The award was given in recognition of the ZipCharge portable EV power bank through which the company aims to “democratise access to energy” to provide clean, low-cost energy wherever people need it – to charge an EV, power the home or access energy on the go.
The Decarbonising Cities award recognises the start-up community who are leading the pathway to a cleaner-energy future for cities.
Charging has emerged as one of the main barriers in EV adoption in recent years with many people finding public charging, the only alternative to home charging, inconvenient and expensive – an inequality that ZipCharge believes must end. According to research by Ofgem in 2021, 59% of participants worried about being unable to charge at home.
“The team at ZipCharge are passionate about improving our environment and building more resilient cities through innovation and this award underlines our commitment to delivering on that promise,” said the start-up’s co-founder Jonathan Carrier. The awards saw ZipCharge showcasing its ‘Go’ portable power bank and its use of machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) as a solution to optimising energy storage and achieving a cleaner-energy future for cities.
The start-up says it is developing the Go based upon the same rigorous engineering approach as major car manufacturers by building several iterations of prototypes from validation through to pre-production, all of which will undergo an extensive testing regime.
It is currently optimising the performance of the portable EV charger’s key system components to evaluate thermal behaviour, charging performance, safety, durability and full functionality to ensure a seamless and safe ownership experience for everyday charging.
The Go is the first element of a global platform, which also includes the recently announced GoHub public infrastructure concept, that combines hardware, software, machine learning and innovative ownership models to bring affordable, practical EV charging to more people than ever.
“ZipCharge is a prime example of a start-up with the vision and technical ability to produce a product that could transform the urban environment. Their portable EV power bank will help democratise EV ownership and significantly reduce carbon in cities,” said Shell’s VP of Computational Science & Digital Innovation, Dan Jeavons.
According to a study by Connected Kerb in 2020, 89% of participants said they would be encouraged to make their next car purchase an EV if they were offered access to a parking space – on-street or at work – where they could charge their EV while it is parked.
Realising that widespread EV adoption would be hampered by the inability to charge near or at home prompted ZipCharge co-founders Richie Sibal and Jonathan Carrier to launch a range of powerful, smart portable chargers ranging from 4-8kWh in capacity. Bi-directional charging enables the ZipCharge Go to function as a local energy storage device and feed back into the grid when not in use.