FeAsiBility analysis and development of on-Road chargIng solutions for future electric vehiCles
FABRIC addressed the technological feasibility, economic viability and social and environmental impact of dynamic on-road charging of electric vehicles. The main project objectives were to evaluate the performance of on-road wireless prototypes in real driving conditions; assess the impact on the transport infrastructure and on the electricity network from the wide introduction of such systems; assess the impact on the vehicle supply chain and on the environment, and derive recommendations for large-scale deployment.
To achieve its objectives, the FABRIC project consortium, which consists of 24 partners from 9 EU countries, developed three prototype wireless charging solutions and respective supporting ICT solutions which have been demonstrated in France and Italy. The first Wireless Power Transfer solution was based on a market available static wireless charging system which was modified to meet the requirements of dynamic on-road charging. Several Base Area Network units were installed in a trench at the VEDECOM research Institute test site, located in Satory near Versailles, and two vehicles supplied by RENAULT Group were equipped with the corresponding vehicle pads.
The other more research-oriented Wireless Power Transfer solutions were developed and demonstrated at the Italian test site of the project, located in Susa near Turin. A series of 50 multi-winding transmitter coils were installed on a 100m road segment, and 25 simple single turn transmitter coils were installed on a 50m road segment. Support applications were also developed to optimise driving behaviour and system performance, which included an on-board unit to provide information about the charging process to the driver, an application to support the driver in keeping a steady position above the primary charging unit on the road, and an application to control the energy flow taking into consideration the energy availability.
All three solutions were extensively tested under different operating conditions.
In addition, feasibility studies were conducted into future Electric Road Systems (ERS), also taking into consideration the information and data collected from two additional ERS designs intended for Swedish highway traffic, capable of delivering power for heavy-duty traffic. One was a conductive ERS developed by Volvo-Alstom, and the other one was a This project had received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no 605405. The content of this press release reflects only the authors’ view, and the European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains“. Bombardier-Scania Primove inductive power transfer solution.
The project assessment activities led to the following conclusions:
- Dynamic wireless power transfer appears feasible ERS in the medium-term for the urban deployment of buses and long-distance freight corridors. Saving battery weight for heavy vehicles could offset the monetary and environmental costs of the infrastructure required. Final cost-benefit assessments, as well as feasibility for other scenarios, will be dependent on other technological developments in electro-mobility.
- Implementation of ERS is technically feasible in current road design and with currently available materials. Selection of the appropriate construction method should be made considering the existing infrastructure, the preferences of the road owner, the contextual use estimations, and the future maintenance and whole lifecycle costs.
- Careful planning and gradual ERS deployment are needed. ERS construction procedures must meet current highway design and construction specifications. Any departures from these standards should clearly demonstrate that the structural integrity and service life of the road remains unaffected.
- Travel patterns may change due to ERS, and this is highly dependent on the regional context. For urban buses and long-distance freight corridors, this is not expected to lead to significant issues.
I-Sense Group was the project coordinator and the technical manager of FABRIC. It was also responsible for quality assurance and dissemination activities. Moreover, I-SENSE was also responsible for the architecture definition and security implementation, contributing to the integration with smart grids and leads the systems’ integration and testing activities.