Estonia Launches Nationwide Electric Vehicle Fast-Charging Network


Scarcely noticed in the wake of the much-discussed spat between Tesla CEO Elon Musk and New York Times reporter John Broder was the opening last week in Estonia of the world's first nationwide network of fast chargers for electric vehicles (EVs).

The network of 165 DC (direct current) quick-charging stations, produced and installed by Swiss engineering giant ABB, are strategically dispersed across the country. Along highways, the stations are no more than 60 kilometers (37 miles) apart, installed at gas stations, cafes, shops, and other high-visibility spots.

In towns, stations are installed at shopping centers, gas stations, post offices, banks, and parking lots. Every city of more than 5,000 inhabitants hosts at least one station; the capital, Tallinn, population 423,000, hosts 27 stations. The quick-charging stations can deliver a 90% charge to the battery in less than 30 minutes, according to KredEx, the national foundation that operates the EV network.

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