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TED Data Visualizations: How We Drive & Charge EVs

published: 2011-03-02 14:37

ectric vehicles epitomizing the intersection of technology and design, it’s only fitting that they’re top of mind at the latest TED conference. Among the technologies on display at GE’s installation at TED (which stands for “Technology, Entertainment and Design”), is the ecomagination WattStation EV charger, which was designed by Yves Behar, and an array of data visualizations that showcase information on a range of energy and environmental topics. The ones below take a closer look at driving and charging habits — and how a new EV world can take them into account as it evolves.

As you can see in the first one, mapping EV driver behavior can help identify opportunities for increasing grid efficiency. For example, most EV charging — shown in green bars — is done when there are other demands on the grid. The blue area shows a rough average of when utilities have the greatest excess capacity. Smart charging can take advantage of the gap and charge an EV when demand is at its lowest.

The next graphic illustrates what most of us know to be true: that on average, the further you are away from a city center, the more you drive. But, that obvious fact is of great importance when decisions are made about which type of EV to buy, as those living close to city centers may not need the extended range offered by hybrids.

And this image points out that over 50 percent of all U.S. household trips are under six miles, which makes so-called “range anxiety” — which is the worry that your car will run out of its charge – less of a concern for a great number of drivers.


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