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dcbel's home energy station earns U.S. certification

The r16 can power homes with solar energy or the battery from an EV

IMAGE: Dcbel's r16
Dcbel's r16 home energy station. (Courtesy dcbel Inc.)

The r16 home energy station designed by Montreal-based dcbel Inc. has become the first certified residential bidirectional direct current electric vehicle (EV) charger in the U.S.

Over the course of two years, dcbel collaborated with Intertek, a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory program member, to validate the safety of the product across a wide range of conditions and scenarios, completing dozens of tests to meet UL 2231 and 9741 standards.

The r16 functions like a solar inverter for direct current to alternating current conversions, a bidirectional electric-vehicle direct current charger and AI-assisted energy management. It can power homes with solar energy or via the battery from an EV, freeing it from the grid and greenhouse gas-generating energy sources.

Last November, dcbel paired the r16 with LG batteries.

"dcbel is very proud to receive this trailblazing certification," CEO Marc-André Forget said in a statement. "It fulfills our mission to deploy a product that is both groundbreaking and affordable, while allowing homeowners to access cleaner energy and offset their electricity bills for the fastest possible return on investment.

"It's also universally compatible, so drivers are free to choose any EV along their journey."

The first r16 stations will be shipped in California and New York. Mass production will take place in Richardson, Tex.

BAE to provide electric drives for Quebec transit bus orders

U.K.-based BAE Systems will provide its Gen3 electric drive systems for the largest battery-electric bus order in North America, which involves Nova Bus and the Association du Transport Urbain du Quebec (ATUQ).

The order is for up to 1,229 battery-electric buses. BAE’s drive systems are components in the buses.

ATUQ represents public transportation organizations serving urban centres in Québec: Montréal, Laval, Longueuil and the greater metropolitan area, as well as Québec City, Lévis, Gatineau, Trois-Rivières, Saguenay and Sherbrooke. Together, they provide 99 per cent of the public transportation trips in the province.

“This order represents our collective commitment to improving air quality, meeting the provincial government's ambitious targets and contributing to Canada’s zero-emission future,” Marc-Andre Varin, general manager of ATUQ, said in a statement.

“BAE Systems has been with us from the beginning of our journey, starting with electric-hybrids and now the switch to all-electric buses. This is a big leap forward in our plans to provide sustainable transit service.”

In May, Nova Bus was awarded the contract, valued at up to $2.114 billion.

BAE has more than 16,000 propulsion systems in service on transit buses worldwide. Its electric propulsion technology is developed and serviced at facilities in Endicott, N.Y. in the U.S. and in Rochester, U.K.

FedEx Canada launches BrightDrop EVs

FedEx Canada announced it has incorporated the first 50 BrightDrop Zevo 600 electric delivery vehicles into its fleets servicing Toronto, Montreal, and Surrey, B.C.

The Zevo 600 is designed for last-mile deliveries, with an estimated range of up to 400 kilometres on a full charge. The 50 EVs are part of a larger agreement between FedEx and BrightDrop that will see FedEx incorporate 2,500 vehicles across its operations in the coming years, including more than 400 vehicles already in operation in Southern California.

To support the new vehicle technology, FedEx is installing charging infrastructure at Canadian facilities, including 80 charging stations already installed in the three EV launch markets.

“FedEx Express Canada is proud of the role we’re playing to help our company work toward the goal of carbon neutral operations globally by 2040,” Dean Jamieson, vice president of operations at FedEx Express Canada, said in a statement. “Working with companies like BrightDrop that are helping to build these solutions, right here in our own backyard, shows how Canada is helping to bring more sustainable solutions to life across a variety of industries.”

FedEx Canada had previously announced a goal of converting its entire parcel pickup and delivery (PUD) fleet to electric and/or zero-tailpipe emissions vehicles by 2040. It targets 50 per cent of its global PUD vehicle purchases to be electric by 2025 and 100 per cent by 2030.

The company is also piloting the BrightDrop TraceMove, an electric cart meant to assist couriers, in Toronto.

BrightDrop manufactures the Zevo 600s at GM’s CAMI assembly plant in Ontario.

Harnois Énergies orders hydrogen fuel cell trucks

Saint-Thomas, Que.-based Harnois Énergies has ordered five Peterbilt 579 hydrogen fuel cell trucks scheduled for delivery in early 2026.

The trucks are to be supplied by Peterbilt Motors Company, a subsidiary of PACCAR, whose Canadian division is headquartered in Mississauga.

"This exciting project offers the company a way to begin decarbonizing its transportation fleet and shows just how green hydrogen has a real future in Québec,” Serge Harnois, president and CEO of Harnois Énergies, said in a statement.

“Harnois Énergies is providing itself with the means to lead the energy transition. This investment is in perfect alignment with our vision to provide the right energy for the right vehicle."

Harnois Énergies has already developed a multi-energy fuelling station on Wilfred-Hamel Blvd. in Quebec City, which it states is the only location in the province where the public is able to buy green hydrogen for hydrogen-powered EVs.

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