Auburn University, ABM Partner for EV Charging Station Solutions

Auburn University’s School of Industrial & Graphic Design recently partnered with ABM Industries for a series of student senior projects involving the design of new and innovating EV charging stations, according to a news release. Six graduating students received awards of up to $3,000 each for their design concepts, which ABM will adopt among their other forward-thinking ideas for the future of EV infrastructure.

ABM launched a series of branded charging solutions earlier this year. It sought out a partnership with Auburn to develop new solutions that could enhance and improve current charger design, incorporating factors like accessibility, ease of use, and ergonomics.

“Auburn was a natural choice for this project given their leadership in industrial design, and they were a great partner throughout, with each student providing exciting new ideas and perspectives,” said ABM Product Manager Alex Drouillard. “We went in with the plan to offer only five prizes, but the outcomes were so strong we needed to add in an additional prize to recognize these efforts and for us to consider them all for our future charger designs.”

The 13 participating students received a design briefing from ABM and rented electric vehicles to gain firsthand experience with existing charging stations in the area. The students worked with the ABM team and their professor to flesh out their designs. Each design was judged by a panel of experts according to factors like aesthetics, cost, and accessibility.

“ABM was a great partner to work with, both in bringing a real-world application to our students, but also in providing a tangible design brief that gave them a lot to work with and, ultimately, resulted in a range of different outcomes from the students,” said Jerrod Windham, Associate Professor of Industrial Design at Auburn University. “The cash prize offering was also unique, allowing for our students the opportunity to be rewarded monetarily for their work and understand the value of their designs.”

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Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning. He can be reached at [email protected].