AT&T and Schneider partner on EV Charging Stations

February 22, 2016 by Jeff Shepard

AT&T and Schneider Electric have developed a proof of concept solution that has the potential to solve the industry-wide challenge of enabling facility managers and drivers to access data from electric vehicle charging (EVC) systems. This enables intelligent load distribution and effective energy access management. The proof of concept uses AT&T Internet of Things (IoT) solutions to wirelessly connect Schneider Electric's EVlink™ charging stations to an open, flexible cloud platform that can integrate with any back-end system. This IoT-enabled solution aims to deliver a seamless experience for both station operators and drivers. Trials of the technology will be held in several U.S. cities.

The proof of concept for this solution was developed and tested at the AT&T Foundry for IoT Innovation, and uses: AT&T Flow Designer and AT&T M2X: These aggregate data from the EVC controllers and present it on a screen. This includes real-time charging status; start time; temperature; humidity; and cable position (in-holster vs. out for anti-theft). The stations can see how long a car is parked relative to its charging level. If a user parks a car for too long, the charging station sends alerts. Facility managers can also turn the Schneider Electric EVlink on and off remotely over the AT&T network.

AT&T Global SIM and AT&T Control Center: AT&T Global SIMs automatically connect to the AT&T network from virtually anywhere in the world, transmitting data from the EVC controllers to back-end systems and a mobile app. With AT&T Control Center, facility managers can launch, manage and quickly scale connected device deployments.

And Mobile Apps: Schneider Electric's EVlink will integrate with a mobile app, so drivers can manage their accounts and authenticate their cars to the EVC station. Drivers can identify the closest charging stations, know which spots are open and get a notification when charging is complete.

"Around 50 percent of today's electric vehicle charging stations in workplaces aren't connected. As a result, facility managers have limited capabilities to manage and operate their charging stations," said Pierre Sacré, director of Electric Vehicle Solutions, Schneider Electric North America. "Through this proof of concept, we see a great opportunity to run a pilot and fine tune the model to solve an industry challenge as well as better serve electric vehicle drivers, utilities and facility managers. By working in collaboration with the AT&T Foundry, we look forward to bringing this concept to life."

"Putting IoT technology in Schneider Electric's EVlink charging stations is a great example of how the AT&T Foundry can quickly collaborate with a customer on a proof of concept to bring connectivity and intelligence to machines," said Igal Elbaz, vice president ecosystem & innovation, AT&T. "We're using innovative technology to improve the growing clean energy market."

The enhanced EVlink stations will initially be trialed at Schneider Electric's corporate offices in Dallas, Raleigh, NC, Nashville and Costa Mesa, CA.