Israel Working to Solve EV Fast Charging Problem

Israel Working to Solve EV Fast Charging Problem

© David Burton 2022

Fast Charging Israeli Style

     Israel has a reputation of being a word-class technology leader. Building upon this reputation, the "Start-Up Nation” is working hard to solve the fast charging problem that has slowed the introduction of electric vehicles (EVs) into the world-wide economy.

     One Israeli company, ZOOZ Power (formerly Chakratec), “is partnering with an unnamed car rental services provider to demonstrate its ability to enable EV charging in sites where the electric grid is power-constrained.
     “Car rental services are facing new challenges with the transition to electric vehicles. They need to build ultra-fast charging infrastructure to operate efficiently, but many of their sites are constrained by the electric grid and they cannot do so.
     “The pilot {program} with Zooz and the car rental company should provide a solution. The goal is to have the pilot site operational in mid-2023 for a period of 12 months."(Ref. 1)

     This particular car rental company operates thousands of car rental sites in more than 100 countries worldwide. ZOOZ Power signed a binding memorandum of understanding for collaboration with the car rental services provider. The purpose of the collaboration is to build and operate an EV ultra-fast charging infrastructure which will demonstrate ZOOZ Power's solution based on the ZOOZTER-100 and its ability to enable and support ultra-fast charging of electric vehicles in sites where the electric grid is power-constrained.
     To proceed with the transition to EVs and the electrification of its car rental fleet, the car rental company needs to build an ultra-fast charging infrastructure. This is required to assure high quality of service to its customers and efficient operation of its vehicle rental sites. At many of the car rental locations, substantial power grid constraints inhibit or delay the installation of an ultra-fast EV charging infrastructure. Thus, the pilot program is part of the car rental service's efforts to find solutions to these challenges. The goal is to have the pilot site operational during Q2/2023 for a period of 12 months.
     ZOOZ is reportedly a leading supplier of flywheel-based power boosting solutions that produce ultra-green, ultra-fast electric vehicle charging anywhere. ZOOZ is hoping to accelerate the mass adoption of electric vehicles around the world by enabling the production of cost-effective ultra-fast charging infrastructures while sustainably overcoming existing grid limitations. ZOOZ's unique flywheel-based power boosting technology enables unlimited high-power charge and discharge cycles with a lifespan of more than 15 years. The flywheel-based power boosting system is based on kinetic energy storage in flywheels which is neither toxic, nor based on rare earth materials, making it intrinsically green.[2]

     It's claimed that the ZOOZ system can charge an electric vehicle in as little as 15 minutes.[3]

     Another Israeli startup company, ElectReon, has developed a smart road system that charges vehicles while they are in full motion.
     ElectReon provides wireless and in-road electric vehicle (EV) charging technology and, is set to deploy its first public wireless EV charging road system the U.S. in Detroit, Michigan.
     The Tel Aviv-based startup announced in early 2022 they would build an Electric Road System (ERS) in Detroit, as part of the inductive vehicle charging pilot program in partnership with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), the Michigan Office of Future Mobility and Electrification (OFME) and the Michigan Economic Development Corp. (MEDC).
     The wireless charging infrastructure will support various vehicle types and partners including autonomous vehicles. The roadway will charge electric vehicles whether they’re in motion or at a stop through a process called inductive charging. The concept is much the same as that used to wirelessly recharge cell phones.
     Founded in 2013, ElectReon has developed a system to charge electric vehicles (EVs) while in full motion using copper coils placed under the middle lane of the road. The coils are covered by the pavement and powered by an underground system with vehicle charging performed by a receiver or multiple receivers installed under the vehicle. Electric vehicles could receive continuous power while driving driven on these smart roads.
     The company’s goal is to allow EVs to carry smaller batteries, or maybe none at all, making them lighter and more efficient, as well as reducing the environmental costs of battery production.
     ElectReon has a number of partnerships in France, Belgium, Germany, and Sweden to use its smart road tech with long-haul trucks and a program in Tel Aviv for the wireless charging of the Dan Bus Company’s electric buses.
     At the end of 2021, the inductive charging tech provider announced the launch of the “Arena of the Future” project in Brescia, Italy where the company had integrated its wireless technology to charge an IVECO bus and Stellantis’s Fiat Nuova 500 passenger vehicle while driving. The project demonstrated contactless charging for a range of EVs as they drove on highways and toll roads. This was being viewed as a potential pathway to decarbonizing long-haul transportation systems along highway transport corridors.
     ElectReon was listed in the transportation category of TIME’s 2021 compilation of “100 Best Inventions.”[4]

