Volkswagen has come up with a new idea to make electric vehicle (EV) chargers portable.
As much as companies are working on electric vehicles, they’re also working on new ways to charge those vehicles. The recently announced fast charging system from Porsche and BMW is one significant advancement. Now this portable charger from Volkswagen might be the next piece of the charging puzzle.
Volkswagen says the charger is perfect for short-term events, or as a temporary charger to test out potential sites for EV charging stations. Since the charger is still in a testing phase, it doesn’t seem like Volkswagen has completely nailed down the best use case scenarios for the device yet, but there are clearly a lot of advantages to making EV chargers portable.
“The mobile charging stations are a decisive step toward an efficient network of charging points. They can be set up anywhere as required – with or without connection to the power supply. This flexibility enables a completely new approach for the rapid expansion of the charging infrastructure,” reads a statement from Thomas Schmall, chairman of the board of management of Volkswagen Group Components in a December 27th press release.
The concept charger can power roughly 15 vehicles before its 360 kWh battery runs dry. The charger can plug into an existing power grid to recharge itself at a rate of 30 kW from an alternating current (AC) outlet.
The portable station delivers power at a rate of 100 kW, which means its capable of charging some electric vehicles in 17 minutes, according to the company’s press release. The charger can also power four vehicles at once as long as two are using AC connections, while the other two use DC. There is no specific mention if the DC charging is faster than the AC, but that’s typically the case.
The station uses battery technology from Volkswagen’s Modular Electric Toolkit (MEB). This means the company can recycle old batteries from electric Volkswagens and use them in the charging stations. MobileSyrup has reached out to see if this means that some chargers will have less capacity then others.
So far the company is the only pilot testing these charges in Wolfsburg, Germany, but it plans to move the project into production by 2020.
Source: Volkswagen Automotive Group