Report shapes the future of electric transport globally

Groundbreaking ideas that will shape the future of electric vehicles (EVs) across the world have been unveiled today at The Core in Newcastle’s Science Central.

Urban Foresight, which is based at The Core, has worked with global partners to look at the 50 most innovative developments in EVs.

Today the company released ‘EV City Casebook 50 Big Ideas’ which profiles the best ideas on how global targets can be met. This includes the UK government’s vision that from 2040 every new car will be an ultra low emission vehicle and that there will be an effectively decarbonised fleet by 2050.

The report highlights issues around how EVs can make the transition from niche-market to mainstream consumers featuring ideas such as ‘EV Vending Machines’ as seen in Hangzhou, China, through to Smart Fleet Management software developed by Gateshead’s Route Monkey.

David Beeton, Director at Urban Foresight, said: “This document profiles 50 examples of transformative policies, projects, technologies and business models that have been implemented in 23 countries across six continents.

“We put out a call for submissions earlier this year which saw over 150 nominations from across the world, spanning the full spectrum of applications related to electric mobility.

“A panel of experts from national governments and international NGOs met in Copenhagen, Denmark, in May 2014 to identify the measures that offered the greatest potential. This led to the 50 Big Ideas which highlights areas of considerable promise for the future of electric mobility.”

The report was produced by Urban Foresight, the Clean Energy Ministerial’s Electric Vehicles Initiative (EVI) and the international Energy Agency’s Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Implementing Agreement (IA-HEV).

Ideas covered in the document include Wireless Charging, which takes place in Gumi, South Korea. In the city a seven-and-a-half mile stretch of inner-city road has been fitted with a wireless charging system to power an all-electric bus. The Online Electric Vehicle system (OLEV) consists of electrical cables buried under the road which create magnetic fields picked up by the bus and converted into electricity.

Software company Route Monkey, with prominent offices based in Gateshead, has developed a tool to help Fleet Managers use EVs for more cost-effective fleet management. The company’s sophisticated algorithm calculates the optimum deployment of EVs, helping Fleet Managers to define how EVs will best work for them and demonstrating the cost and emissions savings they can expect.

Hangzhou, China, is home to the world’s first EV vending machines. Kandi Machines are automated multi-storey vehicle garages and part of a city-wide car-sharing scheme that allows users to hire a fully-charged electric vehicle at the push of a button. Users can hire an ultracompact EV for around $3 an hour and drop it off at another Kandi station near their destination.

Urban Foresight moved to The Core in November of this year after looking at various locations across the UK.

Dr Beeton said: “We chose to base ourselves at The Core as much of our business is focussed on the smart and sustainable transformation of cities, communities, businesses and industry.

“There is nowhere more suitable in the country for us to be based than at The Core on Newcastle’s Science Central which will itself set a standard for smart, sustainable city-centre living.”

Lisa Tolan, Centre Manager for The Core, said: “Urban Foresight is an ideal match for The Core. Through research, strategy and projects, the company helps public and private sector organizations to shape a brighter future.

“They are spearheading the kind of pioneering technologies and knowledge exchange that the building is all about.”

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