This report details the product development process for three models of electric vehicle charging stations. Each station is identified by type of mounting unit: pole station, bollard station, and wall mounted station. The EVcharging stations use industry standard connections (J1772) and provide several options for power delivery.
“How long does it take to charge?” The time needed to charge an EV has a direct correlation to the power supplied. 240VAC will charge faster than 110VAC. On the other hand, our ECO-go chargers have onboard transformers and interim batteries that can charge up when not being used and then discharge into the vehicle batteries quickly. This is called fast-charge and is the hottest issue in the EV market.
The design process is based on systems engineering principles to ensure the successful development and market introduction of our ECO-go Chargers.
Concerns with global warming, oil shortages, and increasing gas prices, along with the rapid rise of more fuel-efficient vehicles, are clear indicators of changing consumer preferences and industry direction. As major automotive manufacturers begin to launch plug-in electric vehicles (EVs) in 2010, the future of transportation must shift to fundamentally cleaner and more efficient electric drive systems. With electric drive systems, the prime energy source can be flexible. It can be crude oil, natural gas, solar, wind power, coal, or nuclear power. The market will now have the opportunity to flex its muscles in the transportation sector, creating demand for cleaner and more efficient fuel sources. No longer will we be shackled to the price of a barrel of crude.
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So as electric cars hit the road, the big question is where will they refuel? There is very little infrastructure out there to support a rapid increase in electric car use. To this end, there has been increased funding by the government through the Department of Energy (DOE) to improve the needed infrastructure to support the consumer adoption of electric transportation.
Through the FreedomCAR and EV Project program funding has been made available to design and develop new charging technologies and begin to build an infrastructure. (US Department of Energy)
ECO-go designs and builds electric vehicle charging stations to be installed in this new infrastructure. New technology is making it feasible to rapidly charge batteries; add to this the improvement in the battery capabilities themselves, and there has been significant improvement in the technology.
Whether or not the infrastructure is ready, many automakers will be putting out electric cars, with an estimated 146,000 on the road by the end of 2012.
Tesla has sold a little more than 1,000 high-end electric sports cars and plans to offer a lower-priced sedan in the next few years. Nissan has its Leaf, and Ford aims to enter the market with an all-electric Focus in 2012. General Motors Co. will soon sell its part-electric Volt.
Ford plans to introduce five new electrified vehicles in North America by 2012, providing a range of products to meet a variety of customer needs. These include:
â€¢ A Transit Connect Electric small commercial van.
â€¢ A Ford Focus Electric passenger car debuting in 2011.
â€¢ Two next-generation lithium-ion battery hybrid-electric vehicles and a plug-in hybrid by 2012. (US Department of Energy)
Our target market is to work within the EV Project scope as described in the next section and provide charging station solutions to the 5 key areas that are slated for EV charging infrastructure. These 5 areas are Phoenix, San Diego, Portland, Seattle, and Tennessee. There are other markets that are developing charging infrastructures, such as Dallas TX, and Washington DC, but since the focus of the EV project is to build a solid infrastructure and to improve the acceptance of electric vehicles, initial project will be limited in scope to the targeted areas noted above. (Coulomb Technologies Web Site, 2010)
Figure 1 Electric Vehicle Market is Expanding
Today’s Drivers Main Concern
Will the charge last the drive? Everyone wants to know this. With few charging stations on U.S. roads, some worry that the cars will run out of juice before journey’s end. Myths and disinformation abound. New technology is extending the range of electric car batteries at a rapid pace. Suddenly “Fuel efficiency” is becoming Battery Range, and comparisons between gasoline fueled vehicles and electric vehicles is starting to provide a widening gap.
US Department of Energy grants totaling more than $115 million will help add thousands of charging stations in San Diego, Detroit, Washington, D.C., and Bellevue, Wash., among other places. companies partner with the DOE and each other to co-fund high-risk research (US Department of Energy) needed to develop the component and infrastructure technologies necessary to enable a full range of affordable cars and light trucks, and the fueling infrastructure for them, that will reduce the dependence of the nation’s personal transportation system on imported oil and minimize harmful vehicle emissions, without sacrificing freedom of mobility and freedom of vehicle choice.
The EV Project
The EV Project is intended to provide the basic infrastructure for electric vehicle charging stations in 5 major metropolitan areas including 11 cities where electric vehicles are likely to be readily accepted and quickly adopted. These areas are:
San Diego, CA
And Nashville, TN
The EV project intends to install more than 10,000 Level 2 chargers and 260 Level 3 Fast Chargers to support the 4,700 Nissan Leaf Cars expected to be on the road by the end of 2012 (ETEC, ELECTRIC TRANSPORTATION ENGINEERING CORPORATION, 2010).
