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Charging network optimized for Light Electric Vehicles (LEVs)

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - PowerShare (Charging network optimized for Light Electric Vehicles (LEVs))

Reporting period: 2018-10-01 to 2019-02-28

Due to growing population with growing urbanisation tendency, transportation is a major burden for modern cities. In Europe, using cars (even electric cars) is not the most optimal way of individual travelling in cities, due to busy roads, constant traffic jams, and difficult parking. The spreading of so-called Light Electric Vehicles (LEVs) represents one of the best solutions to the current challenges of urban transportation. However, the major obstacle of the spreading of LEVs in European cities is the lack of charging networks, resulting in too short range of the vehicles. Light electric vehicles, like bicycles, scooters, Segway usually have standard electric plugs (230 V in Europe), thus they are not chargeable at power stations for electric cars. Currently, LEV users charge their vehicles typically at home. Theoretically, LEVs could be charged at any public plugs, i.e. at coffeeshops, supermarkets, office buildings, etc…. However, vehicles usually cannot be taken inside urban houses, e.g. they do not fit to elevators. Furthermore, they may need special electric requirements (high current, adequate fuse, etc…).

Our company, Servo Movement Ltd, aims to commercialise Servo PowerShare, a community electric power sharing system designed for charging light electric vehicles (LEVs) in the streets. In the current project we aim to examine both the technical and business feasibility of our project and define the next actions.
In the Phase 1 project we studied the technical feasibility of our project. We designed and made the first series of prototypes and used them in our customer behaviour study in the city of Veszprém. Based on the experiences and feed-back for users we made a second design and implemented the second prototype for the PowerShare stations. The cost of production was also estimated. We performed a detailed customer behavioural study in the city of Veszprém. Technically, the validation was successful, the stations worked satisfactorily during the operation. The user experience was collected from selected users, who participated in a detailed questionnaire survey after the pilot. The main feed-back was very positive form the different users aged from 22-72, including students, business person, people with reduced mobility. Several practical suggestions were given, which are implemented in our next prototype series. We also studied the legal framework on electricity sales for selected countries: Hungary, Germany, Belgium, Poland as well as the regulation requirements for the Servo PowerShare station. Risks assessment was also carried out defining mitigation plan for major risks. Finally, we made detail plan for an SME Instrument Phase 2 application. As a result of all these actions, our business plan was updated.
According to our market study, Servo PowerShare is the first community electric power sharing system in the world, which primarily serves the charging light electric vehicles (LEVs) in the street, and consequently it facilitates the wide-spreading of LEVs in the cities. Our innovative business model connects all stakeholders: users, electricity providers, cities, and hosts of Servo PowerShare Points (e.g. buildings owners, shopping centers, restaurants, etc…). Our company, Servo Movement will provide the standardised, high-quality PowerShare devices, their installation and maintenance, the smartphone application, and will operate the whole PowerShare system technically and administratively. The electricity works companies currently focus on building a charging network for electric cars and busses, while light electric vehicle charging network is not in their interest today. However, they will highly benefit from a standardise charging solution, such as Servo PowerShare, which will ensure the system safety and accurate, transparent payment structure.
As an impact of the project, servo hosts, i.e. offices, houses, supermarkets, etc, will obtain new revenue sources and gain new clients or clients with new habits (shopping and charging at the same time). This will be a game-changer, indicating new business strategies. For municipalities, our solution, will promote the wide-spreading of LEVs, contributing for greener cities and regions, which also an important social benefit. The success project will impact considerably our company, promoting our growth. The total expected margin in 5 years after fully commercial operation will exceed 10 million euros, while the number of employees will increase to 76.
Image of PowerShare