ZipCharge, the British innovator behind the compact ‘Go’ portable charger, has now revealed the ‘GoHub’, a portable EV charging station designed to make recharging easier in public areas.
The London-based manufacturer launched the Go power bank last November, showcasing its maneuverability – akin to a wheeled suitcase – lightweight build, and up to 32 km of available range as a means for EV owners to recharge their vehicles mid-journey. The GoHub takes this principle a step further by providing between five and 10 of the portable power banks in one easy-to-assemble station, examples of which can be placed in residential areas, supermarkets, shopping centres, or basically any public location that features a dedicated public parking spot.
As the world’s first portable EV charging infrastructure for shared use, ZipCharge credits the GoHub to be a “revolution in public charging provision”: the station is said to be three times quicker to erect than fixed on-street level 2 chargers as well as cheaper for customers to use.
“We intend to establish the world’s first vertically integrated ‘energy point operator’ (EPO) to serve hundreds of millions of people around the world so everyone can access convenient and low-cost energy,” company co-founder Jonathan Carrier explains. “The ZipCharge Go and the GoHub enable the storage of clean energy, which can then be distributed for a multitude of uses from charging an EV to powering equipment.”
“The Go and the GoHub are integral components of our future energy platform, one that combines hardware, software and distributed energy storage in the home and our public energy points to provide a wide range of energy services for our customers,” fellow co-founder Richie Sibal continues. “We will use technology to solve the inequality that exists around access to charging and energy by placing a ZipCharge Go unit within five minutes’ walk of where people live and park.”
Built to fit comfortably within a standard parking space (though the exact dimensions of the station have not been revealed), the portable GoHub is available in two variants: a single-sided unit houses five Go bays, while the double-sided holds 10. Each Go is available to rent 24 hours a day for a fixed cost per 4 kWh charge used. Customers can also make a reservation via the ZipCharge app.
EV owners then simply approach a bay door, which opens automatically, and wheel the portable Go to their vehicle, making the need for dedicated parking bays at recharging sites obsolete. When charging is complete (done with AC capability), the power bank is returned to its bay.
Alongside electric vehicles, the GoHub also includes a “micromobility docking station” for eBikes and eScooters, while customers can also use the dedicated WiFi hotspot and/or mobile phone chargers while waiting for their vehicle.
The GoHub incorporates up to 100 kWh-worth of second-life batteries from the Go power banks into the station’s ‘Energy Storage System’ to reduce costs and extend the battery life across its range. On top of that, ZipCharge also claims each portable station makes use of bi-directional charging to feed power back into the grid at peak times, allowing the company to charge lower prices.
Though ZipCharge has yet to outline a scheduled roll-out for the GoHub, ambitious targets include 100,000 examples being deployed worldwide by 2030.
“We predict our portable powerbanks will outsell fixed home chargers by 2030, in the same way mobile phones overtook landlines,” Mr Carrier continues. “That’s because the Go can be used for more than charging EV charging, it’s a portable energy storage device for personal energy management. We have the bold ambition to deploy 100,000 GoHubs globally by 2030 to support EV charging, local grid resiliency and energy democracy.”