A few years ago, the Volkswagen Group unveiled a concept mobile robot on its Future Mobility Day that can automatically charge a battery to a car,media reported. Now, the auto giant has unveiled a newer version that will allow the newer robot to serve multiple cars at the same time.
Released in 2017, the concept robot is essentially a large battery with wheels, with a robotic arm above it charging the latter by inserting a charging connector into the car. In the new version, the basic concept of the battery robot remains the same, but the robotic arm and auto-intelligence can now be separated from the energy storage device, known as the “battery car.”
When a smartphone app or V2X communication gives a prompt, the self-driving robot automatically walks toward the vehicle and carries a battery car, then connects the battery car with built-in charging electronics to the car and starts charging. It is reported that the battery car can support up to 50Kw DC fast charge, battery capacity of about 25 kWh.
When the robot is separated from the energy storage device, it can operate another battery car to charge another car. While this obviously requires multiple battery car units, this reduces overall costs because only robotic units require the deployment of autopilot technology.
Volkswagen sees the concept of mobile charging as a way to introduce charging infrastructure into all the spaces in parking facilities, where it would be uneconomical or unfeasible to choose to integrate fixed charging infrastructure.