Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

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jonescg
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Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Inspired by our long, slow drive to Esperance last June, the WA branch will launch a fundraiser to install 50 kW DC fast chargers between Perth and Esperance!

https://chuffed.org/project/evhwy
(link works now)

The goal is lofty, but I believe we can meet it before Easter 2020. We are looking for hosts between Perth and Esperance who are keen to support a charger at their premises. Servos, pubs, caravan parks and shopping centres - please get in touch!

Horizon Power are putting their marketing muscle behind it, as well as offering in-kind support for network connection analysis.

Corporate donors are essential for this to succeed, so we will be courting businesses and institutions in the Southern Wheatbelt seeking their support.

In the meantime, I'm working on some cool Cloisonne keychains in nickle green and cobalt blue...

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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by antiscab »

This link worked for me: https://chuffed.org/project/evhwy
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Bump!
Just a reminder that this campaign is still running and in need of some donors :)
https://chuffed.org/project/evhwy
We are very close to ordering our first charger and if things pan out right, we could be seeing the first charger installed in Hyden!
Hyden is 330 km from Perth, and 380 km from Esperance. So for anyone in a Tesla or a Kona, you can get to Esperance with one charge in Hyden.
For everyone else, you might want to stop in Brookton or Corrigin for an hour, and again in Ravensthorpe for afternoon tea.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by reecho »

The first charger has gone in at Lake Grace. Well done....!
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

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Hi everyone, quick update on this project. We've raised $77,000 and with that, bought two 50 kW DC fast chargers, one of which has been installed in Lake Grace (above) and the other is destined for Ravensthorpe. Ravensthorpe has been a difficult place to get a charger installed, as the council is very indifferent and the power supply out there is weak. Moreover, the local network is small and inconveniently located for the best charging sites.
Nevertheless, we have had council approval to use the Museum and Information Centre as the site for the charger, and the DQA with Western Power was submitted months ago. They finally came back with a price for a supply upgrade - $96,350 exc. GST.
This was not unexpected, given the large amount of undergrounding necessary. The plan is to take power from further down the same side of the street and run 240 mm2 LV supply up the south side of South Coast Highway up to the corner of the Information Centre. From here, the dome must be located on the road reserve, which is council land, and needs a new CT meter.
There are a few issues with the proposal as drawn, but we're expecting clarification shortly.
So, how are we going to pay for this? Remembering that the nearly $26,000 installation cost of the Lake Grace charger was generously paid for by Lake Grace. Ravensthorpe Shire Council are nowhere near as forward-thinking, and will not pay any more than the monthly cost of an electricity account for the charger.
Galaxy Resources who run the lithium mine have committed about $12k and Horizon Power have said they would match this. The AEVA fundraising tin has about $8k left in it, so call it $32k. We need another $75k, especially since we'll need to find additional funds to pay for the installation of the charger itself. I will try First Quantum Resources (nearby nickel mine) again...

I'm chatting with Synergy tomorrow about the prospect of sharing the costs associated with this charger site. The WA Electric Highway network will be rolling through town in the next 18 months, and it was probably slated to have a 75 kW charger installed in town. If we have a 50 kW charger installed using enough copper to manage a 75 kW charger, it might be possible to unbolt our charger and take it somewhere else (like Brookton). The WA network charger can simply take its place.

Ravensthorpe is a real crossroads in WA, and it's 200 km from anywhere, so it's really the biggest gap that needs filling. Lets hope we can have it filled in time for the wildflower season!
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by g4qber »

@jonescg
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Well it can't hurt given the number of EVs on the road in WA has probably doubled since we first started the pitch. But that's a lot of money to muster.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by antiscab »

are we expecting ravensthorpe to get much use for the near future?

would a biodiesel gen set be a better solution in the interim? at least until use has been proven

I imagine the WA electric highway network will have more resources (money) that the perth to espereance highway
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Biodiesel generator is a last resort, and we've come this far. Ravensthorpe is a crucial location which absolutely needs a fast charger as it's 200 km from anywhere, but on the way to somewhere. So the cost of hard-wiring a grid connected charger will be worth it in the long run. If we can get commitment from Synergy/Western Power/Horizon that we'll share the cost of the network upgrades then it's the best option to follow through with.

