Automotive

Mini demos street lights that also charge your car

Mini demos street lights that ...
By building charging points into street lights, it would be possible to integrate a charging network into the existing urban landscape
By building charging points into street lights, it would be possible to integrate a charging network into the existing urban landscape
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By building charging points into street lights, it would be possible to integrate a charging network into the existing urban landscape
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By building charging points into street lights, it would be possible to integrate a charging network into the existing urban landscape

Mini is demonstrating a new technology that would allow electric vehicle (EV) drivers to charge their vehicles from street lights. The Light and Charge system would also provide efficient LED lighting. The system is being showcased the carmaker's plant in Oxford, UK, as part of Low Carbon Oxford Week.

By building charging points into street lights, it would be possible to integrate a charging network into the existing urban landscape rather than only at existing fuel stations. Not only do street lights typically run along the side of roads, but they are already connected to mains electricity. Furthermore, the charge points can be attached to existing street lighting infrastructure.

This approach could be used to substantially increase the number of public charging stations and has the potential to provide more charging points than there are fuel pumps currently available. The Light and Charge points could be set up at any location where there is a street light (or where one can be installed) and where parking is available.

The units themselves employ a modular LED design. They are more energy-efficient than conventional street lighting and up to four LED modules can be used when required, for example on busy main roads or motorways. Mini says one or two modules will suffice for quieter side streets and residential areas.

To use the Light and Charge points, EV drivers need only connects their vehicle to a standard connector on the street light using a standard charging cable. A control panel on the light allows users to operate the charging unit with the swipe of a card regardless of vehicle model.

Low Carbon Oxford Week runs from June 13-21.

Source: Mini

4 comments
Gene Preston
The amount of power hitting the car would be miniscule. Its not worth it.
Stephen N Russell
Boost power & expand for all EV types: RVs, trucks & cars & buses alone ID sensor on lamp when charging said car/s below Must have citywide, worldwide
Mark Salamon
A very promising development. Here in the United States, however, it would probably be wise to make these devices as vandal-proof as possible, and also give them a proprietary electrical interface for charging vehicles only. Without those safeguards, scavenging could become a major problem.
pmshah
@Gene
If you look closely there is s cable running from the car to some kind of a box on the light pole.
What I was wondering about is would the cables deployed for street lights be ale to supply enough current without overloading ? One might have to consider possible fire hazard in this situation.