This text was initially printed by Sarah Wray on Cities At this time, the main information platform on city mobility and innovation, reaching a global viewers of metropolis leaders. For the newest updates comply with Cities At this time on Twitter, Fb, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube, or join Cities At this time Information.
The Metropolis of Peachtree Corners in Gwinnett County, Georgia has launched a brand new photo voltaic roadway system that produces vitality for an electrical car (EV) charging station at metropolis corridor.
Individually, the town has additionally revealed a brand new EV fast-charging plaza for as much as 16 autos. The plaza is the inaugural venture in Peachtree Corners’ new EV technique, which might function a mannequin for different cities.
The photo voltaic roadway is on a piece of an autonomous car check lane within the metropolis’s Curiosity Lab real-world testing setting and has been offered via a partnership with The Ray, a non-profit proving floor in Atlanta.
The brand new system ought to produce greater than 1,300 kilowatt-hours of electrical energy yearly for a Stage 2 EV charger at metropolis corridor, obtainable for gratis to EV motorists. The charger can be geared up with an vitality storage system for night-time charging.
Sooner or later, it might energy streetlights and different metropolis infrastructure, in addition to back-up for grid outages, the town mentioned.
The Wattway photo voltaic roadway panels are manufactured by French firm Colas Group in partnership with the French Nationwide Photo voltaic Vitality Institute.
Photo voltaic highway initiatives and trials have been launched in international locations corresponding to China and France however this set up represents the primary public highway deployment within the US.
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Brandon Branham, Chief Know-how Officer and Assistant Metropolis Supervisor of Peachtree Corners, advised Cities At this time: “This software can be the primary time that the photo voltaic roadway is getting used as the only real energy supply for an electrical car charging station, and never simply feeding the grid with supplemental energy.”
Early outcomes from pilots elsewhere have forged doubt on the efficacy of photo voltaic roadways. Following a three-year government-backed trial of Wattway’s panels alongside a kilometer-long check highway in Normandy, France, reviews final yr mentioned the know-how wasn’t economically viable or vitality environment friendly.
The Wattway panels have now been engineered to be extra sturdy and environment friendly, which the corporate says has resulted in a 21 p.c efficiency improve.
Wattway is working new trials in Normandy and likewise utilizing Curiosity Lab to check the newest model. Extra of the panels, that are glued on, might be added to sidewalks, bike lanes , and different surfaces within the future.
On the potential to energy different metropolis infrastructure, Branham mentioned: “This kind of scale has not been proved elsewhere and is what makes this check at Curiosity Lab so invaluable, as the whole lot from energy technology to set up and upkeep will probably be monitored and tweaked to realize scalability.”
Allie Kelly, Govt Director, The Ray, added: “Within the close to time period, city areas like Peachtree Corners is perhaps extra related and resilient for photo voltaic roadways deployment than highways and interstates. You may instantly pair the vitality technology with essential makes use of like charging docks for electrical bikes and scooters, and even lighting and sensible metropolis infrastructure. Conversely, photo voltaic roadways at scale on interstates [are] basically depending on a very good connection to the utility grid, which isn’t at all times current and will create important prices for so-called ‘interconnection’.”
Taking the EV initiative
In a separate initiative, Peachtree Corners has opened a brand new EV fast-charging plaza that may fast-charge as much as 16 autos concurrently. The deployment is the primary measure from the town’s new electrification plan, developed with e-mobility consultancy Hubject Consulting.
Hubject’s evaluation recognized that Peachtree Corners was basically “an EV fast-charging desert,” notably contemplating the rising electrical car possession in and across the metropolis. The corporate analyzed the town’s residential, enterprise, and retail format, in addition to visitors patterns and electrical capability to determine the perfect location for the charging plaza, which is located at Peachtree Corners City Heart.
Twelve Tesla V3 Superchargers at the moment are operational on the plaza in addition to 4 common charging stations. Two 350 kW chargers, and two 150 kW chargers, will go dwell within the new yr. By early January, the plaza will probably be able to charging all sorts of EV fashions. It will likely be one of many largest public charging amenities within the state of Georgia and the most important within the Metropolitan Atlanta space.
The chargers have been funded by the charging community suppliers.
Mannequin for electrification
Thomas Doran, Senior Director of Hubject North America, commented: “We hope that this venture with Peachtree Corners will encourage different municipalities nationwide to actively start planning their metropolis’s electrical car infrastructure, guaranteeing residents and companies are capable of simply electrify.”
“Greater than 55,000 autos a day will go by the brand new charging hub through the primary hall, reflecting our initiative’s immense impression on the bigger area, along with Peachtree Corners residents,” added Brian Johnson, Metropolis Supervisor of Peachtree Corners. “Not solely is that this a big financial driver for our metropolis, attracting retail and different associated actions, nevertheless it’s additionally serving as a mannequin for different communities throughout the nation to comply with as electrification continues to broaden.”
The partnership between Hubject and Peachtree Corners is ready to proceed into 2021 and actions will embody extra grant-funded electrification initiatives and different EV charging efforts.
“As one of many first real-world sensible cities within the nation, we pleasure ourselves in main the way in which with ‘firsts’ – from absolutely autonomous electrical shuttles driving alongside common autos, the world’s first fleet of teleoperated e-scooters deployed for residents to now the most important EV charging hub in your entire Metro Atlanta space,” mentioned Branham. “With the assistance of Hubject and our companions, we have been capable of create a sophisticated infrastructure plan that additional reinforces us as a mannequin for the American metropolis of the longer term – embracing the newest rising applied sciences to higher the lives of residents.”
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Revealed January 8, 2021 — 11:00 UTC