Why portable EV charging units – that can double as grid storage – are all the Go
By Sourced Externally
February 14, 2022
Like all the best ideas – they seem to be nowhere, then everywhere all at once as people around the world develop their own solutions to upcoming problems.
Portable power banks to provide emergency and/or convenience car charging is one of them. No sooner than the Sydney based Australian business, ReStart, announce its partnership with the RACV to install its units for on the road emergency charging and plans to provide portable on-site charge banks, that UK business ZipCharge announce that trials of their portable EV charging solution will soon commence.
ZipCharge’s Go charger is expected to contain from 4 to 8kWh of energy and be capable of charging from a domestic plug. This would provide between 32 to 64 kms of range at a 7.2kW EV charging rate, taking approximately 30 – 60 minutes to charge the vehicle. (Depending on the battery capacity, vehicle efficiency etc).
The Go unit is also planned to later become bi-directionally charging capable – meaning in the future, it could also function as a local energy storage device and feedback into the grid when not in use.
The unit includes control software and a mobile application that allows users to optimise the operation of the portable EV powerbank – including a suite of security features, such as user authentication and the ability to remotely monitor, track and disable the Go charger from the user’s mobile phone.
ZipCharge also suggests that this amount of control will generate operational and cost benefits for fleet owners.
Fleet vehicles needing a fast turn-around will no longer require other cars to be repositioned or wait in a queue to use a fixed charger. In other words, it helps allay range anxiety through giving a top-up charge for another local trip, or if needing a bigger charge for a longer trip, enable the car to comfortably reach a DC fast-charger.
The developers of the Go charger are also planning to extend their app and platform to include dedicated data dashboards for fleet managers to manage a suite of the units. The data gathered would allow fleet managers to monitor charging history as well as make informed recommendations that reduce operating costs and improve the total cost of the EV ownership equation.
For pricing and availability in the UK, ZipCharge Co-founder Jonathan Carrier says:
“We expect to confirm final pricing later this year in Q4 2022 as part of the pre-order process. Our mission is to democratise EV charging, which means the ZipCharge Go will be competitively priced and comparable to the purchase and full installation cost of a fixed home charger.”