India’s largest oil firm the Indian Oil can be seen taking a small step towards clean energy. On 26 June 2020, Indian Oil revealed its plans to establish Battery-swapping stations for electric vehicles at their existing petrol pumps in India.
Unlike regular EV charging stations where the driver has to plug-in their electric car at the charging point and wait till it is fully charged, the battery-swapping station will allow swapping of the discharged battery or battery pack immediately with a fully-charged one, thus avoiding the long waits before the battery gets fully charged.
The plan to establish new battery-swapping stations will take place in partnership with SUN Mobility, the leading energy infrastructure developer, based in Bengaluru, India, and will be called as Quick Interchange Station (QIS).
The chairman of the company Mr.Sanjiv Singh specified that the plan to execute the battery-swapping facility will be initiated with a pilot project at one of the outlets of the company in Chandigarh, which once successfully implemented will be scaled-up to 20 stations. In addition to Chandigarh, Amritsar, Bengaluru, New Delhi, Gurugram will be the next centers to be covered under the pilot project.
Chairman Sajiv Singh added that although people are ready to switch to EVs, they are being reluctant due to the long process involved in recharging the vehicles, and this is where the battery-swapping station will fill the void. “Not only will battery swapping eliminate the unnecessary waiting time for battery recharging, but it will also help with better land use, reduce the size of batteries in vehicles, and ensure an increased run time,” he said.
The project will initially be focused on commercial vehicles such as electric rickshaws, autos, and two-wheelers.
Dharmendra Pradhan, the oil minister of India, told the media that although oil firms are pushing vehicle users to adopt BS-VI engines throughout the nation, it is time that we should think green and develop better yet ground-breaking technologies that meet the most necessitated environmental norms.
He added that in the process of aligning their efforts aside Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision, they are working to mobilize the electric vehicle segment in India so as to meet India’s Paris Agreement commitment of reducing carbon emission intensity (emission per unit of GDP) by 33 to 35 percent of 2005 level over 15 years.
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