GE builds wind-powered electric car charger in Spain

Posted at August 16, 2012 » By : » Categories : News » Comments Off on GE builds wind-powered electric car charger in Spain

US engineering General Electric (GE) is joining forces with Urban Green Energy to develop the world’s first wind-powered electric vehicle charger.

Not content with solar-powered carports for charging electric vehicles, which are now popping up across North America including at Google’s California headquarters, GE has now turned to another renewable energy source.

The 4 kW wind-powered charger, known as the Sanya Skypump, is 4.5 m high and can be sited in any urban area. Instead of having horizontal blades like conventional wind turbines, the Skypump features innovative vertical turbines with just a 1.5 m diameter.

The turbines, which are similar to the ones recently installed in the Olympic Park in London for the 2012 Games, are already in use powering homes and street lights.

The first Skypump, which has been installed outside Barcelona in Spain at the headquarters of waste management company Cespa, can charge a Chevy Volt or similar electric vehicle in just four hours.

GE Energy and UGE plan to rollout more chargers later this year in the US and Australia at shopping centres, universities and other busy locations.

The expansion is part of GE Energy’s goal to offer electric vehicle drivers a range of “easy to use, flexible systems to help make electric vehicles a practical everyday reality”, says marketing director Charles Elazar.

But GE’s plans suffered a setback earlier this summer when it emerged that the company’s WattStation home electric vehicle charger had damaged 11 Nissan LEAFs. The fault occurs under certain conditions, such as when power supply drops, when the car’s software allows damage to take place.

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Related stories:
GE Energy makes electric car charging simple with PayPal (16-Jul)
US west coast ‘electric highway’ reaches Canada (31-May)
GE unveils new networked electric vehicle recharging system (30-Apr)
GE and Inovateus Solar charge up solar carports for electric vehicles (10-Oct 2011)

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