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SNAPSHOT2021 Jul 23, 2021

Technology improves the ROI of charging stations in public and company car parks

Aurelie Favresse

New technology makes it possible to manage charging points for electric cars better. The charging station gives a signal when the car is fully charged. If the driver does not move his car, he will be made aware according to the outlined policy. The system has been successfully rolled out in Knokke-Heist, among others.

Earlier this year, Geosparc launched a technology that meets the increasing demand for charging capacity in Belgium. As all commercial vehicles must be electric by 2026, the demand for charging stations in cities and municipalities is skyrocketing. One of the bottlenecks is that posts are often occupied by cars that are not charging.

Thanks to this technology, a driver receives a message when his car is fully charged. If he doesn't move the car, he will have to pay a higher parking fee – which will also keep non-electric drivers away from charging spaces. The system will inform users when there is a defect in the infrastructure or when a charging point is inaccessible due to road works. It monitors power supply and load capacity. The technology can be integrated into both new and existing charging stations.

Inside mobiliteit 888x500 Jan Verbruggen en Kris De Pril in Trends 100321

Data-driven decisions

“Our mission is to support policy with data,” says Kris De Pril of Geosparc. “With our technology, local authorities and fleet managers know which posts are occupied during which period. It becomes easier to determine if and where additional posts are needed. In Knokke-Heist, data showed that the charging poles were only charging 16% of the time. The number of poles was not an issue, so instead of installing more, they need to be used more efficiently. Policy can be geared to that”.

Road surface sensors enable you to see in real-time if there is a car in a parking space, and during what period. Geosparc’s software is currently being used at shop-and-go parking spaces in many Flemish cities. This technology is now integrated into electric charging stations, from CenEnergy for example.

The technology is also used for other purposes, such as optimizing car sharing.

Sustainable mobility

“Monopolizing charging stations will soon be a thing of the past”, says Jan Verbruggen from CenEnergy. "The lack of charging points is one of the obstacles to the electric car revolution. We need to manage our loading capacity better so that we can support sustainable mobility. That is perfectly possible from now on”.

Kris De Pril: “Initially, governments placed charging points at strategic locations, such as train stations. Later, charging stations were installed following requests from neighbourhoods or citizens. Now we are evolving towards a data-driven strategy based on traffic flows and occupancy rates of charging stations”.

The system is of great value for company car parks as well. The fleet or office manager receives a notification when a driver violates the parking policies. Today, Gumption is one of the happy users of Geosparc and CenEnergy’s co-created solution.

This article was first published in Gumption Snapshot Magazine. Order your own free copy!

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