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EV Charging Transitioning to Paid

09/24/2018

The Adaptive Charging Network (ACN) for electric vehicles at Caltech's California Parking Structure has been a research project in Professor Steven Low's Netlab. The project has been collecting anonymized statistics (such as arrival time, departure time, energy charged, charging rates, etc.) to help develop algorithms for adaptive scheduling, learning and analytics, and software to optimize the charging infrastructure. During this time, the cost of electricity and the construction of the charging infrastructure have been covered by the Netlab project as well as by a Caltech start-up, PowerFlex, for users to freely charge their EVs. The project is now transitioning to commercial operation with PowerFlex providing the EV charging service. Netlab will continue to have access to anonymized statistics for research purposes.

The commercial operation is expected to begin November 1, 2018. Thereafter, all charging dispensers in the California Parking Structure will turn on only via the PowerFlex mobile app. EV drivers can download the PowerFlex mobile app from the iOS or Android app store to create a personal account. The cost of charging is a flat rate of $0.12 per kWh and will be collected via the PowerFlex mobile app. This rate covers the cost of electricity only. Additional parking fees apply. All users are required to display a valid Caltech parking permit.

Between now and November 1, 2018, when commercial operation begins, the default session energy—the energy drivers receive by plugging in their car and walking away—will gradually decrease to encourage everyone to use the mobile app. Once the transition concludes, EV drivers need to deposit funds (minimum of $10) via credit card to pay for their charging sessions in the California Parking Structure.

In addition to gaining access to EV charging at Caltech, PowerFlex app users will also have access to many PowerFlex charging stations at JPL, in Pasadena, and throughout the state.  For additional information, please contact PowerFlex at support@powerflex.com