Oslo to become first city to offer wireless EV charging
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The Norwegian capital will have a network of wireless charging stations installed to serve the city’s taxis, which are set to go all-electric in the coming years.
Many major cities are in the process of installing electric charging points to support drivers switching from petrol and diesel to electric vehicles (EVs). However, Oslo will be the first to offer EV owners the option of wirelessly charging their vehicles.
The project will be carried out by clean energy company Fortum, wireless charging company Momentum Dynamics and the City of Oslo.
Fortum has said that electric taxis struggle to charge their vehicles conveniently, as it takes too long for drivers to find and use a charging point. While wireless EV charging is typically much slower than wired charging, this project aims to offer a wireless charging service that is faster and more convenient than the alternatives.
According to a statement from Fortum, wireless charging plates will be installed in useful locations in the ground throughout the city. These plates use induction technology to charge EVs at up to 75kW.
“We will install the wireless chargers at taxi stands, such as the one at the Oslo Central Station. Taxis will be able to drive up to the charger and a wireless charging session will automatically start. This allows taxis to charge in a place where they would anyway be waiting for new customers,” said Annika Hoffner, head of Fortum Charge & Drive. “The difference is that they won’t be emitting exhaust while waiting; instead, they will be receiving renewable energy to charge the taxi’s battery.”
Oslo is aiming for all of its taxi drivers to go electric in the coming years, in order to reduce harmful emissions within the city.
Sture Portvik, electro mobility manager for the City of Oslo, commented that: “The future is electric and it is already here, right now. Wireless charging is a potential game changer. From 2023 onward, all taxis in Oslo will be zero emission. Together with the taxi industry, we will make sure that the shift is as user friendly and efficient as possible.”
The Scandinavian country is leading in the switchover from conventional vehicles to EVs. Its small population size and absence of a national petrol and diesel car industry has allowed the government to introduce charges without the resistance and logistical challenges experienced in other countries. Norway is the largest market in Europe for electric cars and has even started to electrify its aircraft.
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