Electric cars in Ljubljana

29.03.2011 20:11

Charging stations like this are starting to pop up around the city. So far I've seen four of them, in the city center and the shopping district BTC (this site lists 13 however)

Vehicle charging station from Elektro Ljubljana

Surprisingly, they appear to be nothing more than glorified AC power sockets. This one is the only one I've seen that even has a display and buttons. The socket is of the exact same kind you have at home - that is an ordinary schuko, not some newly developed automobile connector.

That's good to know because the brochures for the electric cars of course state that you can charge their batteries in 30 minutes. However that is only possible with a socket like the new ISO 62192 type 2 that will provide as much as 250 A of current. You won't get one of these in you home any time soon and I have yet to see one in a charging station. With around 10 A that a schuko will provide you'll have to spend half a day shopping while the batteries charge.

That said you can't actually buy an electric car yet although it appears at least three models will get here sometime later this year. It's unclear what kind of a charging standard they will support.

The topic of electric cars also exposed (again) how completely devoid of even basic understanding of physical quantities most journalists are. Almost none of the articles covering this topic in print can correctly match the current, voltage, power and battery capacity with their respective units and meanings. Even the commercial for one of the cars states the power in kWh. Seriously?

While I must admit an electric car sounds neat, I don't see myself having one anytime soon. Even with the 5000€ government subsidy, the early-adopter cost will be roughly 3 times that of an internal combustion powered vehicle of comparable size and vastly superior range. Also I'm kind of skeptical of the green energy badges on these charging stations. We don't have enough domestic capacity even from dirty sources to power any significant number of electric vehicles.

Posted by Tomaž | Categories: Life

Comments

The question would be - can I charge my laptop/android phone while on the run, or it will fry it? :)

-jure

I'm quite sure the socket on the charging station has the same voltage as any other schuko socket around here. The control electronics might be an issue though - a recharging car battery will draw much more current than a laptop, so it might think nothing has been connected or that something went wrong and disconnect it early.

Fancy an experiment? Might be worth checking out the prices first though.

Posted by Tomaž

I think hydroelectricity is considered as green energy and there is quite a lot of it in Slovenia.

Posted by Dušan

Considering that many environmentalist organizations openly oppose new hydroelectric projects (they destroy habitats and disrupt ecosystems), wind generators (they kill birds and bats) and photovoltaics (they use heavy metals) I seriously don't know what green energy means today.

Even then there is not nearly enough hydropower potential in Slovenia for any serious adoption of electric cars.

Posted by Tomaž

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