Automotive

Fuel Station of the Future puts paid to the pumps

The 12-month collaboration envisages smart streets on which the cars, houses, road and grid are all connected
The 12-month collaboration envisages smart streets on which the cars, houses, road and grid are all connected
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It is hoped that fuel stations and many car-parks are able to be replaced with green spaces
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It is hoped that fuel stations and many car-parks are able to be replaced with green spaces
The 12-month collaboration envisages smart streets on which the cars, houses, road and grid are all connected
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The 12-month collaboration envisages smart streets on which the cars, houses, road and grid are all connected
Cars could be charged using renewable energy from people's homes or could feed energy back into homes
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Cars could be charged using renewable energy from people's homes or could feed energy back into homes
In-road wireless charging technology could eliminate the need for plug-in charging
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In-road wireless charging technology could eliminate the need for plug-in charging
Car owners could set their vehicle to self-charge
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Car owners could set their vehicle to self-charge
Cars could autonomously navigate to wireless on-street charging bays, charge themselves and then leave the bay and re-park while their owners sleep
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Cars could autonomously navigate to wireless on-street charging bays, charge themselves and then leave the bay and re-park while their owners sleep
Nissan and Foster + Partners' vision sees a combination of vehicle-to-grid, battery storage, wireless charging, autonomous drive and over-the-air connectivity technologies
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Nissan and Foster + Partners' vision sees a combination of vehicle-to-grid, battery storage, wireless charging, autonomous drive and over-the-air connectivity technologies
Cars could be driven into offices and used to power them
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Cars could be driven into offices and used to power them
The firms envisage a world in which distributed clean energy production is so abundant that it becomes a free commodity shared across cities
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The firms envisage a world in which distributed clean energy production is so abundant that it becomes a free commodity shared across cities

Last year, Nissan and Foster + Partners announced a joint brain trust to consider the Fuel Station of the Future. A vision has now been unveiled in which the Fuel Station of the Future is conceived as the home, the street, the city and indeed the car itself – but not, ironically, as a fuel station.

Nissan and Foster + Partners' "fully connected vision of the future of mobility" is based on the belief that the future of vehicles is electric. It sees vehicle-to-grid, battery storage, wireless charging, autonomous drive and over-the-air connectivity technologies combining to change not only how cars are refuelled, but how energy is used and distributed across major cities.

The move towards electric vehicles (EVs) is already creating a need for a new refuelling network. Such a network, says co-head of design at Foster + Partners David Nelson, can be sustainable, innovative and can do more than simply refuel cars.

"Integrating zero emission technologies into the built environment is vital in creating smarter, more sustainable cities," says Nelson. "That commitment must extend far beyond the car – it must sit at the heart of everything we do."

Nissan and Foster + Partners' vision sees a combination of vehicle-to-grid, battery storage, wireless charging, autonomous drive and over-the-air connectivity technologies
Nissan and Foster + Partners' vision sees a combination of vehicle-to-grid, battery storage, wireless charging, autonomous drive and over-the-air connectivity technologies

The results of the 12-month collaboration envisage smart streets on which the cars, houses, road and grid are all connected. Cars are charged using renewable energy from people's homes or, using technologies that are being developed now, autonomously navigate to wireless on-street charging bays, charge themselves and then leave the bay and re-park while their owners sleep.

The vehicle is itself seen as a power hub, able to feed energy back into houses, the grid, other vehicles or devices. This use of cars for energy storage, coupled with energy storage capabilities installed in homes, would help to minimize the amount of renewable energy that goes waste.

Nissan and Foster + Partners also posit that the move towards zero emissions technology in cars could conceivably change what is possible in how we use them. The firms suggest, outlandishly but by way of example, that cars could be driven into offices and used as power sources, or simply that such newly feasible proximity would allow for automated parking systems within offices to whisk cars away to be stored and charged upstairs or elsewhere in a building until the end of the day.

Taking their vision to the Nth degree, the firms see a world in which distributed clean energy production is so abundant that it becomes a free commodity shared across cities, with fuel stations and many car-parks able to be replaced with green spaces.

Nissan and Foster + Partners' vision is being displayed at the Geneva Motor Show.

The video below outlines the concept.

Sources: Nissan, Foster + Partners

Nissan introduces the Fuel Station of the Future

4 comments
gizmowiz
It's pretty difficult to imagine Nissan doing much on the energy in the home using a Leaf as a storage medium since it has NEVER even bothered to import it's technology that it's using in Japan already with it's Leaf to Home Smart battery storage. I'll stick with Tesla which cares about Americans a lot more than Nissan does. Nissan only cares about profit and it's own Japanese people.
Daishi
The video is a bit pie in the sky (and likely intentionally so) but some of the things have merit. We will probably see parking spaces that support wireless charging before long. The idea of bringing your car into your office with you and having it power your office takes a bit of a dive off the deep end though. We aren't going to pull major businesses off the grid any time soon and solar growth will mean an abundance of daylight power. If anything it makes sense to charge them while parked at the office to help lower the burden on the grid between 6-10 PM as the sun sets just before peak demand.
Douglas Bennett Rogers
Energy efficient vehicles and houses are a receding target for most people.
Stephen N Russell
Lisc for apts, condoes alone for use. Nice for suburban homes too Be huge for hi rise condoes alone.