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Imagine being able to charge your vehicle wirelessly whilst you drive, without having to stop your journey every time you need extra power? ElectReon is an Israeli’s company that has developed a unique Dynamic Wireless Power Transfer (DWPT) technology. The solution is promising low cost, easy to deploy, 85% efficient, reliable and clean EV charging. 

Noam Ilan is ElectReon’s VP, Business Development and a company co-founder. He offered up his responses to our questions.

Previously Ilan co-founded Capital Nature; Israel’s leading clean energy and mobility investment and acceleration firm, which was also the very first investor in ElectReon.  

How Does DWPT Work?

Ilan tells us that the technology is comprised of three main elements.

A receiver, installed at the bottom of every bus or vehicle, enables the reception of energy during the drive without changing driver habits. It transmits the energy directly to the engine in the same way that batteries do.

A unique copper coil, that is passive and comprises one metre segments, is added to the road infrastructure and located under the driving lanes. When a vehicle rides over a given segment, it transmits energy to the receiver.

A smart inverter transfer the energy from the electricity grid to the stripe, communicating in real time with all vehicles within the system.

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Ilan says the solution has many cost benefits.

“ElectReon’s cost-saving system provides lower bus costs (battery-free electric buses), lower operational cost per km (70% reduced cost compared with diesel buses), lower infrastructure and maintenance costs (75% reduced cost compared with trolley buses). The system also creates energy due to vehicle braking, and can share that energy with other vehicles within the grid.” 

The solution does work with electric cars (Renault has given them an electric Renault Zoe for testing at its HQ in the town of Beit Yana). But, for the moment, ElectReon is concentrating on the public transit sector as buses, unlike cars, have fixed routes.

Ilan says the current solutions for electrifying public transit in depots or at fast charging stations have many challenges. He notes that DWPT can provide cost savings since the required batteries are much smaller than the current ones used for electric buses.

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Testing in Tel Aviv

The technology is going to be fully tested fully in a pilot project in Tel Aviv. The project – in partnership with ElectReon’s investor the Dan bus company – will involve the deployment of a one kilometer electric road between Tel Aviv university and the city’s train station.

The aim of the project is to check out all technical and economic aspects involved in the operation of an electric bus on this route.  

Ilan tells us: “The technology has the potential of enabling the city of Tel Aviv to fully revert to electric transportation including public transportation, delivery trucks as well as private and autonomous vehicles.”   

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A World First for ElectReon-led Consortium

In Sweden, SmartRoad Gotland is the name of the E-road consortium that has commenced building a demonstration road. It’s a public-private initiative based on ElectReon’s technology that’s set to be a world first to charge an electric truck and bus whilst in full motion.

The plan is to deploy a fully functional public shuttle service through a 1.6 km long electric road as part of a total route of 4.1 km between the airport and town centre of Visby on the idyllic island of Gotland, which is an eco-municipality in the middle of the Baltic Sea.

The project is financed by the Swedish Transport Administration (Trafikverket) as part of the roadmap of the Swedish government to reduce CO2 emissions from heavy transportation.

Ilan explains: “Smart Road Gotland will create a vital learning curve for the authority. Long haul heavy truck fleets benefit significantly from the ElectReon solution since no heavy and costly batteries, nor stops for charging, are needed. This optimal solution enables installation of electric road systems without the environmental impact of a conductive system.”

After acquiring the results of the demonstration, the Swedish Transport Administration will evaluate the potential for larger scale electric road investments..

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2030 Visions

ElectReon predicts that the integration of autonomous vehicles along with DWPT technology will eventually lead to cheaper public transportation that can operate 24/7 without the need for charging.

In the future, ElectReon intends to provide additional services for its customers, such as consumer billing systems, traffic management and the infrastructure for autonomous cars.

Looking even further ahead, Ilan offers up this vision for urban mobility in 2030: “Autonomous  transportation based on light EVs with a minimal battery operating 24/7, no charging or fuel station so the city has no visual hazards, optimal operation because no need to stop for charging, cost effective with minimal use of heavy and polluting batteries.” 

1 COMMENT

  1. Why isn’t the vehicle charging itself by itself? The vehicle will be dependent on the conduction by the installations in the road paid for by the taxpayer, and perhaps the installation can be made as a fence instead of embedded in the asphalt.

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