E-Mobile Power Austria, in brief: EMPORA, the largest Austrian R&D project for electric mobility, which commenced in 2010 under the supervision of VERBUND, was successfully completed at the end of May 2013. The results of the project clearly demonstrate how mobility in Austria can contribute to the successful implementation of the energy turnaround: 22 project partners from industry and research have developed joint solutions ranging from automotive technology and infrastructure to comfortable user applications on the basis of 100 % renewable energy. The follow-up project EMPORA 2, which runs until March 2014, builds on these solutions and focuses on the areas of infrastructure and applications. The total project volume for both projects amounts to € 26 million. € 12 million of this amount is funded by the Climate and Energy Fund of the Federal Government.
EMPORA focuses on the user approach. Real and emotional inhibitions for the utilisation and large scale integration of electric mobility were identified and solutions have been developed in more than 20 work packages. The "range anxiety" of e-car users was met with smart routing systems, development solutions from automotive and infrastructure technology as well as suitable business models for the mobility requirements.
In the EMPORA project, innovative systems for data management, billing and customer management were re-linked and specially adapted for the application area electric mobility – with the aim of making the solutions as safe and as comfortable for customers at home, in the office or on the road. This led to the achievement of intelligent charging infrastructure and guidance systems that are capable of supplying e-vehicles with electricity from renewable energies and new data management and roaming solutions which interact perfectly.
These include the innovative, energy-efficient routing system which caters for the special requirements of e-car users. Based on the actual charge status of the e-car, the optimal route to the required destination will be selected ensuring that energy consumption is reduced to the greatest possible extent: current traffic and weather data and the profiles of alternative routes are taken into account. The EMPORA system displays the best located charging stations and therefore guarantees a smooth trip.
In the automotive technology area, activities focus on the development of solutions for the drive chain as well as charging and storage technologies. This can also lead to an improvement in the efficiency potential of the vehicle itself. The extension of the range is also guaranteed at a technological level through the Range Extender.
EMPORA therefore covers the entire value-added chain in the area of electric mobility. The EMPORA solutions were tested and brought into line with international developments through active networking and collaboration with other European R&D projects such as Green eMotion, regional initiatives (model regions) and related fields.
Wolfgang Pell, Head of the VERBUND Competence Center for Innovation: "The activities within the EMPORA project clearly show that e-mobility extends well beyond vehicles and electricity. Research and activities that focus on the successful networking of a wide variety of players and themes in the overall system were also conducted within the framework of the project". Pell explains: "In our capacity as Austria's leading electricity company we have already been promoting electric mobility for many years in numerous projects and programs. We also engage in cross-border activities, for example, within the framework of VIBRATe project, which links Vienna and Bratislava e-mobil. Electric mobility will be a part of the integrated energy services and must therefore be included in the development of new business models for this sector. A recent example is the establishment of the company E-Mobility Provider in 2012".
Theresia Vogel, Managing Director of the Austrian Climate and Energy Fund, is convinced: "Those who fund electric mobility must not only consider the vehicle but also a suitable infrastructure". An this is exactly where the technology development programme "Lighthouses of Electric Mobility" comes into play. "We fund large-scale, trend-setting projects which essentially have one goal: the speedy establishment of innovative technologies in the market which strengthen Austria's international position. Empora proved to be a great success in this respect and our other lighthouses also point in this direction".
Heike Barlag, Head of System & Research Siemens Deutschland: "Green eMotion is developing and testing solutions for the establishment of a European charging network for electric mobility together with the necessary IT systems to ensure that e-car users will be able to charge their vehicles throughout Europe.
The introduction of electric mobility could lead to substantial emission reductions in the transport sector. Austria's obligation under the Kyoto Protocol to reduce greenhouse gas emissions also necessitates the development of a sustainable mobility solution for the future.
The research project EMPORA (E-Mobile Power Austria) comprises two project parts (EMPORA und EMPORA 2) with a total project volume of 26 million euro and is the largest cooperative R&D project in Austria. A total of 22 partners are working on development solutions in the area of automotive technology, infrastructure, as well as applications and users. The entire value-added chain in the area of electric mobility will therefore be covered. In the area of automotive technology, products and solutions are being developed for the electrified drive chain together with charging and storage technologies. Intelligent charging infrastructure and guidance systems for supplying electric vehicles with electricity from renewable energy sources, as well as roaming solutions, are being developed in the infrastructure area. In the application and user area, service concepts for users of electric vehicles are being developed with the aim of overcoming entry barriers. The services for customers are rounded off by solutions for the integration of electric mobility in the transport system as a whole. (Project duration incl. EMPORA 2: January 2010 to March 2014). Both projects are funded by the Climate and Energy Fund in the total amount of € 12 million.