According to McKinsey, subsidies—for capital expenditure on chargers, installation, and power distribution, as well as ongoing costs for operation—can help draw EV charging to areas where it is most needed. Such subsidies can make it economically viable to build chargers in areas where long-term profitability can outweigh short-term costs. Some governments, such as New York City’s, are funding installation costs to build chargers in high-demand areas; others, such as Germany’s, are sponsoring an entire network to be operated by private companies. A successful effort will require modeling of demand, grid capacity, and other factors to determine priorities for investment.
As a result of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Dept. of Energy and Dept. of Transportation will establish a Joint Office of Energy and Transportation focused on deploying EV infrastructure, to collect input and guidance from industry leaders, manufacturers, workers, and others that will focus on building a convenient, reliable public charging network, filling gaps in rural, disadvantaged, and hard-to-reach locations.
The law includes $5 billion in formula funding for states with a goal to build a national charging network. 10% is set-aside each year for the Secretary to provide grants to States to help fill gaps in the network. The Law also provides $2.5 billion for communities and corridors through a competitive grant program that will support innovative approaches and ensure that charger deployment meets stated priorities such as supporting rural charging, improving local air quality, and increasing EV charging access in disadvantaged communities.
One problem is that the current network of over 100,000 public chargers operates with different plug types, payment options, data availability, and hardware hookups. The government is establishing a uniform approach that will provide greater convenience for customers and offer increased confidence for industry. Companies in the market are responding quickly to the program.
Siemens unveiled a new sustainable EV charging concept designed for electrifying fleets and high demand charging applications at scale. The new VersiCharge XL concept was created to electrify new or existing parking lots and building structures quickly and efficiently by using a modular, scalable design made in partnership with Nexii Building Solutions using their proprietary, sustainable building material with low carbon footprint. The solution, which resembles a modern-day fueling station, was developed in late 2021, and then installed in only three days at Siemens’ R&D hub eMobility and North American Headquarters for Electric Products.
This product was rapidly developed and co-patented with Nexii, a green construction technology company, and is the industry’s first EV charging system to house all necessary electrical infrastructure components that power EV chargers in an above-ground, enclosed, and low carbon structure. The above ground design requires minimal disruption to existing parking lots by eliminating costly, time-consuming, and substantial work and reduces on-site construction waste and environmental impact.
The VersiCharge XL concept leverages proven power distribution technologies used indoors at locations like data centers and industrial facilities and elevates them above-ground in a weather-resistant, outdoor enclosure. With its scaling and versatile capabilities, this concept is designed to be installed to charge large numbers of electric vehicles using either level 2 or level 3 EV chargers in outdoor environments ranging from small office building parking lots to last mile logistic hubs, and up to a stadium parking lot.
The prototype was created using Nexii’s material Nexiite, which has comparable properties to concrete with significantly less embodied carbon, as the vertical structure to support Siemens Sentron Busway systems that connect to power the EV chargers. The busway power distribution equipment is manufactured at Siemens 540-person manufacturing hub in Spartanburg, South Carolina.
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