UK-based Connected Energy and Groupe Renault have installed two quick-charge stations based on the innovative E-STOR energy storage technology on highways in Belgium and Germany. Motorists there will be the first in the world to benefit from this service.
The E-STOR technology developed by Connected Energy uses second-life batteries from Renault electric vehicles. With the E-STOR system, the batteries are recharged at low power, and the stored energy is then released at high power. It thus becomes possible to offer electric vehicle charging services in locations where constructing a high power connection to the power grid would be very costly. Economical and simple to install, E-STOR will contribute to the development of a network of quick-charging stations in Europe.
“We are developing a range of E-STOR systems, some, like the two installed in Belgium and Germany are designed specifically to enable lower cost more sustainable electric vehicle charging so it’s very great to see these in action,” commented Matthew Lumsden, Managing Director of Connected Energy. “We are now talking to several parties about projects in the UK and Europe and look forward to wide scale roll out in coming months.”
A circular economy solution
As a pioneer and leader in electric vehicles in Europe, Renault is doing its part to support the energy transition by re-using the batteries from its electric vehicles for stationary energy storage. The solutions offered by Renault with its partners have multiple applications, from individual homes and multiple-unit residences to industrial sites.
Electric vehicle batteries generally have a service life of eight to ten years. However, they still have substantial capacity for further use in stationary applications, thus extending their life before recycling. It is particularly to optimise this complete life cycle that Renault has set up the rental of the battery with its customers of electric vehicles.
“Groupe Renault is supporting the development of charging infrastructures to simplify the daily life of electric vehicle drivers. Using our second-life batteries in fast EV charger contributes to progress by providing charging station operators with economical solutions. Moreover, it is a perfect example of circular economy implementation,” says Nicolas Schottey, Head of Electric Vehicle Batteries and Charging Infrastructures Program.
Benefits beyond EV charging
Connected Energy’s E-STOR systems also offer a solution to load management for use on industrial and commercial sites. Systems can be controlled by a sophisticated energy optimisation platform to provide a reliable and proven complimentary power source at peak tariff times.
E-STOR works with a company’s onsite solar PV, or micro wind turbines, storing and releasing energy directly into site systems thereby avoiding the financial shortfalls of exporting to the Grid. E-STOR can also provide new revenue streams by providing balancing services to the grid operator.