Project Better Place (PBC), California, has signed a letter of intent with Danish energy company DONG Energy aimed at reducing CO2 emissions from the Danish car fleet by providing electric cars, batteries and the infrastructure required for implementing a sustainable transportation energy solution. Together with PBC, DONG Energy will work on the further development of the project to give Danish consumers access to buying environmentally friendly electric vehicles (EVs) at attractive prices.
Denmark is the second country in which such a transportation solution is being planned, Israel, previous post, being the first.
The presentation, below, by Shai Agassi, founder and CEO of PBC, at a New Democrat Network meeting gives a very good explanation of the business model that will be used by PBC to implement the electric car fleet and required infrastructure (drag slider to 4:15 to avoid introduction), my short explanation is given following the video.
Through the PBC and Renault-Nissan Alliance partnership announced last January, Renault will provide Better Place Denmark with zero emissions electric vehicles that offer driving performances similar to a gasoline engine. Nissan, through its joint venture with NEC of Japan, has created an advanced Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) battery pack, using currently available technology, that meets the requirements of the electric vehicle and will be mass-produced.
The energy for the project will be generated by large scale wind or solar thermal installations sending the energy directly over the electric grid into an electric battery which powers an efficient electric motor. The batteries will not be included with the price of the car, rather provided as part of a service plan. The batteries will be charged by the creation of an ubiquitous infrastructure that can enable a car to automatically charge up its battery when parked, and on the exceptional long drive using an exchange station, either part of a gas station or a seperate facility, where the discharged battery is replaced with a fully charged one.
A white paper can be found here at PBC's website, free registration required, which gives a more detailed explanation of the reasoning behind PBC, its vision and plan for execution.
Thanks to Celsias for the tip on the video.