Electric Car Charger
Electric car chargers don't have any stereotypical shapes yet, so as a design challenge it was quite interesting for the team. From the users' aspect, an EV charging station might be perceived as an alternative for a fuel dispenser. For electrical engineers or EV-enthusiasts, it's rather a purely functional electrical cabinet. But is also functions as an urban element: a three-dimensional sign that indicates a place where one can charge their electric vehicle.
Easy, clear user flow and maximized functionality was the essential inspiration.
UNIQUE PROPERTIES / PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
DC chargers are fairly new to the city scape. eCharger is designed to be seen but stay moderate. We approached the design problem with an integrated perspective: the physical and digital interface, as well as the enclosure, was treated as a complex design challenge. The outcome is vandal-proof (fit IK 10 standards) and weather proof (IP 45).
DC chargers are the fastest way to charge car batteries. In only about 20 minutes they can charge cars up to 80%. Our team's duty was to design the enclosure and the user interface and experience for this product.
OPERATION / FLOW / INTERACTION:
After an RFID identification, the interface leads the user through the charging process. Two vehicles can be charged in the same time. All visual interaction is concentrated on the recognizable and distinctive glass-panel interface. The top LED stripes, recognizable from a distance, show if the charger is available. The screen is located in a height easily visible and accessible for wheelchair users as well. Physical interaction is carried out through pushbuttons in order to provide easy operation in extreme weather conditions when the screen is wet or the users wear gloves.
PROJECT DURATION AND LOCATION:
Budapest, Hungary 2013-2015
FITS BEST INTO CATEGORY:
Vehicle, Mobility and Transportation Design
PRODUCTION / REALIZATION TECHNOLOGY:
Folded sheet metal, glass interface
SPECIFICATIONS / TECHNICAL PROPERTIES:
580 x 680 x 1945
They come with AC, ChAdeMo and CCS chargers.
SMS based charge activation
Web based monitoring and access for operators
Installation: floor- installed, fix cables
DC charger, electric car, transportation design, interface
Prior the design process we researched electric cars, their sockets and already existing user flows in the industry and beyond. As this is a young field in design, we had to implement a qualitative research. We discussed user opinions and technical details with our client.
As a brand new category in the transportation industry, we had no prior image, especially in the interface and experience design part. This freedom is both liberating and challenging: to create something new that soon will be used widely.
TEAM MEMBERS (1) :
Maform Design Team