Automotive

First "flat and flush" on-street EV charge points installed in London

First "flat and flush" on-stre...
The STEP trial will see 150 "flat and flush" EV charge points installed across the London Boroughs of Brent and Camden
The STEP trial will see 150 "flat and flush" EV charge points installed across the London Boroughs of Brent and Camden
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The STEP trial will see 150 "flat and flush" EV charge points installed across the London Boroughs of Brent and Camden
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The STEP trial will see 150 "flat and flush" EV charge points installed across the London Boroughs of Brent and Camden
When not in use, the Trojan charge points are almost flush with the pavement
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When not in use, the Trojan charge points are almost flush with the pavement
An array of 15 Trojan charge points installed along a street are connected to one 3-phase grid supply
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An array of 15 Trojan charge points installed along a street are connected to one 3-phase grid supply
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Scotland's Trojan Energy has developed an on-street EV charging solution that sits flush with the pavement until a user plugs in a special charging cable and tops up their vehicle. The first five Connectors have been installed in Mortimer Road in the London Borough of Brent, ahead of a full trial of 150 charge points across Brent and Camden later this year.

Part of a three-year Subsurface Technology for Electric Pathways – or STEP – project funded by the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles and delivered with the help of Innovate UK, the flat and flush charging system starts with a series of Trojan Connectors installed near the edge of the pavement, which lie flush with the surface so have little to no visual impact when not in use, and don't obstruct pedestrians.

When not in use, the Trojan charge points are almost flush with the pavement
When not in use, the Trojan charge points are almost flush with the pavement

An array of 15 Connectors are hooked up to a cloud-connected power cabinet that's connected to a 3-phase grid supply, and can be installed up to 100 meters (328 ft) away from the farthest flat and flush Connector.

The service user is supplied with a Trojan Lance, which looks like a kind of air pump and has a charging cable running from it. The Lance is inserted into the Connector, and the plug end is connected to the EV's charge port. The Connector is not "live" until a connection is established with the EV.

The company says that charging rates of 7 kW and 22 kW are supported, with overnight smart charging available "at the lowest possible cost." Each Lance is linked to a specific user account. During the trial, electricity will be charged at 25p (about 35 US cents) per kWh at up to 7.4 kW, or 30p (42 US cents) per kWh for 22.1-kW fast charging.

The full public trial is due to run from September this year to March 2022, and will see six streets in Brent get 15 charge points each, with four more streets in Camden also getting 15 each. Around 140 EV drivers have already signed up to take part, and others in the area are encouraged to do so via the Trojan website (though folks who don't currently drive an EV can also sign up to join the trial).

An array of 15 Trojan charge points installed along a street are connected to one 3-phase grid supply
An array of 15 Trojan charge points installed along a street are connected to one 3-phase grid supply

"This project is a great example of how technology is being used to solve a real-world problem to ensure that our EV infrastructure fits in seamlessly in our local towns and cities," said the UK's Transport Minister, Rachel Maclean. "This is crucial as we build back greener and encourage more people to make the switch, which is why I’m delighted this government is backing its delivery."

The video below has more on the project.

EV Charging: Our Story

Source: Trojan Energy

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14 comments
14 comments
paul314
So what are the antitheft devices on those adaptors? Free charging on someone else's dime seems pretty attractive.
Wombat56
This thing looks to me like a major trip-and-fall hazard. Tough luck if you're sight impaired, or even if you're not. It would be easy to be looking ahead at other pedestrians or street signs and run knee-first into one of these things, The lances should be hi-viz orange at a minimum and the empty socket in the footpath is labeled at only ALMOST flush with the pavement.
Robt
A light dusting of snow will cover/hide it from someone walking; but it protrudes enough to be a hazard
Michael son of Lester
So, what's the plan B for when the city has a snow event and these charging ports are frozen solid?
fen
Looks a nightmare for blind people. One min it is there the next its gone, wires around the place to trip them. If the lunatics really think billions of batteries and huge electricity supply is the answer, thent hey should make the connection flush with the side of the kerb instead
sally
Great and necessary concept considering the lack of off road space for many households, my only immediate questions would be:
How does one ensure one is available when you need it, how do you stop ordinary drivers using the space even if it’s outside your door or reserved for users? Presently it is not unknown for idiotic ICE drivers deliberately blocking re garage points even in places like Supermarkets.
Secondly like Paul, having just read how two of the most common house chargers in the UK can, or at least were, hackable till recent software updates what is the protection from hacking like on these?
JoeAS
I wonder why they decided to put it in the sidewalk rather than in the street. The car is in the street. Pedestrians are on the sidewalk. It's definitely a trip hazard when in use and takes up space on the sidewalk that has to be avoided. Perhaps having these being so visible is a plus in terms of promoting it, compared to being mostly out of sight? A noticeable promotional marker/sign on the sidewalk could achieve that. Even a much taller eye level charging connector would make it be less of a trip hazard.
Grunchy
Have a nice "trip," see you next "fall."
Robert Lehmert
Tough in the snow.
Bricorn
There are tall streetlights all along these streets, why not just attach the charging point to those? Snow-proof, easier to see, not a trip hazard........
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