at any old petrol station and being able to buy petrol.

Current EV charging network (or should I say networks) doesn’t let you pull in at any charger (suitable for your vehicle of course) and buy electricity. (At least not without being a member of the various different clubs and having an app, or a card)

I wonder if the charging network as it develops will gravitate towards your roadsidefilling stations.

Our recent stop off at Wetherby is a case in point. Ecotricity have the Service station monopoly at The large Wetherby Services,, unavailable to yours truly because of not possessing a smart phone.

In theory you could spend 4hours at Wetherby tethered to a 7 kW charger, but the only available chademo fast charger was at a hotel 3 miles up a country lane. If that had been out of action we would have come unstuck on our maiden voyage out of Northumberland :)

One thing which would be good to copy from the petrol infrastructure is its convenience, but also the price advertising. We all know the price of petrol although complicated by tax is boldly displayed as a simple price per litre. A simple price/kWh for electricity at the point of purchase, and let the providers of the electric pumps compete on that basis, and importantly making paying at the pump or in the kiosk available to all ev drivers without having to be in a particular electricity club.

Regards Neil

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by mickthemaverick » 03 Dec 2019, 13:51

NewcastleFalcon wrote:
03 Dec 2019, 13:19
The travelling public including me have become accustomed to pulling in at any old petrol station and being able to buy petrol.

I wonder if the charging network as it develops will gravitate towards your roadsidefilling stations.

Regards Neil
Substitute the word "fuel" for petrol in the first sentence and it defines what will be needed in the future, the fuel being electricity.
I am sure that filling station proprietors will not be slow in realising that the electric world will give them the opportunity to hold their customers captive for charging times and thus provide them with opportunities to enhance their profits from diverging services. eg, "Charge your car and tan your body in 20 minutes" or "Charge your car and have your hair/nails done"i etc As a result I am sure it will soon have the payment system rationalised so any driver can charge at any station and thereby make any driver a potential customer for any supplier. Of course whichever way it develops you can be sure it will be governed by supplier's profits rather than customer needs!! :( :(

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by Gibbo2286 » 03 Dec 2019, 14:07

I think the ability to charge at home will limit the number of entrants to the charge supply market, you can't generate or buy petrol at home so there is a ready supply of custom for petrol stations, it will be much less so for electricity stations.

The cost of setting up plus the time to serve each customer will make the project far less profitable unless the price is high.

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white exec
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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by white exec » 03 Dec 2019, 14:27

For rapid charging points which are occupied, it might make sense for each to have a highly-visible "minutes left" display. For clusters of them, one display would do, as would (Simon's suggestion of) a single queue. Carrefour here operate very successful "fila unica" in their hypermarkets, where one queue rapidly feeds a dozen checkouts.

Hopefully also some means of summoning absent drivers back to their cars as soon as the top-up is finished. That could be fun, and a source of frustration...

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by bobins » 03 Dec 2019, 15:05

How's about an hour's grace period after your car has completed its charge, and after that the hourly charge doubles all the time you are sitting on a charge point without needing it ? :)

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by mickthemaverick » 03 Dec 2019, 15:21

It would seem to me that the incorporation of inductive charging (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inductive_charging) into the infrastructure may well be a possible solution for those who do not have off street parking. Inductive chargers can be both static and dynamic which means a number of options may become viable. eg. burying static chargers under the road and fed by underground cabling would eliminate most of the potential vandalism issues. You could have chargers buried under parking spaces wherever they can be fed thus eliminating cable connection and associated fault liability. Buried "charging rails" along the centre of the slow lane on motorways would allow EV drivers to recharge while making long distance journeys. It would seem that VW are researching this area with a view to kitting their EV's with the capability. Obviously the usual economic constraints may make induction non-viable for many but it would still be a solution where more conventional means cannot be used.

In the signal transmission world there are many examples of situations which cannot be resolved by normal means but a solution was found when the user was prepared to bear the additional cost. eg. to my personal knowledge there are at least five broadband users in Scotland who paid for their own microwave links in order to facilitate their own needs, when conventional broadband was simply not available. 8-)

Obviously some form of digital handshake would be required to connect to any particular charger to enable the supplier to bill the user according to the power consumed but such systems are already in use in other fields so not a problem. :)

Or you could buy a horse! :-D

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by NewcastleFalcon » 03 Dec 2019, 15:53

There are relatively steep penalties for overstaying your welcome at some charging stations.

The geniepoint one we used at Morrison’s would slap an immediate £10 additional charge for going a second over 90 minutes, which you would be hard pushed to do.


Yes and as I have now found out Engie who own Geniepoint are 24 % owned by the State of France.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Engie

Regards Neil

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by Mandrake » 03 Dec 2019, 17:44

mickthemaverick wrote:
03 Dec 2019, 13:10
Considering this issue in general, it occurred to me that local charging points could be installed using large capacity batteries and commercial wind generators. The generators are capable of producing 3-4Mwatts now so that when the wind blows power could be stored in batteries under the service station where the current tanks are, and then tapped as required for rapid charging. This method would remove the need for local network loading and also have the advantage of guiding you to a station by sight of the wind generator. Of course once the batteries were drained you would need to wait for the wind which is a failing but at least you would get a free hook-up, ie: there would be no charge!! :-D
Most rapid chargers in the UK today are 50kW however 150kW and 350kW rapid charging standards exist, have some roll out already, (mostly outside the UK sadly) and would place such high instantaneous demands on the local grid interconnect (if you had say 8 chargers) that there are already companies who are designing and building rapid charger clusters backed with local battery storage.

