Project ‘Charging Energy Hubs’ awarded to accelerate the electrification of the logistics sector

June 30, 2023

Dutch government officials announced today that the consortium led by Heliox seeking funding for the project ‘Charging Energy Hubs' has been approved for a grant by the National Growth Fund. In a display of unified innovation, Heliox, an industry leading fast charging solutions provider, has joined forces with 29 companies and knowledge institutions to develop the ‘Charging Energy Hubs’ project, an initiative aiming to accelerate the electrification of the logistics sector through collaboration, research and innovation. The consortium includes key players such as Shell, Prodrive, DAF, DAMEN, Scholt Energy, Firan, ElaadNL, Dynniq Energy, and TNO.

Michael Colijn, CEO of Heliox shares: “We are thrilled to receive the support of the National Growth Fund as we accelerate the transition to sustainable mobility, reinforcing the Netherlands as a powerhouse in the logistics and eMobility sector. Cooperation among stakeholders in the value chain is crucial, and as Heliox, we are eager to lead the charge in this transformative project.”

With zero-emission zones set to transform urban logistics by 2025, the demand for electric transport is expected to exponentially increase. However, the challenge lies in the limited capacity of the electrical grid to accommodate the increasing demand for high-powered charging infrastructure. To address this challenge, the project envisions an efficient use of smart energy systems to maximize grid efficiency through smart energy solutions.

These decentralized energy systems act as a vital link between electricity consumers and suppliers. By seamlessly integrating charging infrastructure, renewable energy and other energy sources, energy storage, and local consumers, these charging energy hubs allow flexibility during peak demand or grid balancing issues. This solution alleviates grid congestion while ensuring a solid business case for charging infrastructure investments.

The Netherlands eMobility sector currently stands at the forefront of Europe with strong export potential and a surge in job creation. To maintain this leadership in a rapidly expanding industry and achieve climate ambitions, it is crucial to promote new partnerships that foster electric mobility, construct cutting edge charging infrastructure, and drive innovations in energy optimization systems.

Thomas de Boer, President of Shell Commercial Road Transport: “Electrification of the heavy-duty transport sector is crucial to decarbonizing the sector. We are proud to participate in the ‘Charging Energy Hubs’ project in the Netherlands, a market that has been a shining star, leading the energy transition charge. We look to develop innovative solutions to tackle major challenges such as grid congestion in relation to high-power charging to give the logistics sector confidence in Battery Electric Vehicles.”

Paul van Nunen, Director of Brainport Development: "The logistics sector faces an enormous challenge in becoming more sustainable. The transition to battery electric vehicles requires an additional capacity of the Dutch electricity grid, which is already increasingly subject to balancing and capacity problems. Brainport Development is proud that it, together with our partner RAI Automotive Industry NL, has been able to bring together the right players in the value chain to develop the smart solutions that are needed to accelerate the transition toward a sustainable mobility system."

The 29 entities participating in this project are: AME, DAF, DAMEN, DC Systems, DENS, Dynniq, FIER, Firan, Fontys, HAN, Heliox, Fluidwell, KEMA, Maxem, NKL, Prodrive Technologies, Recoy, Renewable Energy Factory (REF ), Rocsys, Scholt Energy, Shell, Stichting ElaadNL, Sycada, TNO, TSN Groen, Eindhoven University of Technology, Van Berkel Logistics, Van Kessel, XYZ Dynamics, Zero Emissions Services (ZES). The project coordination is supported by Brainport Development and RAI Automotive Industry NL.