By Debbie Holden 13 Apr 2018 7 min read

World’s first electrified road charges vehicles on the go

Image: eRoadArlanda

About two kilometres of electrified road which charges vehicles as they drive opened earlier this week in Sweden. The project, known as eRoadArlanda, is said to be both cost-effective and sustainable and can charge commercial and passenger vehicles.

An electric rail has been installed along a two-kilometre stretch between an airport and the Rosenburg logistics area near Stockholm. Energy is transferred from the rail to a vehicle via a moveable arm. The current will disconnect when the vehicle stops and the system is able to debit the user based on how much energy their vehicle consumes. The electric rail is also divided into sections which are only activated when a vehicle is on it.

Charging vehicles in this way means that electric car batteries don’t have to store as much energy and can be smaller and cheaper. The eRoadArlanda consortium and the Swedish Transport Administration are looking at the possibility of rolling electrified roads out across the rest of Sweden. In theory, electrifying the 20,000km of highways in Sweden would be enough to keep vehicles charged as the distance between highways is a maximum of 45km.

Hans Säll, Chairman of the eRoadArlanda consortium, said: “One of the most important issues of our time is the question of how to make fossil-free road transportation a reality. We now have a solution that will make this possible, which is amazing. Sweden is at the cutting edge of this technology, which we now hope to introduce in other areas of the country and the world.”

Lena Erixon, Director General of the Swedish Transport Administration, added: “It is important to break new ground when it comes to climate-smart road transport. That’s why the Swedish Transport Administration supports administrative development projects that contribute to long-term, sustainable solutions.”

This project comes two years after another 2km stretch of road in Sweden was fitted with overhead power lines that can charge electric lorries on the go.

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