The idea is that the on-site battery charges from the local grid at a lower peak power rate, then delivers high peak power to cars over a short period of time, and has enough energy to fully charge several cars from what it stores. Essentially it smooths out the demand on the local grid interconnect so that instead of peaking to say 1MW with several cars charging at once then dropping to near nothing again when the charging stalls are idle it might draw an average of 100kW across the day.

This greatly reduces the burden on the local grid infrastructure. Furthermore they plan to make this storage two way and act as distributed grid storage. In other words not only can the battery supply cars charging at the site, it can supply energy back into the grid at peak times if it is not being consumed by charging cars and grid demand is high, like the hornsdale wind farm battery bank in Australia.

To make it possible for renewables like wind and solar to provide a larger percentage of the current base load there has to be a lot of grid attached storage available, (there is very little at the moment) and preferably distributed around the country where power is needed to minimise the load on the main interconnects.

The companies putting in these battery backed rapid charger cluster installations see an opportunity to also provide grid stabilisation and storage services back to the national grid, and there is a great synergy there as the local battery can do double duty load smoothing for charging cars and grid storage for the grid itself. In fact I've seen some suggestion that they might actually make more profit from the rapid charger site providing the grid storage services than actually charging cars! :lol:

If nothing else, if they need the battery for the high power rapid charging hub to work anyway, any money made feeding power back into the grid during peak hours is money from otherwise idle equipment.

You're unlikely to see wind generators at rapid charging sites however there are already rapid charging sites in the UK that have both local battery storage and solar panels to supplement the grid connection, in particular those in Dundee:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland- ... l-49796127

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by white exec » 03 Dec 2019, 18:04

BMW did work on inductive charging/supply of fleets of delivery trucks (carrying vehicle components between their factories) several years ago. High-frequency cables were buried under road lanes, to provide contactless energy transfer. This turned out to be successful, iirc. I think the same company (?) also offer a (rather pricey) charging 'pad', over which a car can be parked.

'Inductive' could be a neat solution for roadside, unobstructed charging, also applicable to car parks and service areas. That would need some joined-up thinking and action from local and national government, and the automotive sector. Little chance of that at the moment...!

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by NewcastleFalcon » 03 Dec 2019, 18:46

I think we are getting good value out of this thread.... excellent contributions. Always something new going on, and with the big players acquiring themselves in hopefully some rapid development underway. Of course to keep me going, I don’t reallly need those super fast chargers, just need more chademos at 30 mile intervals and the UK is my oyster :) albeit at a very leisurely pace :)

Regards Neil

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by white exec » 03 Dec 2019, 20:06

If Citroën teaches us anything (and I guess others might too :-k), it's that creative thinking was always at the heart of the marque. That creates a mind-set for innovation, and thinking outside the box. It's something we should be proud of, and some of it is alive and well here, thanks goodness!

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by mickthemaverick » 03 Dec 2019, 20:20

white exec wrote:
03 Dec 2019, 20:06
If Citroën teaches us anything (and I guess others might too :-k), it's that creative thinking was at the heart of the marque. That creates a mind-set for innovation, and thinking outside the box. It's something we should be proud of, and it's alive and well here, thanks goodness!
Here here!!
I followed my single site thoughts and realised that if and when the development of lightening cacheing gets going then the rural charging station may well be an ideal site for such an installation. There is a huge amount of academic work on the internet looking at lightening as a renewable energy source and I do think it will be viable but probably not in the near future. Storage of that energy source permitting, the available quantity is impressive. Given that one single lightening bolt carries enough power to run over 50 houses for a day and there are enormous amounts of lightening in the clouds on a virtually continuous basis, then locally sited charging stations with wind, sun, hydro and lightening sources become a viable option to run our electrical vehicles for "free" once the capital investment is recovered with appropriate profits for the operators. Will it actually happen? we need a visionary government and worldwide co-operation to make it happen but I am convinced it is possible!! :) :)

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by bobins » 03 Dec 2019, 20:40

I was listening to Radio 4 this afternoon (Costing The Earth https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000bx22) and part of the programme covered the logistics of the UK going 'Green'. Once you add up all the various plans, concepts, targets, ideas, quotas, agreements, et al, you start to run in to problems of - not just funding it - but general logisitcs of achieving these plans. A few examples - IIRC, the ballpark figure for turning each house carbon neutral is £10-20k, we could run into problems of not enough manufacturing capacity for all the windturbines needed, there could very easily be a skills shortage for plumbers and electricians needed for transforming all of our houses.
The 'winning' projects will no doubt be the ones where Big Business can make most money, though I'm not sure what those winning projects would be.

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Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by NewcastleFalcon » 03 Dec 2019, 21:57

In the context of Electric Car Recharging Infrastructure in the UK, we have a large declaration of interest from the French Government. Electricity de France (84% owned by the French State) in talks to take over Pod-point and ENGIE (owned 24% by the French State) recently took over GeniePoint.

REgards Neil

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Re: Electric Vehicles-Infrastructure

Post by myglaren » 04 Dec 2019, 20:41

Looks like a bit of a problem in California