This week, electric vehicle charging solutions provider EV Connect won a US$1.8m contract with the California Energy Commission.Under the contract, EV Connect will participate in the completion of key routes of the West Coast Electric Highway.
The highway is a network of EV fast-charging stations being developed along the Interstate-5 (I-5) in the US stretching from the Canadian to Mexican border.
In a press statement, EV Connect said it will establish EV fast charging stations in the California 99 and Interstate 5 highways.
The EV solutions provider will install one or two 5Okw Dual-Standard DC Fast Chargers in each highway.
The chargers will feature an SAE Combo and CHAdeMO connector.
A single 7.2KW dual-head level 2 charger equipped with standard J1772 connectors will also be established in either one of the two highways.
In addition, EV Connect will provide management of the charging ecosystem which includes the charging stations, host locations, electric utility interaction and the driver experience.
Jordan Ramer, EV Connect CEO said: “The West Coast Electric Highway is an important component in the rapidly increasing adoption of electric vehicles within North America, particularly for inter-city travel.”
Altogether, the CEC awarded a total of $8.8 million in grants to complete the California portion of the Highway.
EV fast charging in North America
In other EV charging news, late February Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) entered into partnership with global distributed energy solutions provider Greenlots for rollout of a demand response pilot.
In a press statement, HECO said the collaboration aims to test electric vehicle (EV) charging and energy storage interoperability.
Under the project, Greenlots agreed to provide its vehicle-grid integration technology ‘SKY Smart Charging’ for integration in the power utility’s EV charger in West Oahu, Hawaii.
HECO said the project, falling under the Hawaiian Electric Power Research institute, aims to increase adoption of EVs through establishment of adequate supporting infrastructure and technologies.
Jim Alberts, HECO's senior vice president for customer service said: "With our state's 100-percent renewable portfolio goals, we are working to support the build out of electric vehicle charging infrastructure to provide EV drivers with range confidence."
The integration will allow storage of power generated from renewable sources during off-peak periods, for utilization during peak use times.
In addition, the solution permits EV users to locate fast charge stations as well as pay their charging bills online using the Greenlots mobile app.
HECO also announced it plans to integrate SKYSmart at its fifth fast charge station set to be developed this March.
SKYSmart provides EV users an 80% charge within 30 minutes.
Brett Hauser, CEO of Greenlots reiterated: "Increasingly, utilities are looking toward open standards-based charging to be utilized in energy management strategies."