Volkswagen Unveils a Robotic Mobile EV Charging Concept
【Summary】German automaker Volkswagen offered a glimpse into the future by unveiling a visionary electric vehicle charging robot concept that can turn any parking space into an electric vehicle charging station.
German automaker Volkswagen offered a glimpse into the future by unveiling a visionary electric vehicle charging robot concept that can turn any ordinary parking space into an electric vehicle charging station.
The technology eliminates the need for electric vehicle drivers to find a dedicated EV charging spot to charge their vehicle and is a look at how EV chargers might work in the future.
The mobile charging robot does all of the work automatically and navigates to the electric vehicle's location completely autonomously. The robot can also communicate with the vehicle using Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) technology.
"It's a visionary prototype, which can be made into reality quite quickly, if the general conditions are right." said Mark Möller, Head of Development at Volkswagen Group Components.
The entire setup is compact and flexible, according to Volkswagen. The prototype consists of a self-driving robot, as well portable energy storage devices called "battery wagons." Each battery wagon is equipped with an energy content of around 25 kWh.
The robot delivers a battery wagon to the vehicle's location, with enough juice to charge it. The mobile energy storage device stays with the vehicle during the whole charging process, freeing up the robot to charge other vehicles.
A charging robot can move several battery wagons at the same time. With its integrated charging electronics, the energy storage device allows for DC quick charging with up to 50 kW on the vehicle.
The autonomous EV charging robot is fitted with a suite of cameras, lidar and radar. These systems allow the robot to move freely in the parking area, navigating around any obstacles in its path.
Depending on the size of the parking area or the underground car park, several charging robots can be employed simultaneously so that several vehicles can be attended to.
Once a driver sets up the robotic charging feature via app or V2X communication, the mobile robot will drive itself to where the vehicle is parked, open the charging port cover and connect the charging cable.
Once charging is completed, the robot disconnects the cable from the vehicle and collects the energy storage device and brings it back to the charging station. The entire charging process requires no human interaction.
The futuristic charging concept may one day be used in underground parking garages managed parking lots, along highway rest stops, or at large stadium events to charge electric vehicle automatically. Drivers will have the choice to park in any available space.
"The mobile charging robot will spark a revolution when it comes to charging in different parking facilities. With this, we are making almost every car park electric, without any complex individual infrastructural measures." said Möller.
For operators of different parking facilities the robotic chargers are a quick and easy solution to electrify every parking space. The compact design of the charging robot is perfectly suited for use in restricted parking areas, such as underground car parks where it's difficult to install bulky EV chargers.
"This approach has enormous economic potential." said Möller. "Even the well-known problem of a charging station being blocked by another vehicle will no longer exist with our concept. You simply choose any parking space as usual. You can leave the rest to our electronic helper."
A possible date for the market launch of the charging robot has not been set, but Volkswagen continues to work on additional EV charging solutions as the automaker electrifies its model lineup.
Volkswagen is installing a total of 36,000 charging points throughout Europe over the next five years, A large number of these EV charging sites will be open to the public.
Like rival Tesla has done with its home charger, Volkswagen is also launching its own wallbox for home charging called the "ID.Charger." In addition, as part of Volkswagen's joint venture IONITY, the automaker is installing 400 fast-charging parks on major European highways.
Originally hailing from New Jersey, Eric is a automotive & technology reporter covering the high-tech industry here in Silicon Valley. He has over 15 years of automotive experience and a bachelors degree in computer science. These skills, combined with technical writing and news reporting, allows him to fully understand and identify new and innovative technologies in the auto industry and beyond. He has worked at Uber on self-driving cars and as a technical writer, helping people to understand and work with technology.
Baidu CEO Believes That SAE Level-4 Autonomous Driving Systems Will the First to Enter Commercial Use After L2, Skipping Over L3
Volvo’s Electric Vehicle Brand Polestar Reports $1 Billion in Revenue in the First Half of 2022, Adds 6 New Global Markets
Toyota is Investing an Additional $2.5 Billion to Expand its North Carolina Factory to Boost EV Battery Production
Nexar Releases its ‘Driver Behavioral Map Data’ That Can Help Autonomous Vehicles Operate More Like Human Drivers
Honda and LG Energy Solutions to Build a $4.4 Billion Joint Venture EV Battery Plant in the U.S.
Mercedes-Benz Begins Production of the Highly Anticipated EQS Electric SUV in Alabama
Toyota is Working With the U.S. Dept of Energy to Advance ‘Megawatt-Scale’ Fuel Cell Powered Stationary Energy Generators
Mercedes-Benz Signs MoU With the Government of Canada to Source the Raw Materials for Electric Vehicle Batteries
- Consumer Reports Survey Finds Roughly 28% of Respondents Don't Want to Buy an EV
- Volvo’s Brand Polestar Confirms That the Polestar 6 Electric Roadster Will Enter Production and Launch in 2026
- Cadillac Announces Pricing For 2023 Lyriq Electric SUV, Open Order Books
- Tesla Vehicles Operating in Autopilot Mode Involved in 273 Crashes in Under a Year, the NHTSA Reports
- Hyundai Motor Group is Investing $10 Billion in Advanced Mobility Technologies in the U.S. by 2025
- Baidu CEO Believes That SAE Level-4 Autonomous Driving Systems Will the First to Enter Commercial Use After L2, Skipping Over L3
- Ford Motor Co is Cutting 3,000 Jobs as it Transitions to Electric Vehicles, Software and Digital Services
- Qualcomm and its Industry Partners Demonstrate C-V2X Technology in Georgia That Ensures School Buses and Fire Trucks Never Get Stuck at Red Lights
- Major Tesla Investor Urges the Electric Automaker to Issue Stock Buyback After Share Price Plummets 30% Since April
- Tesla Shutters its San Mateo, CA Office, Lays Off Roughly 200 Autopilot Staff Without Notice