If the process of electrification and upgrading of the charging infrastructure for electric cars plays a central role for Enel X in the development strategies, the same can be said of the role that the Enel Group business unit is carving out for itself in motorsport where in addition to Formula E and Moto E, ETCR has also been added, for which the charging infrastructures are provided . It is precisely in the electric tourism championship that the link between the world of cars and motorsport is more visible, united in the sign of electrification. We talked about it with Michele Cecchini, Head of eMotorsport of Enel X who also boasts experience in Ferrari and McLaren and with whom, in the course of our exclusive interview, we took stock of the energy transition between racing and automotive.
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The electrification of the boot goes hand in hand with your sporting commitment. Formula E, Moto E but also ETCR.
“Our commitment in the sports world is consolidated. Electrification in the world of motorsport is an activity that we want to pursue very seriously. We are committed to this on several fronts: from Formula E to Moto E, up to ETCR where we are suppliers of charging infrastructures. We are continuing to develop because there is nothing better than motorsport to test the technologies that will then be used in everyday electric mobility. The concept of technological acceleration applies very well in the sports field because here you have to do things well and quickly without forgetting that they will be translated into the mass market so the whole certification and preparation process must be followed but it is driven by a will. to change and advance this world. Motorsport may have been a bit unsustainable in the past, but now we are changing it and we will change it more and more. A central theme then I believe is that of security. Electrification, like all technologies, will have its difficulties and challenges, we want to be sure that they are mitigated, made less unpredictable. “
In this case, the link between automotive and motorsport is even more direct. How much of your road experience have you brought here?
“It is a particular balance. There are three factors to take into account: on the one hand there is what we knew and that comes from the first experience in Formula E, what comes back to us from the world of production cars and finally this new concept of integrating the infrastructure with a hydrogen generator. There has been a very intense exchange between motorsport and automotive, which has given very important results. In technological terms it is an incredible achievement. In the ETCR, for the first time it was possible to use a fuel cell generator connected directly to our charger which recharges the car optimized for this use. This is a new, extremely ambitious ecosystem that is working. “
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A new technology that makes its debut on the Piero Taruffi circuit, your electric mobility HUB.
“Doing all this in Vallelunga was fundamental for us. This circuit is the most fertile for this type of application, because not all circuits are ready yet. This is our laboratory and therefore we wanted to carry out the first experiment in a place where we could control and manage any small initial unforeseen events. “
How does this sophisticated charging system that debuted in ETCR work?
“We manage the charging part of the car. Our chargers, the JuicePump 120 race edition, are charging solutions tailored to the needs of the competition and ensure that the energy produced by the hydrogen generators is managed in the best possible way. There is a direct connection, both towards the car and in DC (direct current) directly towards the generators. With the concept of sustainability very clear, we try not to dissipate anything, even that small efficiency that could be gained between generator and charger. A virtuous cycle that always tries to improve itself. “
Ferrari and Lamborghini have announced the arrival of the first full electric. The whole sector is moving in this direction, is it the definitive turning point?
“Electrification is a gigantic transformation process. Perhaps it has never happened before such a change took place, with all the uncertainties of the case. At this point, however, I think it is inevitable. At a time when major car manufacturers are betting everything on electric cars, you must also focus on electric motorsport. Otherwise all the sports related to this industry where does it end up? The mechanism has now moved, you have to be good at realizing this change in the right way. “
How can you best communicate that this transition is inevitable?
“In this context, motorsport as it was seen before will have to change, not just because of electrification. Maybe we realized that something different had to be done because times are changing. Guys may need other stimuli. Even the long race format, with many laps, is perhaps no longer adequate. We have to rethink everything, motorsport is fun and therefore it must be remodeled on this. “