Day eight kicked off once again with our 9 am Expo. This one focused on industry resource for fleet specing and procurement. Mike from Sourcewell outlined their platform that allows fleet to acquire what they need with full assurance they have gone through a competitive bidding process to assure the lowest possible price. Nate from Mike Albert Fleet Solutions provided a full range of fleet management services targeting small to medium-size fleets and have developed a strong specialization on procurement of many types of electric vehicles for fleets of all types and sizes. Janet from AutoFlex Fleet discussed their procurement and leasing solutions and over twenty years of experience and support for advanced vehicles of all types. Marc Ellison with Intermotive discussed their idle reduction solutions that offer a powerful, near term return on investment, specializing in fleets up to class five but available up to class eight.
Our 10:30 am session was Planning for Success: Fleet Electrification Infrastructure. It was moderated by Barry Carr with Clean Communities of Central New York. Panelists included Paul Stith with Black and Veatch (BV), Kathleen Staples from Dominion Energy, and Chris Palmieri from EVBox. Developing EV charging facilities may be the biggest sticking point and risk factor for fleet electrification. All panelists emphasized the need for collaboration, especially as fleets plan for growth past the demonstration phase.
Paul gave an overview of BV’s leadership as an electrification technical resource, including their key role in developing Tesla’s supercharger network and Electrify America’s national deployments. He discussed the close tie between transportation electrification and renewable energy. From a project management standpoint, fleets need to plan every aspect out before starting, especially with heavier EVs. Don’t buy the vehicles until you know that your infrastructure will be ready.
Kathleen reviewed the customer journey for fleet EV infrastructure: business case, assessment, approval process, implementation, evaluation, and expansion. She discussed the importance of utility partnerships and stressed the importance of early planning. Kathleen leads Dominion’s internal team focused on electrification. Not all utilities have done this, but more are certain to follow their example.
Chris followed with a detailed, multi-step process for successful infrastructure development. First, fleets need to conduct detailed assessments of best fits for EVs and what’s available. Next, look at growth over time and duty cycles, daily use and other operational factors to be sure you’ll have adequate infrastructure. Then, make sure you have all internal and external partners at the table. Then, work with solution providers on implementation and installation. It’s also critical to make sure your EVSE provider uses chargers with open charge point protocol (OCCP) to ensure interoperability between hardware and software and to ensure hardware can be used with other software in the future.
The 1 pm session was Transportation System Safety & Efficiency Tools and Strategies. The moderator was Rich Granger from Drive Ohio, housed within the Ohio Department of Transportation. Panelists included Venu Garikapati with National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Carla Bailo from the Center for Automotive Research (CAR) in Ann Arbor, and Sue Bai at Honda of America. The panel discussed efforts to increase the safety and overall energy efficiency of transportation through the deployment of technologies and use of data. They also focused on tools for consumers to increase mobility energy efficiency.
Rich provided an overview of DriveOhio’s work on Smart Mobility to focus on safety, mobility, access, reliability and talent. They have developed collaborations with many partners, including Ohio’s Pennsylvania and Michigan, and with federal partners such as National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Carla emphasized that mobility is increasingly about the overall consumer experience, not just getting from “here to there.” She added that 25% of car buyers don’t bother with a test drive before purchasing their vehicles. Developments in technology are fast paced and exciting. Vehicles are increasingly capable of learning how operators drive and helping drivers optimize for efficiency and other benefits.
Sue focused on Honda’s R&D work using data to optimize vehicle and driver connection to other vehicles, to infrastructure, and to information – V2X. They have partnered with local governments, DriveOhio and many others to develop the smart US 33 corridor from Dublin to Marysville. With enabled vehicles, the system provides traffic flow management, enhanced safety, and efficiency. So far, data from the project shows an efficiency gain of 7.2%. This translates to environmental benefits and time savings.
Venu explained the new Mobility Energy Productivity Metric (MEP) developed by NREL. The metric is part of a larger tool that allows people to understand how mobility choices – personal car, transit, biking, walking – will vary based on time needed, cost, energy and thus, environmental impacts. One question now being explored is whether we can increase energy efficiency by connecting people better.
The session at 2:30 pm was Efficiency Solutions for Government, Vocational and Delivery Fleets. The session moderator was Carl Lisek from South Shore Clean Cities in Northern Indiana. Panelists included Chris Lyon from National Truck Equipment Association (NTEA), Mark Ellison from Intermotive, and Valery Kang with Viriciti. With the wide range of data-driven solutions available, all panelists emphasized the importance of the driver and understanding fleet drive and duty cycles.
Chris spoke on NTEA’s programs and activities with the work truck industry, including an ongoing focus on efficiency for vehicles in a wide range of fleet sectors. He also discussed the significant progress in recent years with industry efficiency solutions, especially those that are based on telematics and other data systems.
Mark emphasized that drivers need to be the focus, and that includes any anti-idling program. From that, it’s important to create anti-idling rules and manage adherence to them. Fleets have several choices – simple engine shutdown, automatic start and stop based on battery state of charge, and electrification with solar augmentation.
Valery discussed Viriciti’s electric and non-electric all-in-one fleet management solutions. These solutions increase fleet utilization, process complex data, reduce range anxiety, lower fuel cost, improve visibility, optimize operations and decrease total cost of ownership. They also offer solutions for EV charger management. They can provide a dashboard with custom in-depth reports.
While we hope these daily summaries provide a good overview, we recommend viewing the actual session recordings to gain the most value. All will be available 24-48 hours from live airing through the Whova app for all registered conference attendees.