XXL power bank for your electric car: The infrastructure for charging electric cars is now much better than it used to be, but there is still room for improvement. For those who don’t have their own garage with a wallbox, the only alternative for a long time was charging at electric charging stations. If the British company ZipCharge has its way, that will soon change, as portable batteries will be available to borrow at their planned “GoHub” stations.
ZipCharge Go – Suitcase size wheeled batteries
The portable charging stations called “ZipCharge Go” were announced back in November 2021 at COP26. To put it bluntly, these are a kind of power bank for electric cars. The Gos are batteries on wheels the size of suitcases and can thus be easily stowed in the trunk. They can be recharged from a normal household socket.
One Go stores between four and 8 kWh and is said to be able to recharge a range of 30 to 40 kilometers. The built-in inverter also makes it possible to not only draw power from the socket, but also feed it back into the grid.
There is also a mobile phone interface via app, which is supposed to provide tips on the best time to charge, among other things.
So far, the Go can only be pre-ordered, but it is expected to be delivered from the fourth quarter of 2022.
GoHub stations with green power thanks to solar and wind
But ZipCharge already has further plans. On April 22, 2022, “Earth Day,” they unveiled their new project GoHub, a flexible solution for charging electric cars. GoHub stations provide charged ZipCharge Gos that can be returned to the next station after charging.
The stations can be found conveniently using the app, and ZipCharge Gos can also be reserved via the app.
Each GoHub can be adapted to the location and offers space for five to ten Go Powerbanks, depending on the variant. In addition, technologies for collecting rainwater, WLAN hotspots and charging stations for mobile devices, e-scooters and electric bicycles can be integrated.
The GoHubs draw their charging power from renewable energy sources through rooftop solar panels and wind turbines. Excess electricity flows into the power grid.
ZipCharges targeted goal: 100,000 GoHubs by 2030
Users have several options to choose from after installing the GoHubs. Either they can purchase their own ZipCharge Go or pay a monthly fee via an Energy-as-a-Service (EaaS) plan to rent one of the power banks from the nearest GoHub station as needed.
ZipCharges’ goals for the GoHub stations are substantial. By 2030, the company aims to operate 100,000 stations worldwide. Apparently, in fact, the GoHubs are supposed to be cheaper and faster to install than ordinary electric charging stations.
The first hubs are scheduled to be installed in the UK in 2023.