MONTREAL, Nov. 28, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - The Electric Circuit, the largest public charging network for electric vehicles (EVs) in Québec, is pleased to announce another improvement: the addition of Québec's first 400-V fast-charge station. The charging station installed at the St-Hubert restaurant in Boucherville, which is located at 500, rue Albanel, is now accessible to drivers of all-electric vehicles with quick-charging capability.
"The Electric Circuit is delighted to diversify its range of services and to be adding a first fast-charge station to the existing network of some two hundred and thirty 240-V stations," said Pierre-Luc Desgagné, Hydro Québec's Vice-President - Public and Government Affairs. "So far, the Electric Circuit is Québec's only public charging network to offer this type of charging, which is intended for specially equipped all-electric vehicles," he added.
To use the fast-charge station, EV drivers must first obtain an Electric Circuit card, if they have not already done so, by visiting theelectriccircuit.com. For an introductory period, quick charging will be offered at the same rate as 240-V charging, i.e. for a flat fee of $2.50 per charge, no matter how long it takes. The rate will eventually be revised.
The Electric Circuit would like to underscore the fact that the St-Hubert restaurant in Boucherville, where this first fast-charge station was originally installed for test purposes and is now located, has worked very closely with the team on this project.
Fast-charge station tested in Québec
The charging station being put into service today has been used over the last year for running quick-charge tests under real conditions in Boucherville, as part of an extensive all-electric vehicle demonstration project.
In ideal conditions (mild temperature, 15°C, and low initial charge), a fast charge to 80% of battery capacity will take only about 30 minutes for an all-electric vehicle. With cold temperatures in the winter, it can take significantly longer to charge an EV at a 400-V charging station, unlike a 240-V station, which is not affected by ambient temperature.
It is worth remembering that most charging is done at home, where the vehicle is parked most of the time. EV drivers who would like to extend the range of their vehicle have access to the Electric Circuit's many 240-V charging stations throughout Québec. For all-electric vehicles with quick-charging capability, the 400-V station provides drivers with an additional option.
"The fast-charge service is offered in addition to the 240-V charging service and it will significantly strengthen our network by enabling us to meet all EV charging needs," noted Mr. Desgagné.
Largest all-electric demonstration project, with very promising results
The conclusions of the 30 all-electric vehicle field trial conducted from December 2010 to June 2013 have now been drawn up. They include the satisfaction of the participants and organizations involved, who very much appreciated their driving experience. Close to half of them purchased an EV at the end of the testing program. The participants of the pilot project felt that home charging was sufficient for most trips and many of them felt an EV could be used as a household's primary vehicle, all year round.
The Hydro-Québec pilot project in Boucherville was the largest all-electric vehicle field trial ever carried out under real conditions in Canada. Conducted in partnership with the City of Boucherville and Mitsubishi Canada, the program tracked the driving habits and behavior of 31 motorists from 27 organizations. The 31 drivers traveled approximately 740,000 km in all, which means that the atmosphere was spared around 104 tons of greenhouse gases.
The Electric Circuit
The Electric Circuit is a major initiative in the rollout of charging infrastructure needed to support the arrival of plug-in vehicles in Québec.
The Electric Circuit is the largest public charging network in Québec, with 230 charging stations (240-V and 400-V) in operation in parking lots of the AMT, RONA stores, Metro grocery stores and St-Hubert restaurants throughout Québec. Since its launch in March 2012, 51 private and institutional partners have joined the Electric Circuit. It will continue to expand in order to offer greater geographical coverage and serve more EV drivers in many regions of Québec.
Electric Circuit users have access to a 24/7 telephone help line run by CAA-Québec, as well as a charging station locator service. The Electric Circuit Web site, theelectriccircuit.com, is updated as new stations are installed or commissioned.
SOURCE: Electric Circuit
For further information:
Hydro-Québec, for the Electric Circuit