When it comes to test driving the latest electric cars in some of the most beautiful places it can be a challenge to locate a single charging point, let alone enough to support a fleet of vehicles. However, a technology solution that uses renewable energy has provided the answer.
For the latest European test drives of the Polestar 1 electric performance car, which took place in Florence, Italy, a fuel cell system was installed in the grounds of Villa Cora to produce electricity to charge the vehicles.
Renewable energy company GeoPura and technology company Siemens provided power for the event’s 10 fast chargers and 2 rapid chargers using a system that doesn’t produce any harmful emissions or burn fossil fuel. Typically at off-grid locations where there is no charging infrastructure, diesel generators are required to charge, however in this case green hydrogen fuel was used.
The GeoPura model uses renewable energy, namely solar or wind, to create a hydrogen-based fuel at sites throughout the UK. This fuel is then transported using emissions free road tankers and delivered to locations where a local generator converts it to electricity. This can help power off-grid events or provide additional capacity to meet high demands. From start to finish it’s 100% carbon and emissions free – the only by-product is water and air – and it operates independently from the electricity network.
“We were delighted to work with our partners Siemens to support the Polestar 1 test drive. This is an important capability because it’s very unlikely that the world’s electricity distribution networks will be able to provide all the electrical energy that we’ll soon need,” said Andrew Cunningham, managing director of GeoPura.
“If we’re going to limit the effects of climate change we must decarbonize. Part of the solution will be to electrify our heating and transportation, whilst switching energy generation away from fossil fuels to renewable sources. The elegant beauty around us at Villa Cora reminded us that we need magnificent electric vehicles such as the Polestar 1 and we all need to seize the opportunity to enjoy a clean environment by using clean, renewable energy to charge these vehicles.”
GeoPura and Siemens showcased this world-first end to end commercial proposition at the Goodwood Festival of Speed earlier this year. As a technology partner for the festival, Siemens enlisted GeoPura to help power a section of the Festival with 100% emissions free, off-grid electricity using green hydrogen. This included charging the super-power EV cars in the First Glance Paddock which ultimately led to the first emissions free iconic Goodwood Hill Climb.