We conducted a SWOT analysis to make sure our organization and product would be viable for development. Since our plan is to supply electric vehicle chargers as part of the EV Project, our target market becomes the company with the contract to build the infrastructure. This company is ETEC, part of ECOtality of North America. (ETEC, ELECTRIC TRANSPORTATION ENGINEERING CORPORATION, 2010) Our goal is to win the contract as the supplier of choice for the charging stations. This will provide us with a significant advantage down the road because our chargers will be installed early in the adoption of electric cars. This is the best way to gain market share for us – to get it from the beginning.
Electric Vehicle and Vehicle Charger Technology
This section describes the basic electric vehicle technologies that are either available in the marketplace or coming to market in the near future. The focus of this section is on street-legal vehicles that incorporate a battery energy storage device that can connect to the electrical grid for the supply of some or all of its fuel energy requirements. Two main vehicle configurations are described. Vehicle categories and the relative size of their battery packs are discussed in relationship to recommended charging requirements.
Electric Vehicle Configurations
Figure 2 Battery Electric Vehicle
A typical BEV is shown in the block diagram above. Since the BEV has no other significant energy source, a battery must be selected that meets the BEV range and power requirements. BEV batteries are typically an order of magnitude larger than the batteries in hybrid electric vehicles.
Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
PHEVs are powered by two energy sources. The typical PHEV configuration utilizes a battery and an internal combustion engine (ICE) powered by either gasoline or diesel. Within the PHEV family, there are two main design configurations, a Series Hybrid, as depicted in Figure 2-2, and a Parallel Hybrid, as depicted in Figure 2-3. The Series Hybrid vehicle is propelled solely by the electric drive system, whereas the Parallel Hybrid vehicle is propelled by both the ICE and the electric drive system. As with a BEV, a Series Hybrid will typically require a larger and more powerful battery than a Parallel Hybrid vehicle in order to meet the performance requirements of the vehicle solely based on battery power.
Manufacturers of PHEVs use different strategies in combining the battery and ICE. For example, the Chevy Volt utilizes the battery only for the first several miles, with the ICE generating electricity for the duration of the vehicle range. Other PHEVs may use the battery power for sustaining motion and the ICE for acceleration or higher-energy demands at highway speeds
Relative Battery Capacity
Battery size, or capacity, is measured in kilowatt hours (kWh). Battery capacity for electric vehicles will range from as little as 3 kWh to as large as 40 kWh or more. Typically, PHEVs will have smaller battery packs because they have more than one fuel source. BEVs rely completely on the storage from their battery pack for both range and acceleration and therefore require a much larger battery pack than a PHEV for the same size vehicle.
Battery Charging Time
The amount of time to fully charge an EV battery is a function of the battery size and the amount of electric power or kilowatts (kW) that an electrical circuit can deliver to the battery. Larger circuits, as measured by voltage and amperage, will deliver larger amounts of kW. The common 120 volts AC (VAC), 15 amp circuit will deliver at minimum 1.2 kW to a battery. A 240 VAC, 40 amp circuit (similar to the circuit used for household appliances like dryers and ovens) will deliver at minimum 6.5 kW to a battery. The Table below provides information on several different on-road highway speed electric vehicles, their battery pack size, and charge times at different power levels to replenish a depleted battery.
At ECO-go we aim to provide the most advanced, easy to use, electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure that will deliver electric fuel to EVs.. Our vehicle- charging infrastructure will provide networked charging stations with charge points ranging in ability to charge from 120 Volt to 240 Volt AC charging and up to 500 Volt DC charging. Our charging stations will be installed mainly in public places, municipalities and Utilities, Municipalities. We focus on providing The Charge Point Network that is readily available, reliable, open and easy to use. Also, we will be providing a platform for utilities, municipalities and corporations so that they can deliver the most cost effective charging services for electric vehicle (EV) drivers.
The charge point at Charging Stations delivers controlled power to effectively and efficiently charge electric vehicles (EV). All our electric charging stations will support international power and connector standards and inculcates pleasant aesthetics and sturdy construction making them an ideal solution for home and for outdoor public applications. Each station is embedded with an on-board computer, a fluorescent display; a standard based RFID (radio frequency identifier) reader, and a utility-grade meter providing precise, bi-directional energy measurement. All stations are network-enabled, capable of reporting energy usage and communicating over the network with software and network services. The basic charging station structure will include bollard, pole mount, wall mount and home/ residential mount. (ETEC, ELECTRIC TRANSPORTATION ENGINEERING CORPORATION, 2010)
System Operational Requirements
EVSEs provided by our company will comply with the needs of the full range of vehicles requiring access to electrical charging, including plug-in hybrid electric vehicles(PHEVs), battery electric vehicles(BEVs).
