Research Highlight

Transportation—Better charging access

map of California EV stations

Officials responsible for anticipating the demand for electric vehicle charging stations could get help through a sophisticated new method developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. The method considers electric vehicle volume and the random timing of vehicles arriving at charging stations to determine an optimal number of chargers needed in the near and long term. “Our method can provide insights for planners to strategically balance the cost of new infrastructure with establishing a level of service that can enable and sustain increased use of electric vehicles,” said ORNL’s Zhenhong Lin. The study, published in Transportation Research Part E, mapped the number of direct current fast chargers needed at new stations between California cities if regional infrastructure were added in stages through 2029. The method can also be applied to other states, regions and the nation.