If these discussions fall apart, we might as well get a synchronous generator-charger installed so it's easy for the host to manage.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Sigh.

If a suicide note was a town, it's gotta be Ravensthorpe.

We have tried the council, the caravan park, the supermarket, the grain silo, the Pioneer park, the main street, the visitors centre and the servo, and literally nobody in this town wants a 50 kW charger. We've raised money and gone and bought a $35,000 charger, and have at least $12,000 of additional funding commitments to get it installed, yet nobody wants it. Darren at the BP has a great spot, good power, easiest install ever, but refuses to take my calls (assuming everything else is OK).

The trouble is, Ravensthorpe is an absolutely crucial town on the route to Esperance. Without that charger, the longest stretch is 375 km from Esperance to Lake Grace, and even Lake Grace is 330 km from Perth's inner northern suburbs.

We can try Lake King, which is only 115 km from Lake Grace, but makes for a 260 km stretch to Esperance. Certainly possible in an Ioniq under ideal conditions, but a headwind would make this a stretch. Likewise Munglinup service station - but it's barely 100 km out of Esperance.

Perhaps we can put this charger somewhere on the Nullarbor since there's still a big gap there. Or even Cunderdin? Kellerberrin? Southern Cross?
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by Chuq »

Excuse my lack of local knowledge, but given Ravensthorpe is scheduled to get a charging site on the state government electric highway, would that make the Lake King idea not a plan B but maybe the more preferred option?
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by brunohill »

I tried to explain to some of the businesses and two of the local councils here about the advantages of installing some (cheap) destination chargers, especially as they winged so much about the Hume Freeway bypassing town years ago and all the business they would lose. They could just not comprehend it and I could just not understand it.
The Nullarbor sounds good to me.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

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Is there maybe a small town within cooee of Ravensthorpe that might relish the extra traffic stopping in town for a while? Looking at Google Maps, would Munglinup be too far? Or Jerdacuttup?
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

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Charles, yes Ravey will be getting one as part of the WA network, but not for another 2 or 3 years. And because its the government they can both force the council to accept it, and pay for it. Until then, we have no other options really.

Munglinup is like Lake King; not too far down the road from the last place, but too far away from the destination. I don't know how much power they have either, as they are on the fringe of the Horizon network.

Lake King might be outlr last resort.

I think Ravey has been burnt by promises unkept in the past, so they're deeply suspicious of anything new.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by coulomb »

jonescg wrote: Thu, 03 Feb 2022, 06:56I think Ravey has been burnt by promises unkept in the past, so they're deeply suspicious of anything new.
Or maybe there's a retired oil baron on the council. Or a local Facebook page is spreading Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Well I finally got through to the proprietor at BP - he's still keen, but doesn't want to be involved in any way as he's too busy. Fair enough.
We have a local electrician interested in helping, because I sure won't stop badgering until it's installed.

So we're back on again!
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

March 4th it shall be installed!
Only set to 35 kW given the current supply, but better than a 5 hour wait. Anyway, the Ioniq will take a full hour at full power, so it's not like it matters much for me.
An application has been made to Western Power to upgrade the supply to 50 kW, so probably a new supply of 16 mm² XPLE aerial bundle.

[ Edited Coulomb: kWh → kW, fixed typo, mm2 → mm², link for XPLE. ]
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

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Something to get excited about :)
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by Chuq »

Good news! Where was it in the end? Did you find a place in town or go for somewhere just outside?
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Yeah at the BP servo across the road in the High-Flow diesel filling area.
Set to 35 kW for now, until WP get back to us with a cost for the upgrade of overhead power anyway.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by mpfl »

Uff. Given I barely managed to get to Kojonup in my Kona the one time I went for a drive to Albany, I'm not sure about my ability to get to Lake Grace.

That being said, I got my new battery pack since that trip so perhaps I should do another range test.
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Re: Fundraising for the Perth to Esperance Electric Highway!

Post by jonescg »

Just got the letter of authorization for the power upgrade to the charger at Ravensthorpe - Hopefully the upgrade won't cost too much, but 50 kW is better than 20.
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