HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO CHARGE A CARGO EV?
The electric vehicle market is displacing the conventional vehicle market in a big way. Though, there are still a few challenges that the sector needs to navigate efficiently before EVs can become the absolute norm, they are well on our way there.
One barrier to the adoption of cargo EVs the range anxiety faced by the owners/drivers-that is concern regarding the distance the electric vehicle can run on a single charge. On an average, an EV can be charged within 30 minutes to 12 hours depending on the size of the battery and the speed of the charging point.
Also, the time taken to refuel an EV is more as compared to a conventional vehicle that refills in a few minutes. To counter this many manufacturers and startups are now coming up with solutions that can tackle these challenges efficiently.
New, cutting-edge innovation is changing things constantly. Companies like Altigreen promise an unprecedented range of 153 kms per charge. In fact Altigreen’s Low Deck EV recently covered a distance of 147.7 km between Mysuru and Bengaluru on a single charge, with 24% charge remaining, putting all such anxieties to rest.
For an EV cargo, 3-4 hours of charging time means no business during these hours. This downtime can be saved by rapid charging. Altigreen in partnership with Exponent Energy, a Bengaluru-based startup have come up with a battery pack and a charging station that together can charge an EV within 15 minutes from 0 to 100%.
Battery swapping allows EV owners to replace discharged batteries with charged ones at swap stations. This results in less downtime for the vehicle as it requires a few minutes to swap batteries as compared to hours of charging time. There has been a lot of buzz around the incorporation of this innovative in India. Niti Aayog released a draft policy in April 2022 on battery swaps for two- and three-wheelers and according to the Niti Ayog website, the objectives of this initiative are to ease EV adoption. They want to promote swapping of batteries with Advanced Chemistry Cell (ACC) batteries to decouple battery costs from the upfront costs; offer flexibility to EV users by promoting the development of battery swapping as an alternative to charging facilities; leverage policy and regulatory levers to de-risk the battery swapping ecosystem; to unlock access to competitive financing; encourage partnerships among battery providers, battery OEMs and other relevant partners such insurance/financing, thereby encouraging the formation of ecosystems capable of delivering integrated services to end users and promote better lifecycle management of batteries. Buoyed by this development and the government’s initiatives, there has been news about Sun Mobility partnering with Amazon India to expand the deployment of EVS equipped with battery swapping technology for logistics and delivery service.
Top-up charging is another option that can be practiced to cut down on the downtime of the vehicle. As per Pod Point’s (a UK provider of electric vehicle charging station) EV charging guide, “Instead of letting the battery run empty and waiting while it fully charges, drivers can make use of the time their vehicle is parked to keep the battery topped up. Combining a daytime top-up charging with overnight charging at home is an effective way to keep your EV charged and ready to go.” The top-up charging can be done at home, in gyms, supermarkets, workplaces, or wherever there is a charging point available. As an additional tip, the website mentions, “Drivers needn’t worry about how long it takes to charge from empty to full. It’s more useful for them to know how much range they’ll get when they plug in to top-up.”
Along with the increasing demand for EVs, the charging infrastructure is making headway with each passing day and every new innovation. Technological advancement in batteries is resulting in increased capacities and service life of batteries too. Moreover, with the rate at which auto companies and governments are working to make recharging faster, more efficient, and easily accessible, battery charging woes will soon be a thing of the past and 3-wheeler EVs will be all charged to change the face of last mile transportation in India.
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