EV DAYS: ELECTRIC MOBILITY CONFERENCE
PHOTO: THE E DRIVE
EV Days were held in Novi Sad, Serbia and promoted different aspects of the new technologies, along with giving important advice about owning an electric vehicle.
As with any life topic, academic perspective and influence is very important, and that is why one of the panels had representatives from major universities, technical faculties and also ZF, a company that started their test and R&D centers in Serbia.
For ZF Serbia, scope is to figure out how the components work and also to become support for the supplier network. They are not focusing on production and energy storage, but the main technical challenge is still efficiency, with components that run at 800V. They will also look at software models and work on the reduction of development time.
All of the university representatives talked about dual education and how their respective faculties can provide knowledge about different aspects of electric mobility. One of the ideas that came up was the establishment of hydrogen strategy in Serbia.
Faculty of Mechanical Engineering in Belgrade presented their Formula Student team that has built an electric open-wheel racing car.
Charging Stations were the topic of another panel with ABB and Schneider Electric representatives talked about AC and DC units.
ABB Serbia presented the first fast charging station in 2010. Their representative stated that the number of requests for charging stations increased during the Covid-19 period. All of the charging stations with power greater than 100kW will fully charge your electric vehicle in about 30 minutes. Now, ABB is looking at expansion from 150kW to 350kW power. Next to battery capacity, they are also looking at the speed of charging.
Some of the challenges that they see ahead are the education of the market, as well as the administration. Cooperation with major car manufacturers is also important to make sure that the EV development is done so according to what the charging stations can provide, with the actual electric car becoming a portable energy source.
On a same note, representatives of Schneider Electric talked about a car being a "prosumer", which means when it is not running, it can be plugged into the power-grid and play the role of a energy source. With the car itself spending 90% of its life cycle standing still, it can join the power-grid as a sort of "two-way" charger. Schneider Electric develops slow charging stations, with the power of 24kW, that go by the name "EV link".
One of the challenges is to have a quality electrical energy in the power-grid, with Serbia having a passive grid. Something that they highlighted was to integrate renewable energy resources into the power-grid.
One of the examples that were given regarding charging stations being utilized to great effect is that in 2012 the complete Scandinavian highway network is covered with charging stations.
Last two panels that we have been able to cover talked about the life-cycle of an EV, as well as the software that goes into electric vehicles.
For most of the EVs, the car software is locked and only the engineer of the car's manufacturer can change or fix it. There is also Open-Source software for electric cars, which theoretically can be changed, but the problem then is that the warranty is lost, along with all security when it comes to factory settings.
One possibility that was proposed was to change the battery instead of charging it, but the problem there is that then the battery itself can get damaged or ignite. Life cycle of a battery is about 10 years in a car, after which it can be used further 10 years more in a solar panel or a wind generator, and then it can be recycled.
The car industry itself is in a reset phase with electric vehicles and the new technology. These cars are, next to being good because of savings, much easier to drive. One important aspect of it is refabricating, where Renault has plans to refabricate its EVs so that one life cycle lasts three.
One new interesting concept that was introduced was tele-driving: car can be driven from a simulator that is placed in a control center.
Many interesting subjects were covered and we certainly got a lot more knowledge and ideas, next to what we can get to know following electric racing championships. The conference itself was organized pretty well, with a lot of electric cars and tech on display, which you can see in the image gallery below.
To follow everything regarding this conference, visit the website.