Israeli company ElectReon, the developer of a wireless electrification system to charge electric vehicles in full motion on smart roads, and Germany energy company EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg AG (EnBW) announced on Sunday that they have signed an agreement to build the first wireless electric road system (ERS) in Germany.
The first stage of this wireless electric road project is scheduled to be commissioned by the end of the year, ElectReon said. This will be the third electric road project for the Israeli startup, which also has similar projects in Tel Aviv and Sweden.
Founded in 2013, ElectReon developed a system to charge vehicles while in full motion using copper coils placed under the middle lane of the road. The coils would be covered by the pavement and powered by an underground system with charging performed by a receiver or multiple receivers installed under the car.
The company went public in late 2017. Last month, it raised $50 million in an equity offering to investors. A number of institutional investors took part, including Migdal, Psagot, Mor, and Excellence, as well as leading hedge funds Alpha, Safra, and Sphera. Israeli company Afcon Holdings, a leading player in the infrastructure and construction sector in Israel, also participated in the offering.
ElectReon signed a memorandum of understanding with EnBW in December 2019 to demonstrate its technology to German decision-makers. It is one of Germany’s largest energy companies and a major electric mobility provider with a charging network that spans Germany, Austria, and Switzerland with more than 30,000 charging points.
The wireless ERS with ElectReon will power a bus line that will connect the new EnBW training center in Karlsruhe’s Rhine harbor to the local public transport system. EnBW wants to test the suitability for everyday use of the charging technology with this project. It will initially be set up on the EnBW premises of the training center. The charging coils will later be deployed on the adjacent public road.
The first road works on the bus route will begin as early as August 2020. Early next year, part of the Fettweisstraße adjacent to the site will also be equipped with inductive charging coils, the parties said.
ElectReon will provide EnBW with dynamic and static wireless ERS, an electric bus equipped with DWPT receivers and installation, operation, and maintenance services. ENBW will participate in the overall project management, provide the grid connections, engage in monitoring and evaluating the system and be responsible for communicating with the relevant local authorities.
“We are very excited to see EnBW’s great commitment and support for advancing innovative technologies that can increase the penetration of electric mobility to Germany and globally,” said ElectReon CEO Oren Ezer. “Germany is a global leader in prompting climate-related solutions and we believe that this project will be a great entry point for the ElectReon’s solution to the German market.”
“The construction of the charging track for electric buses is intended to show us what role wireless charging can play in future offers for our customers, as a sustainable infrastructure provider, it is also important for us to test new technologies that will allow us to make even better use of electricity for mobility and reduce emissions,” said Wolfram Münch, EnBW’s head of research and development.