Rhombus Energy Solutions Awarded BESTFIT Innovative Charging Solution for Light-Duty Vehicles
Partners Smartville, Inc. and the City of Chula Vista to field groundbreaking mobile charging system for local low-income and disadvantaged communities
SAN DIEGO, CALIF. — April, 2021
Today, Rhombus Energy Solutions is announcing that it is one of the recipients of a California Energy Commission (CEC) BESTFIT Innovative Charging Solutions award for the Clean Transportation Program GFO-20-605. The award is for the Light-Duty Vehicle Sector Focus Area 2 (“Minimizing Operation, Purchase, and/or Installation Costs”), for the ‘El Bumeran’ Mobile Light-Duty EV Charging System. Joining Rhombus in this award are partners Smartville, Inc. and the City of Chula Vista, CA.
According to studies done by the CEC and groups such as the Greenling Institute, low-income and disadvantaged communities have consistently been underserved by new clean energy technologies, and vehicle electrification is not an exception. Disadvantaged communities are also often the most impacted by the air quality issues that vehicle electrification can successfully address. One of the greatest hurdles to the use of electric vehicles (EVs) in low-income communities is the lack of charging infrastructure. Without enough EVs, private sector actors will not deploy charging stations in low-income and disadvantaged areas, and without charging resources, the residents of these areas will not buy EVs.
“Rhombus Energy Solutions is pleased to support the CEC and the citizens of Chula Vista and the surrounding areas with the El Bumeran Mobile Charging Solution,” said Rick Sander, CEO of Rhombus Energy Solutions. “The proposed project will minimize the costs for stationary DC fast charging infrastructure by providing a low-cost, yet high-powered charging alternative. In addition, an on-board energy storage system (ESS) that re-charges from both solar and off-peak grid power will minimize the impact to the local grid and maximize solar power utilization, further reducing energy costs.”
El Bumeran is an innovative EV charging solution that provides competitive and cost advantages over current mobile EV charging solutions. The solution combines an electrified van, silicon carbide (SiC) based charging infrastructure, and 240 kWh of low-cost, second-life vehicle batteries to provide 120 kW of high-powered charging across four charger ports (up to 30kW per port). The batteries can be partially recharged from a solar canopy mounted on the van’s rooftop, and can be fully recharged at night during super-off-peak hours. El Bumeran’s mobile nature eliminates the need for permits or infrastructure during deployment and operation, and allows the solution to be quickly directed to where it is needed, providing the ability to service multiple locations in a single day.
“Building innovative solutions for challenging problems has always been a part of Rhombus’ history,” stated Joseph Gottlieb, CTO of Rhombus Energy Solutions. “The opportunity to combine solar energy, battery energy storage and a silicon carbide-based state-of-the-art DC fast charger into a mobile solution is a unique opportunity to demonstrate our expertise. We look forward to working with our partners, Smartville and the City of Chula Vista, to provide this solution to the public.”
Rhombus Energy Solutions and Smartville Inc. have successfully developed and demonstrated DC fast charging and energy storage systems (the two primary sub-components of the El Bumeran) in real-life commercial programs and existing CEC grants, thus significantly reducing project risk. The proposed program will accelerate the commercialization of a competitive charging solution to provide mobile charging for multiple customer segments, and bring significant benefit to California ratepayers by improving charging availability and EV penetration in public parking, workplaces, rural areas, emergency operations and especially low-income and disadvantaged communities.
About Rhombus Energy Solutions
Rhombus develops and manufactures next-generation bi-directional electric vehicle charging infrastructure, high-efficiency power conversion systems and energy management system (EMS) software for vehicle-to-grid (V2G) capable electric vehicle fleet charging, energy storage and microgrid applications. The high reliability of our solutions is the result of decades of experience developing high-power systems for a variety of applications and deployment scenarios, including UL-1741-SA system-to-grid solutions. For more information, please visit http://www.RhombusEnergy.com.
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