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Volkswagen presents the concept of autonomous charging robot for electric vehicle

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Volkswagen presents the concept of autonomous charging robot for electric vehicle

Volkswagen has presented its new charging system prototype for electric vehicles. An autonomous robot brings an energy storage system directly to the car and takes care of the connection. Since it does not need to stay close to the vehicle, this same robot can then go to take care of the connection or disconnection of another vehicle.

Volkswagen unveiled, Thursday, December 26, 2019, a concept of autonomous charging robot for electric vehicles parked in underground parking lots. In the manufacturer’s vision, it is no longer necessary to look for a place with a charging station since the latter comes directly to the vehicle. Its concept includes an autonomous robot that can transport energy storage devices, called battery wagons, to the electric vehicle.

Activate the robot using an application

In order to be able to move freely in a car park, avoiding all obstacles, the robot is equipped with cameras, laser scanners and ultrasonic sensors. Just activate this robot via a V2X application or communication. Then, the robot moves autonomously towards the vehicle needing to be charged. Opening the plug cover, connecting the vehicle to the energy storage device and disconnecting: the robot takes care of everything.

Fully charged, an energy storage device has about 25 kWh of energy. “Thanks to the integrated charging electronics, the energy storage system provides fast direct-current charging of up to 50 kW per vehicle,” says Volkswagen. And a charging robot can move several battery wagons at the same time.

A robot and several battery wagons

If the charging device remains close to the electric vehicle for the entire duration of the operation, the mobile robot can leave to take care of connecting or disconnecting other vehicles. “With this system, it is possible to electrify almost all car parks without using complex individual infrastructure,” said Mark Moller, director of development at Volkswagen Group Components, in a statement. Depending on the size of the car park, several robots can be used simultaneously so that several vehicles can be taken care of.

“This visionary prototype could become a reality fairly quickly if the general conditions are met,” adds Mark Moller. Without specifying on what horizon it could materialize. In France, the start-up Mob Energy is developing an autonomous robot capable of storing energy using recycled batteries and of recharging electric vehicles parked in a parking lot independently.

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