E-mobile Power Austria, or: EMPORA, Europe's largest R&D project for electric mobility, which was launched in 2010 under the leadership of VERBUND, will be completed in March 2014. Concrete results concerning the four core issues are now at hand:
Electricity grid as the basis of a nationwide supply using infrastructure for charging,
Roaming as key for acceptance by users,
Vehicle-to-infrastructure communication for optimum information exchange and concrete offers to achieve ideal integration in the entire transport system.
The entire costs of the EMPORA project are 26 million euros and will be awarded a total of 12 million euros in funds from the Climate and Energy Funds of the federal government.
Federal minister for transport, innovation and technology, Doris Bures says: "Mobility should be affordable, efficient, safe and environmentally-friendly. E-mobility plays a large role in this. If we manage to bring the increased efficiency advantages of electric drives in practical and comfortable usage models to the street, then this will become a standard part of the transport system in future. This is the reason why we are investing so much in research and development. The beacon project EMPORA has shown that these investments are well worth it. In this way, there will also be an innovation for society born of this technological innovation."
"With our funding project, we are developing e-mobility to become part of a smart, multimodal transport system. The next step has already been laid out: With "CROSSING BORDERS", e-mobility transcends limits. The programme "e-mobility for all" demonstrates the potential of e-mobility within urban mobility systems and with the development of business models, we support e-mobility's speedy entry on the market", says a convinced Theresia Vogel, Managing Director of the Climate and Energy Funds.
"The EMPORA projects demonstrate that electric mobility goes beyond being just a switch from fossil fuels to electric motors" emphasises the head of the project Eva Maria Plunger, VERBUND AG. "We have taken two steps into the future with our project partners in order to already be one step ahead in implementing this project: The combination of perfected technology and innovative business models and corresponding services for customers make e-mobility truly sustainable for the future."
Electricity Grids are the Basis of a Nationwide Supply using Charging Infrastructure
In EMPORA, tests were carried out using simulations to see what effects a large-scale implementation of electric mobility would have on the electricity grid, as unlike conventionally powered vehicles, e-cars must be recharged after 150km. In order for this to occur as quickly as possible, there isn't only a need for perfected recharging technology, however, also suitable connections to electricity. EMPORA has shown that the medium voltage grid will not come under strain with the additional e-cars, in low voltage grids, however, smart charging control systems can considerably reduce the strain on the grid level.
Vehicle-to-Infrastructure Communication brings the User Information directly to their Car
Through vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, the user will receive information regarding the nearest charging station directly to their car. Thanks to the communication between the vehicle and the signalling systems, the manner of driving can be adapted in a way that saves most energy, which on the other hand extends the e-vehicle's range. Within the project, the use of cooperative systems especially for electric vehicles were developed and tested, with the help of international standards associations.
Roaming as the Key to Successful E-Mobility
Similar to the mobile communication field, it is also possible among e-mobility providers to offer roaming services. In this way it will be possible for customers to recharge using different providers and recharging infrastructure, without constantly having to take out a service contract for either. The providers, which will conclude agreements regarding roaming with each other or on an overarching platform, can offer their customers such services. Within the project, a suitable interface for such roaming services was defined and also demonstrated based on international developments.
E-Mobility as Part of the Entire Transport System
Electric mobility is a significant component within an entire range of environmentally-friendly mobility solutions, which are available to users. In the project, a co-modal router was developed and demonstrated, which in future will be able to suggest via smartphone all the different mobility offers which are available for any distance. This could mean public transport, car sharing offers or also simply a short walk. The user can decide which offer they choose.
Reducing Emissions in the Transport Sector By Using E-Mobility
By introducing electric mobility- using electricity from renewable sources- a considerable reduction in emissions can be achieved in the transport sector. Sustainable mobility solutions for the future have to be created, if nothing else, in order to comply with Austria's commitment to the Kyoto Protocol to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases. The e-mobility beacon project from the Climate and Energy Fund combines research and demonstration and are in this way an important leverage factor in quickly implementing electric mobility in Austria.