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Keen to boost e-mobility, IIT-D alumni develop fast charging station for EVs

Libza Mannan
23rd Dec 2017
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The charger, developed by EVI Technologies, is compatible with Mahindra Reva e20 and other electric vehicles, and can power up a vehicle in less than 80 minutes.

In a bid to reduce carbon emissions, the Indian Government earlier announced ambitious plans to usher in an all-electric fleet - both personal and commercial - on India’s roads by 2030.

As NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant pointed out, “The per capita usage of cars in India is very low; it is only 20 per thousand whereas in America it is 800 per thousand. So moving from internal combustion to electric (zero emission) vehicles would be far easier.”

This clearly indicates the huge potential of the electric vehicle segment. No wonder that several players, be it auto giants, solar power developers or lithium ion battery manufacturers, are trying to seize their EV moment.

Globally, one of the biggest moves towards e-mobility adoption was in July this year when Sweden-based Volvo announced that it would start manufacturing only partially or completely battery-powered vehicles from 2019.

Even Indian companies like Ola pledged to contribute significantly to the sustainable mobility mission while automaker Mahindra hived off an arm, Mahindra Electric, for EV manufacturing.

However, along with the large-scale opportunities, the electric vehicle segment also presents some challenges. One of the major ones is that of charging.

Taking charge

Aiming to resolve this issue is startup EVI Technologies, which is developing DC-based fast-charging solutions and stations for electric vehicles.

Launched earlier this year, the startup is run by core team of four IITians and has deployed three charging stations in Raipur city.

Rupesh Kumar, Co-founder of EVI Technologies, feels that building a charging infrastructure is critical for an ecosystem of sustainable mobility.

“We are addressing two major hurdles to switch to EVs - one is charging infrastructure to remove range anxiety and the second is fast charging to save the time of the user,” he says.

 

Rupesh Kumar

The EVI charger contains a power unit and a control unit, with cables that attach to the power socket. Resembling the size of a petrol bunk, the charger has three outputs and can be easily installed at a petrol station.

The charger, compatible with Mahindra Reva e20 and other electric vehicles, has been designed to detect and charge an EV as per the battery type and charging requirement.

Currently, a charger developed by EVI Technologies can charge electric vehicles in less than 80 minutes. The brand has 70 orders of fast DC-based charging stations for EVs and is planning to install at 20-plus stations in New Delhi this month.

“We have already tested this on a small scale and found it feasible. We are currently working on protocols and may start field trials in the next six months,” Rupesh adds.

The startup got a grant of Rs 3 lakh after being incubated at the government-funded electronics incubator, Electropreneur Park, and is planning to raise funds in future.

When it comes to the revenue model, the charger will be sold to franchisees through trade partners.

To strongly focus on R&D and quickly tap the market, the brand has sold marketing rights to five channel partners, which will cover regions including Delhi, UP, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Uttarakhand, and Bihar.

Watch Rupesh Kumar talking about how EVI Technologies plans to tap the growing electric vehicles market.

 

 

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