Performance and Physical Parameters
We will make EVSE in two configuration a specialized cord set or as a Wall or Pedestal mounted Box and the specification sheet for different models for equipments provided by our company is as follows. (Coulomb Technologies Web Site, 2010)
Figure 3 Electric Vehicle Charger Models Offered
Our Company will meet the appropriate building and safety codes and industry standards, and will be certified and marked by a nationally-recognized testing laboratory.
EVSEs provided by our company will accommodate in all key locations including residential garages, commercial garages and parking lots, transit hubs, workplace locations, and on-street parking in residential and non-residential neighborhoods.
Battery Charging Time
The amount of time required to fully charge an EV battery is a function of the battery size and the amount of electric power or kilowatts (kW) that an electrical circuit can deliver to the battery. Charging time for different equipments manufactured by our company are as follows:
3h 20 min
6h 20 min
1h 45 min
1h 15 min
13h 20 min
2h 30 min
4h 10 min
3 h 40min
29h 10 min
5h 25 min
9h 10 min
7 h 45 min
Proper ventilation is required wherever an EVSE will be installed as heat energy will radiate in charging of a car. Also an extended EV cord may present a tripping hazard, so the EVSE should be located in an area of minimum pedestrian traffic or near to the EV inlet.
Customer Service and system management program:
Inside support: Internet and on the phone support to customers. Office support will also be provided. Need management structure and key leaders assigned.
The operational availability (A0) for the overall system including all operational infrastructure shall be atleast 99.5% and the MTBM shall be 5 years or greater and MDT shall be 30 minutes or less.
EVSE’s shall be fully operational in an all temperatures and conditions.
Corrective and preventive maintenance shall be performed on the system itself where the system is operating and used by the customer or at an intermediate location.
The EVSE typically will not require routine maintenance. However, all usable parts can wear, and periodic inspections should be conducted to ensure that all parts remain in good working order. Periodic cleaning may be required, depending upon local conditions. Testing of different components should be conducted periodically. Repair of accidental damage or purposeful vandalism also may be required.
Planning and Organization
At ECO-go we direct all our efforts towards fulfilling our mission based on our company vision. From our vision and mission, projects are planned, organized, and implemented and controlled. Our departments are organized as a functional organization designed to ensure our success and the complete satisfaction of our customers.
Our Vision is to become the leading manufacturer and provider for affordable, compatible, user friendly EVSE in USA.
Our Mission is to dedicate ourselves to our customers by giving them high quality and reliable EVSE that suits and serve their everyday needs.
By understanding the product life cycle, we can more readily identify and understand additional benefits upstream in the supply chain and downstream in customer organizations or during end-of-life management (disposal).
Figure 4 Life Cycle Stages Used in Product Development
Detailed Design and Development
Detailed design is the fleshing out of the preliminary design in the previous step. Here the design team already has their objectives defined and they know the basic elements of the system. Now they are at the step where they can completely define the product.
Design Elements Overview
System operational requirements defined
System trade-offs documented
Systems specification completed
System engineering management plan completed
Logistic Support, Ecological, Public Safety, Sustainability
Specifications are actualized and basic elements come together to make the system. Such elements include hardware, software, people, consumables, raw materials, and all the “things” necessary to make a product come to fruition. System elements are inter-related to each other through the product, and all are necessary for a successful design. If any part of the system elements is missing, then the design is not complete. Example of system elements is provided in the figure below.
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The most important part about system design at the detail level is to get all the right people together to look at the design and provide input. There are many elements to consider for the specification, and each stakeholder has a different perspective on these. The process engineer is concerned with the technical performance, the hardware engineer is concerned with everything fitting within an allocated space, the reliability engineer is concerned with the fault tolerance of the product and failure modes.
Figure 5 Product Design Functional Stakeholders
Adapted from (Costello Design, Ic.)
In the product design process, detailed design comes under the category of Synthesis. Here is where the bulk of the work gets done. All the engineers have been given the specs and their marching orders, and now they go off to complete their designs. The overall system must be broken down into subsystems, subsystems must be partitioned into assemblies. Modularity and reusability should be considered in creating subsystems. Subsystems should be created so that they can be reused in future products, and easily swapped during service.
For redesign, subsystems should be created to maximize the use of existing, particularly commercially available products (COTS). Engineers must also decide whether to make or buy the subsystems, first trying to use commercially available subsystems. If nothing satisfies all the requirements, then modification of an existing subsystem should be considered. If this proves unsatisfactory, then some subsystems will have to be designed in-house. Engineers designing one subsystem must understand the other subsystems that their system will interact with.
During our course of project we have laid emphasis on the above mentioned factors and taken them into consideration. It takes many stakeholders to make a successful product. Each functional area is responsible for a portion of the system design factors. When all departments work well together the system design comes together more smoothly.
