SPIE UK roll out rapid EV charging along major UK roads
SPIE UK is to be responsible for the planning and design of electric charging stations at strategic locations along the United Kingdom’s major road infrastructure. Each station will provide six ultra-fast charging points, facilitated by a 1.25MW transformer with grid connection.
The work forms part of a pan-European contract awarded to the SPIE Group by IONITY to support the deployment of 400 high power charging stations across Europe by 2020. The contract scope is large-scale and consistent with SPIE’s strategy and demonstrates the company’s primacy and expertise in the Smart City and e-mobility markets.
Created in 2016 as a joint venture by the car manufacturers BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Ford, Audi and Porsche (Volkswagen Group), IONITY, located in Munich (Germany), is building a network of high-power charging stations for electric vehicles across Europe. Mainly positioned along major roads, the 400 charging stations planned for 2020 will be fitted with an average of six charging points, each with a capacity of up to 350 kW.
IONITY has commissioned SPIE to carry out two types of operations: the preparation of 66 charging stations in the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, France, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia and the deployment of 103 stations in Germany, Belgium, France, Poland, Hungary and the Netherlands. SPIE will be responsible for the various stages prior to the installation of the charging stations, including planning, compliance and preparation of the charging sites. The stations will feature the European Combined Charging System (CCS) standard as well as an electrical transformer adapted to the delivery of direct current. The deployment of the stations involves installing up to 6 charging points at each station, wiring and their connection to the network.
Depending on the vehicles’ batteries, these stations offer up to 300 km of autonomy for 15 minutes’ charge. In France, SPIE has already installed around ten charging stations and is planning to install 34 charging stations by 2020.
“In our view, SPIE satisfies a number of essential requirements: a strong presence in Europe thanks to its network of subsidiaries, a proven track record and the expert skills needed to design and install an electric vehicle charging station”, notes IONITY COO Marcus Groll.
The pan-European IONITY network is a critical phase in the development of the electric vehicle market, particularly to foster long-distance journeys thanks to fast and easy charging that can be paid for online. Jérôme Vanhove, SPIE Group strategy, development and M&A director, is delighted with the new contract: “We are thrilled to see the trust we have received from IONITY. It demonstrates the value of our expertise in terms of e-mobility and electricity transmission and distribution, as well as the relevance of our pan-European positioning. SPIE has extensive experience in the design, installation, maintenance and operation of electric vehicle charging stations. The continuous growth of this market consolidates our position as a key player in the Smart City, interurban infrastructure and energy transition markets”.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.