A lot of people ask where do you charge. The answer is nearly for all EV drivers is at home. Some times the next question is do you need special equipment to which the answer is a powerpoint. (more specifically a 15amp powerpoint for the provide cable with the LEAF or I-miev). When out and about we have the following options.
There are two providers of commercial charging infrastructure in Australia, both are American Chargepoint and Blink, there was a 3rd Better place but unfortunately that company went broke. Blink is yet to setup an Australian office so they are a bit harder to contact.
Chargepoint have a office in every state of Australia and have around 167 charge stations in the country. The chargepoint model is a low risk for them, it requires the person or business that wants a charging station to pay for the capital costs of supply and install of the charger. It’s then up to the charging station owner if they want to charge the EV driver and chargepoint through the use of their RFID tags issued to drivers then take care of the payment system and charger driver accordingly, at present all the ones in Australia are free to use.
As you can see the blink network is much smaller, with only 5 sites and 7 chargers. blink doesn’t let the site owner choose the price but instead charge $1USD per hour. I’m still waiting to hear from blink sales on if they have plans to expand in Australia.
What if you don’t want to charge people or just provide a simple power point. Well for these site there is a great site that EV drivers and Charging spot owners can used to share information. http://www.recargo.com/search (you might have to pan to Australia) Allows you to sign up and add charge points to there map tell other EV drivers that a charging spot works by checking in (think foursquare and facebook), and upload pictures to help people find charge location. This has probably been the most useful tool so far when it comes to charging infrastructure, I highly recommend all EV drivers install the app on the iphone or android.
Currently there still isn’t enough charging infrastructure, not because the current EV drivers need it but mainly because it puts people off buying a EV.
In a small effort to make it easier for business to understand what’s required to provide a service to EV drivers I prepared a primer
In July we purchased a 2012 I-miev ex-demo (Dec 2012 rego) from booths motor group Gosford for $25000 it’s now November so in 3-4 months we have done ~5000km. it’s had its 1500km service and the next service is at 15000km or 1 year.
Driving a EV is like driving a classic car, you rarely see them on the road and there is a nice community around them.
Like I said this is post number one more are coming !
To upload I’m using the fronius easy card talking serial to a spare laptop ( will replace laptop with a raspi when i get a wireless card for it), because the sunpower inverter is a re-badged fronius i am using fslurp to do the serial commands
The only thing which needs to be changed is my device type is 0x97 Sunpower SPR-3501F-2, which is listed by fslurp as a unknown device.
So I decided to build a quad mainly the one designed by the diydrones.com people, there are 2 suppliers of the kit jdrones and udrones. one is based in Asia the other in the US.
I decided to be slack and buy the pre-soldered kit, I can solder and it’s not like it was anything hard like surface mount. Big NOTE when they say pre-soldered they don’t mean the entire kit has be soldered you still have to solder 24 bullet connectors and the power distribution board, and for some reason they give you the magnetometer attached by cable not soldered directly to a header on a board like they recommend.
What I forgot to buy is some headers: http://store.jdrones.com/product_p/conhead20angle.htm and http://store.jdrones.com/product_p/conhead20str.htm
Ok so this isn’t enough to make it fly and yes you’ve just spent nearly a AU$1000 you’ll also need to get a Battery, and a radio. For that I tried the hobbyking.com shop. Note: if it’s not in stock in the Australian warehouse delivery times seem a bit slow.Also LiPo battery’s can not be shipped by air, make sure you buy in Australia for those.
Lastly is the radio the most expensive single item after the kit. I’m trying to get my hand on this but apparently the queue is long and the might take months. why so popular you ask well it cost like $60. and something with that many channels cost normally around $200+ so If nothing ships soon I’m looking at buying one of these Futaba 7c and probably from the more local hobby store dune planes
What you need to know about the TX RX radio is basically get 2.4 GHz otherwise the local model aircraft club will not let you fly near them. and you need at least 6 channels and any more than 8 channels is pointless
The diydrone has a very smart and easily programmable flight controller if you want cheap and no as intelligent have a look at kkmulticopter