The German–Indian start-up Nunam is working on a project with the Audi environment foundation to explore how modules made with high-voltage batterie can be reused after their car life cycle and become a viable second-life use case. Three electric rickshaws will be deployed early next year which are powered by AUDI AG ‘s e-tron battery modules from its test fleet.
The e-rickshaws powered by second-life batteries are scheduled to hit the roads in India for the first time in a pilot project in early 2023. There they will be made available to a non-profit organization to enable some women to use these electric rickshaws to transport their goods to market for sale.
Going one step further, the team plans to combine these second-life batteries with a solar powered charging station that also runs on 2nd life batteries, both from Audi e-tron preproduction vehicles.
Nunam is a non-profit start-up based in Berlin and Bangalore and is funded by the Audi Environmental Foundation. The start-up has developed the three prototypes in collaboration with the training team at Audi’s Neckarsulm site.
“The old batteries are still extremely powerful,” says Nunam cofounder Prodip Chatterjee. “When used appropriately, second-life batteries can have a huge impact, helping people in challenging life situations earn an income and gain economic independence – everything in a sustainable way.” “Car batteries are designed to last the life of the car. But even after their initial use in a vehicle, they still have a lot of their power,” Chatterjee explains. “For vehicles with lower range and power requirements, as well as lower overall weight, they are extremely promising. In our second-life project, we reuse batteries from electric cars in electric vehicles; you might call it electric mobility ‘lite’. In this way, we’re trying to find out how much power the batteries can still provide in this demanding use case.”
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