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A trio Ohio State University researchers set out to solve the riddle of where to install what type of chargers.
A trio Ohio State University researchers set out to solve the riddle of where to install what type of chargers.

Public Chargers: Getting More 'Bang' for the Buck

By Bill Moore

Installing public charging stations helps build consumer confidence in owning an electric car, but when government has only so much money to spend, what and where's the most cost effective type of charger to install and where?

Installing public charging stations helps build consumer confidence in owning an electric car. But when government has only so much money to spend, what's the most cost effective type of charger to install and where? Dr. Ramteen Sioshansi and his colleagues at Ohio State University set out to find out.

Dr. Ramteen Sioshansi is with OSU's Integrated Systems Engineering Department in Columbus. He and his colleagues, Xiaomin Xi and Vincenzo Marano, decided to tackle the Gordian Knot of where to install public charging stations for EVs. The reason is pretty straightforward.

ICE-driving, taxpaying John Q. Public wants their tax dollars spent productively. Research be damned that an easily accessible charging network is an important key to getting buyers to consider an EV option - that along with more vehicle choice, longer range, and 'affordable' sticker prices - the sight of empty charging stations built for "wealthy" elite EV owners at public expense doesn't sit well

Years ago now, Tesla realized that it would have to build a national network of fast-charging Superchargers along America's interstate highways. Similar charging corridors have been proposed and built along the East Coast, West Coast and even in parts of Texas and Tennessee. But what about the rest of the country?

As more and more state and local governments adopt to the reality that EVs are coming and that they need to begin preparing for them, those same planners and managers are wrestling with where to place them, what level of charging to install among the three grades, how many chargers are needed and critically, who's going to pay for it?

Dr. Sioshansi set out to answer some of these questions, using Columbus and the surrounding counties and state as his case study. OSU is also the home of the Center for Automotive Research. It's here where the famed Venturi Buckeye Bullet electric streamliners are built.

Sioshansi and his colleagues created a sophisticated set of algorithms to help identify the most cost-effective way to deploy the maximum number of public charging stations if government had just $1 million to spend or $3 million. Their findings appear in Transportation Research Part D and is entitled, "Simulation–optimization model for location of a public electric vehicle charging infrastructure."

EV World publisher Bill Moore spoke at length with Sioshansi about their research and what they learned. Their findings may come as a surprise, especially comparing the numbers of Level I (110V) and Level II (240V) charger they advocate.

You can listen to the entire 40-minute long dialogue using the embedded MP3 recording below or download the 10 MB file to your computer for playback on your favorite mobile device.

Times Article Viewed: 13959
Originally published: 23 Feb 2017

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