     Israel has emerged as a leader in transportation technology, even though the country does not have any car, train, bus or airplane manufacturers. But as transportation increasingly becomes less about wheels and more about the computers inside, Israel’s high-tech prowess has not only become relevant, but highly sought after.
     The highest-profile developments for the future of transportation tech revolve around electrification as we move away from polluting fossil fuels.
     In the following, we look at some other Israeli startups that are working to make EV’s the vehicles of the future by reducing their long charging times.
     StoreDot: Even with the longer ranges of the latest electric cars, anxiety about running out of juice far from a charging station remains one of the biggest concerns for would-be EV buyers. How many miles is enough to feel comfortable that you won’t get stuck? An EV with a UFC (ultrafast charging) battery from Israel’s StoreDot can be “filled up” to capacity in just five minutes.
     StoreDot replaces the graphite used by other electric battery manufacturers with a mix of metalloids including silicon and proprietary organic compounds synthesized in its labs. The company has partnered with BP Ventures to help convert the oil company’s 18,000 gas stations to electric, and with German vehicle manufacturer Daimler.
     Addionics: The structure of batteries hasn’t changed for 30 years. So, the Israeli company set out to address an opportunity described as worth “trillions of dollars.” Addionics is changing battery architecture to increase the density in electric batteries by filling space that up to now has not been well utilized.
     The Addionics battery will halve charging time and increase range.
     Driivz: No matter how a battery is built – using lithium ion, synthetic metalloids or nano-powered electrodes – drivers still need to plug in. Tel Aviv startup Driivz builds the charge spots and software to manage a “cloud-based electric vehicle charging network.”
     The company’s technology is used by over a million drivers around the world. Driivz acquired some of the assets of Israeli electric car pioneer Better Place after the latter’s bankruptcy in 2013.
     In 2016, Driivz became the preferred IT solutions provider in North America for EVgo, the largest network of public fast-charging stations in the United States. In December 2021, US fueling and equipment company Gilbarco Veeder Root acquired Driivz for $200 million.
     Chakratec: The flywheels in Chakratec’s chargers are suspended by magnetic levitation and are intended for EV charging stations. Since the flywheels are suspended by magnets in a vacuum chamber, there’s almost no friction. The flywheel stores energy until it’s ready to be transferred to a vehicle. This is more environmentally friendly than typical charging stations that store electricity from the power grid in large lithium-ion batteries.
     We’ve already described ElectReon and its innovative technology. Founded in 2013, the company is based in Beit Yanai, Israel.[5]

     And then there is that pioneering Israeli company, Better Place, that was founded in 2007 and went bankrupt in 2013. Way back then, it came up with the revolutionary battery swapping concept that is being tried in China today.[6]

  1. Startup Rolls Out Ultra-fast Charging at LaGuardia Airport, Ariel Grossman,,
    6 November 2022.
  2. ZOOZ Power join forces with global car rental giant to test kinetic power-boosted ultra-fast EV charging system,, 9 November 2022.
  3. Israeli systems that charge electric vehicles in 15 minutes to deploy in Europe, US, Sue Surkes,
    The Times of Israel, 1 September 2022.
  4. Israeli Electric Vehicle Firm Builds US Road To Charge Cars While They Drive,
    Simona Shemer and Max Kaplan-Zantopp, NoCamels, 6 February 2022.
  6. EV battery swapping was left for dead. Now, it’s being revived in China., Zeyl Yang, protocol, 21 March 2022.

  1 December 2022 {Article_556; Israel_72}    
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