DETROIT — April 24, 2012 — GE Energy’s (NYSE: GE) Industrial Solutions business unveiled its new ecomagination™-approved WattStation™ and WattStation™ Connect today at the SAE 2012 World Congress in Detroit, Mich. A complete, user-friendly electric vehicle (EV) charging station and software platform, the solution allows WattStation owners to manage charging stations remotely, giving them the ability to manage and set customer pricing for EV charging, provide access control at their facilities, generate valuable reports and engage with customers in new ways. Now available, GE’s sleek, stylish and modern designed WattStation pedestal EV charger is easy to use, customizable and features a retractable cord.
GE Energy is at work connecting people and ideas to create advanced technologies like the WattStation and WattStation Connect. EV users can now gather information and process payments in an easy-to-use, customizable, reliable and secure system.
The WattStation Connect full-service software platform helps meet a wide variety of EV needs, whether it is a retailer looking to attract new customers, a commercial property manager in need of information on electricity usage or a fleet owner in search of better cost-allocation data. WattStation Connect provides owners a user-friendly method to manage, monitor and maintain their EV charging ecosystem network.
"We worked closely with Hertz in the development of the WattStation Connect software because Hertz is at the forefront of electric vehicle deployment," said Michael Mahan, product general manager, EV infrastructure for GE Energy's Industrial Solutions business. “Their global EV solutions in the U.S., Europe and China require the advanced, networked stations that we offer.”
Industrial Solutions is forming data acquisition agreements with key navigation companies to share information on the installations and availability of WattStations throughout the U.S. and Canada. This enables EV drivers to view and locate GE’s WattStations, obtain directions to the EV charging stations, access pricing details and determine whether a unit is available for charging. In addition to global positioning systems (GPS), the GE WattStation Connect data will be available through the Internet, mobile app/device and future in-vehicle (built-in navigation) systems.
GE Energy’s Industrial Solutions business is working with a well-known online payment company to enable drivers to safely and conveniently pay for charging fees through the WattStation Connect mobile app. The app will be available for download in the coming weeks. EV drivers can use the mobile app to scan the quick response (QR) barcode on the WattStation charger. The QR code will identify the station and the pricing structure for that individual charger.
GE Energy’s WattStation and WattStation Connect are designed to work within the EV ecosystem, smart electronic commerce and monitoring systems, making it energy efficient and providing customers with a no-hassle experience. The award-winning WattStation can be installed into any commercial, public or retail location. EV users will be able to use this product at retail outlets, hotels, office buildings, institutions such as hospitals, public and private parking decks and street parking. Here are some of the benefits:
- Combining functionality with a modern design by renowned industrial designer Yves Behar, the GE WattStation pedestal uses smart grid technology and enables utility companies to manage the impact of electric vehicles on the local and regional power grids. Its sleek interface with LED indicator lights helps to identify when it’s available for use, charging an EV or if a fault has occurred.
- The WattStation’s intelligent self-cleaning cord management system allows for use in a multitude of environments without compromising the life of the product. The cord is self contained within the charger to keep the cord organized and out of the way when the charger is not in use. The cord only retracts when the charger is disconnected from a vehicle, preventing damage when the charger is in use.
- The upgradeable WattStation is designed to grow with its users’ needs. Its modular design simplifies in-field upgrades and ensures that EV charging facilities can expand without the need for costly replacement equipment.
- Three modes of communication (cellular 3G, Wi-Fi or Ethernet connections) provide WattStation owners with flexibility for communicating back to the WattStation Connect network. The WattStation Connect software offers the flexibility of different packages (fleet, corporate and commercial) and customizable payment options.
- GE’s WattStation Connect mobile app enables EV owners to locate stations, see station availability, pay for charging their vehicle and check the status of the charge while their vehicle is charging. The mobile app will be available at the Apple iTunes Store® and Android™ Market. Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology provides secure access to the charging station.
- Through the GE EV Certified Installer program, users can tap into GE’s network of service providers for the assistance they need to make their EV charging projects a reality.
- Placing safety first, with ground fault protection and NEMA 3R indoor/outdoor rating, GE’s WattStation meets all UL and fire safety standards.
“GE has a full range of electrical distribution products required to support EV deployment and to move power from the grid to the road, helping our customers operate in a smarter, more networked world,” added Mahan. “Our EV charging solutions offer a variety of options that make sense for you and your community. Whether you need durability, modern style, freestanding units, software-enabled or simple charging functionality, GE has designed leading technology for the delivery, management, conversion and optimization of electrical power and can connect you to the most effective, convenient solution for you.”
To earn ecomagination approval, a product is evaluated for its ability to significantly and measurably improve the customer's environmental and operating performance. Green Order, a consulting firm, helps verify the rigorous, multi-tiered qualification process to ensure accuracy and thorough documentation of technological performance.
For more information on GE Energy’s EV solutions, please visit its website, check it out on Facebook or follow on Twitter @GEindustrial.
Apple iTunes Store is a trademark of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries.
Android is a trademark of Google Inc.
ecomagination is GE’s business strategy to help customers meet their environmental and operational challenges. It is based on GE’s belief that solving environmental problems is good business around the world. It represents a pledge by the company to continually improve operations and invest in research and development that will produce more innovative ecomagination products. Through ecomagination, GE is driving a global energy transformation with a focus on innovation and R&D investment to accelerate the development and deployment of clean energy technology.
GE (NYSE: GE) works on things that matter. The best people and the best technologies taking on the toughest challenges. Finding solutions in energy, health and home, transportation and finance. Building, powering, moving and curing the world. Not just imagining. Doing. GE works. For more information, visit the company's website at www.ge.com.
GE Energy works connecting people and ideas everywhere to create advanced technologies for powering a cleaner, more productive world. With more than 100,000 employees in over 100 countries, our diverse portfolio of product and service solutions and deep industry expertise help our customers solve their challenges locally. We serve the energy sector with technologies in such areas as natural gas, oil, coal and nuclear energy; wind, solar, biogas and water processing; energy management; and grid modernization. We also offer integrated solutions to serve energy- and water-intensive industries such as mining, metals, marine, petrochemical, food & beverage and unconventional fuels.
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Hertz is the world's largest general use car rental brand, operating from approximately 8,100 locations in 146 countries worldwide. Hertz is a leading airport car rental brand in the United States and at 78 major airports in Europe, operating both corporate and licensee locations in cities and airports in North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. In addition, the company has licensee locations in cities and airports in Africa and the Middle East. Product and service initiatives such as Hertz #1 Club Gold®, NeverLost® customized, onboard navigation systems, SIRIUS XM Satellite Radio and unique cars and SUVs offered through the company's Prestige, Fun and Green Collections, set Hertz apart from the competition.
 GE’s WattStation was named PCWorld’s “2011 Best of Innovations Honorre,” Electrical Contractor magazine’s “NECA Showstopper 2010” and was named one of The Huffington Post’s “CES 2011: 14 Awesome Products from the Future.”