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Chargefox network calls on local industry

Australian manufacturing plays large part in Chargefox EV network rollout

31 Oct 2018

THE recently announced Chargefox electric vehicle (EV) fast-charging network has called on Australian manufacturers and contractors to help establish its nationwide suite of charging stations.
With the first station launched last week in the Victorian town of Euroa, Chargefox plans to roll out over 20 more stations on major highways to connect Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, while stations will also be installed north and south of Perth.
Speaking to GoAuto at the launch of the Euroa site, Jet Charge CEO and Chargefox head of EV strategy Tim Washington said it was important that Australian companies be involved in the manufacturing and implementation process.
“That’s why we contract not only Australian manufacturing, but local contractors, so basically the people who are setting up here, the people who have built these sites, are all local contractors,” he said.
Two types of charging station will be available at each site, including 50kW Veefil-RT chargers from Australian company Tritium, which makes them in Queensland.
Tritium was founded in 2001 and has been involved in EV infrastructure projects both at home and internationally.
The other type of charger is developed by Swedish/Swiss company ABB and manufactured in Italy.
Another local manufacturer tapped for the Chargefox network is Sydney-based solar company 5B, which has developed a new, efficient system for deploying its solar panels used to charge the DC charging stations.
The installation at Euroa consists of five 11kW ‘Maverick’ solar panels mated to a single 50kW Huawei inverter, but its method of deployment is what sets it apart from competitors.
Manufactured in a plant in Marricksville, Sydney, the solar panels are scalable and connected at the factory. Delivered to the site in one piece, the array is unfolded on site.
This means a job that would usually take a team of five a week to install can be done by a team of three in a day, with the help of a forklift.
5B will also install a 100kW solar array system at the site in Barnawartha North, the second proposed site for the Chargefox network which is expected to be completed in November.
Mr Washington said it was not just the physical hardware of the systems that was developed by Australians.
“In terms of manufacturing I will add that the software – which I also classify as manufacturing … it’s just software engineering – is all done by Australian developers. Chargefox is an Australian company,” he said.
He would not say how much the charging sites would cost, but did say that the $1 million investment from the Victorian government would not be enough to cover the installation of the two Victorian sites.

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