Category: Start-up of the Year
Winner: etaLINK 3000, Wiferion GmbH
The IFOY AWARD 2020 in the category “Start-up of the Year” goes to Wiferion, formerly Blue Inductive. The international jury selected etaLINK 3000 as the first market-ready and 100 percent contactless wireless charging system for industrial electric vehicles as the best new release in a strong start-up competition.
Source: IFOY AWARD / Big Entertainment Videoproduction / Wiferion
Start-up of the Year 2020
The jury’s decision was based on the outstanding customer benefits and high market relevance in combination with equally high product quality. “The etaLINK 3000 inductive charging system is a fully operational innovation that can revolutionise everyday life in the warehouse enormously and significantly reduce costs for companies”, the jury wrote.
The system for the automatic CAN-controlled charging of modern battery systems enables fast and flexible installation by means of base plates, which no longer requires any infrastructure measures. The charging process starts in less than a second. Once this is complete, the driverless transport system or the forklift truck can continue and the system switches off automatically.
A special feature of etaLINK 3000 is its outstanding efficiency of 93 percent. The German start-up company from Freiburg im Breisgau has succeeded in eliminating the disadvantages of wireless power transmission. It manages without plug and sliding contacts and is protected against environmental influences by the IP67 class. Intermediate charging of the batteries is possible, so that charging processes can be flexibly integrated into the intralogistics processes in the warehouse.
The intelligent distribution of the charging cycles and current peak capping ensure significantly lower costs for battery procurement and the energy itself. Spare parts and downtimes as well as regular maintenance are also a thing of the past. In addition, retrofitted electrified industrial trucks and AGVs can also be connected to the inductive charging system. Downtimes are reduced, battery costs decrease and the charging process becomes more economical.
The history of Wiferion began in 2015, when the four former Freiburg Fraunhofer ISE researchers (Institute for Solar Energy Systems) Benriah Goeldi, Johannes Mayer, Florian Reiners and Johannes Tritschler laid the foundation stone for the future Blue Inductive GmbH. In October 2015, the etaLINK 3000 product development started and in April 2016 the company was founded. Since 2018 the company is in serial production with the product. It changed its name to Wiferion in 2019.