Recharge offer: The govt is planning to introduce a subsidy for businesses looking to establish electric vehicle charging points across the country.

Govt to provide subsidy to set up EV charging infra: Power Secretary

The central government is trying to change the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (FAME II) policy to include a subsidy for businesses looking to establish electric vehicle (EV) charging points across India, Union power secretary Alok Kumar said. The government would offer subsidies to the companies looking to build charging infrastructure in the country, which will subsequently be given to the regional electricity distribution firms. For instance, the installation of a 200-KW charging infrastructure for electric vehicles will receive a subsidy of about Rs4-5 lakh. 

Fire at e-scooter showroom in Hyderabad kills 8

A fire broke out at an electric scooter store in Hyderabad on September 12, leaving eight people dead and numerous others injured. The fire reportedly erupted at the showroom on the ground floor and spread to a hotel located above it, on the building’s upper floors. Authorities are yet to determine the cause of the fire. Whether it is due to short circuit or charging of batteries in the cellar or in the first floor where the scooter showroom is located, will be known after the fire department’s investigation. All 40 electric bikes, purportedly kept on the charging mode in the showroom, were gutted. The police have so far booked the building and showroom owners. 

About 25 guests were stuck there when the fire erupted. Viral videos showed people trying to jump out of the windows. The PM announced a compensation of Rs2 lakh for the kin of the deceased and Rs50,000 for the injured from the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF).

Used electric car batteries to get a second life as stationary energy storage systems

The national railway company of Germany, Deutsche Bahn (DB), and Korean car maker Kia have partnered up to reuse used lithium-ion batteries from electric vehicles to create efficient and cost-effective energy storage systems for green electricity. These second-life battery energy storage solutions can save surplus electricity from photovoltaic systems or, as part of a distributed system, can supply power throughout the day to DB maintenance depots and depots where trains are prepared for operations. This would help cut the cost of power peaks. 

The pilot project went into operation in Berlin in July 2022. The procedure is being handled by encore, a corporate startup of DB Bahnbau Gruppe, which will start serial manufacture and distribution of several hundred battery energy storage systems in 2023.

BMW to use cylindrical battery cells for new class of EVs from 2025

In order to speed up charging and increase range, BMW will use cylindrical battery cells produced in six plants by partners like China’s CATL and EVE Energy. They will power its next class of electric vehicles to be introduced in 2025. BMW’s new generation of batteries will use more nickel and silicon and less cobalt, leading to a 20% increase in energy density, 30% faster charging and a 30% longer range than previous generations. Breaking from the prismatic cells it has so far used in its batteries, BMW is following Tesla’s  (TSLA.O) path that uses 4,680 cylindrical batteries. Prismatic batteries are rectangular in shape and have become the most common form of auto battery in the past two years as they can be more densely packed, saving on costs. However, cylindrical batteries with the newer larger format cells are said to become more cost-effective due to improvements in energy density.