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ANNOUNCING THE WINNER OF THE STUDENT’S DESIGN COMPETITION FOR THE BEST ELECTRIC VEHICLE CHARGING STATION
In November 2021, AgeVolt in co-operation with the Faculty of Architecture and Design of STU, announced a competition for the students of Design. The main aim of this competition was for students to design charging station concepts for electric vehicles that would not only be ecological and financially sustainable but would also respect the urban concept.
AgeVolt’s intention with this competition was to bring an innovative solution on the market with a core focus on sustainability and to to respect the stable energy network. We also wanted to give young design students an opportunityto showcase their creativity and innovation, and to participate in the e-mobility transition.
Electromobility is a topical subject not only in the context of the transport decarbonisation, but also in connection with electrification and Smart Cityinnovations. Europe could dominate in this area mainly thanks to the financial strength of European carmakers and their ability to turn R&D into strategic innovation. Electrification, also presents an opportunity for the energy sector to transition from legacy to smart grid based renewables energy mix.
The assignment for students was to develop a new design of a charging station, which will be part of the urban landscape. At the same time, the design should respect use of sustainable materials for mass adoption within the cities and municipalities, parking places of shopping centers and residential buildings and homes. Use of ecological or recycled materials was also a particular focus.
Seven students from the Faculty of Architecture and Design took part in the competition. The submissions were evaluated by a jury comprising of:
Peter Morgenstein, Vice-Dean of FAD STU
Martin Baláž, Head of the studio of FAD STU
Tomáš Žáček, architect, fouder of Ecocapsule
Jozef Ťapajna, Head of Product Development, Agevolt Slovakia s.r.o.
Silvia Ferencová, Marketing Specialist
The winning design was made by a student, Daniela Alföldiová. Daniela’s design was successful mainly thanks to the use of commonly found urban materials such as paving and stone, which respected the urban landscape.
As Jozef Ťapajna, from AgeVolt commented: “The design is original and creates a fantastic visual appeal. The inspiration of the tiles and stone in the patterns also brings the possibility of adapting the charging stations to the identity of the urban places where they are located. At the same time, we appreciate the elaboration of the design, as well as the use of recyclable materials.”
Equally ambitious design by a student, Patrik Rózsa came a close second.
“Personally, I consider this proposal to be one of the best prepared, which also captured the idea of reducing smog in an urban congested environment and often the unsightly location of charging stations. Although it is not a significant problem today, there is a possibility that with the development of electromobility the solutions such as Patrik’s will be a necessity” said Jozef Ťapajna.
However, the design, which for some may seems like a science fiction, provides the perfect solution for historic centers. “The undeniable advantage of this proposal is also the fact that a large part of the technology is located under the road and the owners of the electric cars can easily plug their charging station into a pre-prepared connector right where they park. When leaving, the charging station is simply unplugged and put back in a car trunk. Thus, when the EV is not charging, the charging station is not present either,” adds Ťapajna.
Two designs by Rastislav Myglys and Jakub Maglay came in the third place.
Rastislav prepared several versions of the charging stations such as a wall box, pillar but also a charging station located in the bollards, which are well- sigthed in parks or historic centers where they often serve as a barrier between the area reserved for pedestrians and the areas for cars. “The beauty of such a solution is the fact that it is practically invisible to pedestrians, and they go unnoticed, when the EV is not charging,” explains Ťapajna.
“Jakub’s design appealed to us with its structural simplicity and easy installation. In other words, no component in the charger is used once. This brings a high degree of production efficiency, reduces the complexity of production, logistics and services,” states Ťapajna. The oval design without aggressive edges optically reduces the charging station and creates space for creative use of almost the entire area of the charging station.
As part of an environmentally responsible approach, AgeVolt brings new innovations in the field of electric vehicle charging, also with regard to aesthetic design and respect for the spaces in which the charging stations will be located. Due to the expanding charging infrastructure, it is necessary to think about how the charging stations can affect the visual character of the public space.
The project of the Slovak charging system AgeVolt entered the market at the beginning of 2020. The company based in Bratislava holds a certificate Seal of Excellence, which was awarded by the European Commission to the most promising European innovative projects. As a result, it will receive EUR 1.8 million from the grant of the Ministry of Economy of the Slovak Republic for further development.
Since 2020, AgeVolt has took part in one of the TOP 10 global competitions for innovative startups. This year, it was added to the prestigious # SET100 global list as one of the 100 most innovative startups in the energy and mobile sectors. AgeVolt cooperates with the National Battery Center and the Slovak Academy of Sciences on the development of new technologies and develops innovations in cooperation with DXC Technology, ABB or Engie Slovakia. Dozens of AgeVolt chargers are currently in operation in Slovakia and the Czech Republic, and hundreds more are planned for the near future.
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