Product Development Checklist
Design review checklist rev: September 28, 2010
System operational requirements defined
For outside use by public
Meets safety requirements
Able to be permitted in most local jurisdictions without retrofit.
Charge in quick-time – quick-charge is enough for 30 mi. in 15 min.
Competition calls this “80% – referring to Nissan leaf
Back up power system
Cost is 10,000 per. Without solar option
Full charge time less than 2 hours
Size requirements met
MTBF 5 years
MTBM 3 months or greater
All service is done by the dealer due to high voltage
Charging stations have wi-fi signal to indicate off-line status
Hardware life cycle
Power supply and charging systems will require global compatibility
Vendors will supply locally to lower cost
For instance, chargers to US market get power supply and charging adapters (outlets/plug) for US market
Chargers to India get kit shipped with different power supply and adapters
Reliability acceptable for vendors sourced
Component safety certification acceptable for vendors sourced
Software life cycle.
Design requirements are complete
Test plan is created
Test plan completed
Labels use ISO internationally accepted symbols
Shows all directions in 3 steps or less.
System trade offs documented
Market value vs. cost of design evaluated for public use plugs
Wiring code analysis completed
Systems specification completed
Detailed specs on each lifecycle completed
Major subsystem specs written
System engineering management plan completed
Engineering management analysis completed
Marketing plans compiled
Financial model ready
Design accepted by upper management
Preliminary install manual completed
Operation labels/instructions finalized
Maintenance manual, preliminary completed including
Customer service center ready
Instructions and checklists completed
Escalation program completed
Ecological requirements met
Energy consumption report complete
All parts recyclable
Recycling procedure completed
No public safety concerns
Location/ planning involves stakeholders
Economic Feasibility Determined
Profit margin met
Sustainability Requirements met
Critical parts have at least 2 sources of supply
Single source supplier profit margins met
Disaster planning complete
Charge stations are maintained at three different levels. Each of these three levels of maintenance and support infrastructure are needed to provide the level of customer support needed to maintain the chargers. Since these chargers are out in the public, they are expected to be working all the time. Customers do not want to show up to charge their cars and find the units down for repair. This is the main reason for
Level One — Organizational Maintenance:
The primary location of the system where the charging stations will be maintained is at the install service station or the install site. Tools, parts and required software are supplied by company in order to maintain charging stations. At charging stations owners will provide visual inspection to verify the unit is in proper working order.
Level Two — Intermediate Maintenance:
This level of maintenance requires special tools to maintain chargers that cannot be handled by owners. Special training will be provided by company trainers to technicians who will handle damage/repair. Problems that require parts replacement are swapped in place and the charger can then be returned to service. The defective parts are returned to the parts depot for defect analysis, repair, or disposal as needed.
Level Three – Supplier/Manufacture/Depot Maintenance:
Service facilities are available at major infrastructure cities in the EV Project. This will maximize turn around and reduce mean time for maintenance. Service facilities stock all major parts as well as a select number of replacement units based on the install base in the area. Here the entire charger can be removed, replaced, and sent to the repair depot where major repairs can be handled. This also provides a local access point for service technicians to provide support to the chargers in their service area.
Detail tuning, supply support, rebuild and overload from intermediate and organizational maintenance are accomplished at depot/manufacturer’s stations.
Due to the complexity of our project, we wanted to take into account the possibility of the project extending beyond its schedules, or needing to be completed earlier than scheduled for unforeseen reasons. We established the following project duration times:
Optimistic Time = 20 months
Scheduled Time = 24 months
Pessimistic Time = 32 months
We used these times to calculate the expected mean time, te, for the overall project by using:
Then we calculated the standard deviation of the project duration as:
From there were we able to construct the following probability distribution that reflected the probability of completing our project under certain conditions.
PERT Graph showing Normal Distribution
20 wks 24 wks 32 wks
Figure 6 PERT Probability Distribution
ECO-go is partnering with the major funders of the electric vehicle charging station infrastructure; namely eTec. Our plan is to enter the market early in order to gain acceptance and become the public standard adopted in the future. Like right-hand and left-hand drive; it’s who enters the market first that gets the market share: it may not be the same world-wide, but it’s pretty close.
We used the INCOSE SECAM process to develop and to assess our product development process. We are proud to be using the leading standard in systems engineering as the basis for our product design process. Our pole mounted, bollard, and wall mounted units are capable of charging any electric vehicle with a J1772 connector. The other end of the connector is adaptable to the installation requirements desired (i.e. 110VAC or 240 VAC). With good planning and aggressive scheduling we plan to be on the market at the right time to be successful. Early implementation of testing and control will keep us on the track to successful completion.
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