Electric vehicles are no longer science fiction fantasy. With electric vehicles on the road in growing numbers, the knows that future use will only grow and it wants to be prepared.
City officials know there are at least five electric vehicles in town, but think there are probably more owners in Naperville. So, the city is raffling five electric vehicle charging stations with the goal of gathering valuable information.
“We will be able to see the load profile and how it flows,” said Mark Curran, the city of Naperville’s director of public utilities, electric. Curran added that gathering the data will allow the city learn how much of a load a power transformer has to meet and what affect it might have on household use and on the grid as more electric cars are used.
The charging stations are about one-foot square and are made to be wall-mounted in a garage, said Mark Curran, the city of Naperville’s director of public utilities, electric. Normally, an electric car owner would use a standard 120 volt electric outlet. The charging stations being raffled off are the next level.
The charging stations are 240 volts, which means less charging time for electric vehicle owners, he said. A typical 120 volt charging station would take about 8 to 10 hours to fully charge, whereas using the 240 volt station cuts the time in half.
One electric vehicle charging station will be raffled off to accommodate each of three electric vehicles currently available: the Chevy Volt, the Nissan Leaf and the Tesla, according to the city of Naperville. Two additional charging station units will be raffled for any one of the above-mentioned vehicles or other electric vehicles that are not listed but will meet pre-determined compatibility requirements.
The charging stations are available for purchase already at places like Home Depot, Curran said. The stations would cost an individual about $800 to purchase.
The city of Naperville obtained the charging stations as part of its federal matching grant for the Naperville Smart Grid Initiative, according to the city.
The raffle is open to any city of Naperville utility customer who owns an electric vehicle or plans to purchase one in the next six-months. Entries will be accepted until Aug. 24. Participation requires those who receive the stations to share data with the city for 12 months, Curran said.
The city plans to install a charging station available for public use at the surface parking lot on VanBuren Street, across from the city’s parking garage, he said. It hopes to have the charging station installed by September.
Contest rules and entry forms are available online. Entries may be submitted by mail or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or Kate Houlihan, Community Relations Division, City of Naperville Municipal Center, 400 S. Eagle St., Naperville IL 60540. Entries will consist of a completed, signed entry form and agreement.