Mar 31, 2021

ChargePoint and NATSO achieve 150 DC fast-charging spots

EVs
Charging
USA
Dominic Ellis
3 min
With more than $11 million funding leveraged to date, new fast charge sites are connecting rural communities and enabling long distance electric travel
With more than $11 million funding leveraged to date, new fast charge sites are connecting rural communities and enabling long distance electric travel...

ChargePoint and NATSO have installed 150 DC fast charging spots in the first year of the National Highway Charging Collaborative.

The collaborative is increasing access to EV charging along highways and in rural North America by filling infrastructure gaps along the National Highway System, including along the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) designated alternative fuel corridors. The FHWA also highlights the National Highway Charging Collaborative as part of its Alternative Fuel Corridors Best Practices.

It has attracted support from some of the nation’s most prominent travel plaza, convenience store and truckstop brands, including Kum & Go, Donna’s Travel Plaza, Love’s Travel Stops and Trillium, its alternative and renewable fuel provider, and the Iowa 80 Group, among others. 

“ChargePoint’s ongoing effort to significantly expand access to charging across cities, rural communities, and along highways is core to our mission and the collaboration with NATSO is already making significant progress toward that goal,” said Colleen Jansen, Chief Marketing Officer, ChargePoint. 

“The National Highway Collaborative is poised to be one of the nation’s foremost examples of how partnerships can be designed to scale vital charging infrastructure. The progress to date has created the foundation for the scaling of fast charging to support long distance electric travel and enable fast charging in urban and rural communities as a complement to the buildout of level 2 charging nationwide. The buildout of charging is expected to increase in the coming years in line with dozens of new EV models anticipated to hit North American roads as the shift to electrification takes hold.”

NATSO President and CEO Lisa Mullings, said in order for consumers to move to EVs, they need to be confident that they will be able to refuel as reliably as they do today. 

"With thousands of established locations crisscrossing the nation, the private sector will ensure that drivers of electric-powered cars will not suffer from range anxiety. We are well suited to efficiently meet customer demand for electricity while providing the amenities and safe experience that they have come to expect as they refuel," she said.

Bloomberg NEF estimates EVs will make up 10 percent of all vehicles sold by 2025 and increase to more than 29 percent by 2030. With more than $11 million of public and private funding leveraged to date as part of the Collaborative, new fast charge sites are connecting rural communities and enabling long distance electric travel across more than eight states including California, Florida, Iowa, Missouri, and Washington. 

As part of an MOU announced in February 2020, the two organizations agreed that the National Highway Charging Collaborative will, by 2030:

  • Deploy charging infrastructure at 4,000 travel centers and fuel stops, leveraging $1 billion in capital
  • Provide charging infrastructure at fueling locations across the United States with a focus on connecting rural communities
  • Expand availability of charging infrastructure and connect existing Federal Highway Administration-designated FAST Act corridors
  • Work together to achieve policy outcomes to support each of these objectives

The Collaborative also advocates for public policies that are designed to create a business case for off-highway fuel retailers to invest in EV charging infrastructure.  In those jurisdictions, the initiative continues to identify an increasing number of public and private funding sources available to support the expansion of EV charging at strategically determined locations.

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Jun 22, 2021

Next Energy Technologies delivers PV window to Paris partner

Windows
SolarPV
construction
Paris
Dominic Ellis
4 min
Next Energy Technologies has delivered its energy-generating prototype window wall to Bouygues Construction in Paris

Next Energy Technologies, makers of a proprietary transparent PV coating that transforms commercial windows into energy producing solar panels, has delivered its PV Prototype Window Wall to Bouygues Construction in Paris.

Bouygues is a leading construction firm that specialises in complex commercial projects and the deal comes weeks after Next announced its $13.4 Million Series C round of funding (click here).

The PV Prototype Window Wall was delivered by NEXT in collaboration with its partners, Walters & Wolf, a leading commercial curtainwall manufacturer and glazing subcontractor headquartered in Fremont, California, and commercial glass fabricator, Glassfab Tempering  Services/Solarfab in Tracy, California. 

“NEXT’s technology is both unique and promising. We’re proud to support their collaboration with Bouygues Construction and will continue to work side by side with them in bringing their product to market,” said Nick Kocelj, President of Walters & Wolf.  

“We support NEXT Energy in their focused effort in providing a unique and innovative product to  the architectural market. When presented the opportunity to participate in this project, we were  eager to assist in any way possible”, said Brian Frea, President of Glassfab Tempering Services/ Solarfab. 

NEXT’s proprietary transparent PV coating transforms commercial windows into  energy-producing solar panels by converting unwanted infrared and UV light into electricity. This fully integrated system can help enable buildings to power themselves with their windows which  retain their traditional transparency and performance. 

The prototype installation consists of 10 transparent PV windows that supply electricity to a battery that powers an interactive display as well as auxiliary charging outlets, for phones, tablets and other electronics.

The purpose of this prototype demonstration is to showcase the  power generation functionality, the exceptional transparency and aesthetics, and the seamless  integration of NEXT windows into a standard glazing system designed by Walters & Wolf to  carry the electronics, wiring and hardware that comprise the balance-of-system. This direct integration into traditional commercial window and framing systems effectively extracts costs  typically associated with packaging and installation of solar. 

Installed in a typical commercial high-rise office building, the first generation of Next windows would offset as much as 10-20% of its power needs, and over a 30-year timeframe, such a building would produce about 20 million kWh of clean power, saving an average of $170,000  annually on utility bills and reducing 14,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, the equivalent of powering 1,700 homes for an entire year. In the coming years, Next windows will be commercially available for window sizes up to 5 ft. x 10 ft (1.5 x 3 meters).  

Supply Chain solution to the climate crisis 

Next’s PV coatings are applied to commercial windows during the window fabrication  process, integrating with existing manufacturers without disrupting established workflows and  supply chains. This capital-efficient business model reduces risks to customers, removes  barriers to adoption, and accelerates speed to market, all while adding a high-value product to  the market. This direct integration into traditional commercial window and framing systems  effectively extracts costs typically associated with packaging and installation of solar.

"We are excited to be one of the first global construction companies pioneering NEXT's revolutionary transparent solar panel windows. This innovation will allow Bouygues Construction to offer its clients a simple, sustainable, and profitable solution for buildings that are autonomous in the management of their energy," said Christian De Nacquard, R&D and Innovation Director, Bouygues Bâtiment International.

The EU aims to be climate-neutral by 2050, requiring a fundamental transformation of the construction and building sectors, and 100% of new commercial buildings in California will be designed to zero net energy (ZNE) standards by 2030. Globally, buildings generate an estimated 40% of annual GHG emissions.

“Addressing the climate crisis at the corporate level requires creative and cost-effective solutions. Commercial buildings are an excellent example of something that can be re-imagined and improved to reduce carbon emissions and overall impact,” said Daniel Emmett,
CEO of NEXT. 

“At a more personal level, we’re seeing employees returning to office buildings after more than a year of lockdown vocally prioritise healthy and sustainable work environments as a requirement of in-person work."

In a recent survey, 74% of employees said they would consider changing jobs if their company did not meet their requirements for a healthy and sustainable office environment, added Emmett.

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