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Why more superchargers alone can't prevent overcrowding

Discussion in 'Supercharging & Charging Infrastructure' started by Teo, Jun 24, 2014.

  1. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    I think you completely missed my point. That's okay. Let the conversation go the way it's going.
     
  2. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    The broadcast system would work for cars plugged in, but probably not for spots that are ICEd.

    Several smaller stations would be ideal. However, it's probably less expensive to build one large one.
     
  3. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    That can be addressed with magnetic sensors rather than depending only on the plug. It's definitely not perfect, but vastly better than nothing and also relatively easy to implement. A fully networked system as suggested before would be more tough to implement and more costly to run (as it requires two way communication and a reservation system).

    Yes, but I'm coming from the perspective of the OP (who says that there isn't enough space to build one large station at every location).
     
  4. Teo

    Teo Banned

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    stopcrazypp, I agree with the live data idea. Availability info in the car would be a solution. It wouldn't be perfect but it would eliminate 80% of problems. One problem with this is the same problem with digital sign idea. When the screen shows 1 available space, a few cars might head there at the same time and it will continue showing 1 available until the first car arrives there. The solution #2 in the opening message is the live data idea. With the help of other users, I changed my digital road signs idea to real-time on-screen availability. It is mentioned in the opening message under #2 as an update. I think Tesla has about 2 years to add availability. Then that will be used for a year or two until they switch to the smart navigation idea.

    I think Elon works with programmers from a gaming background. He mentioned that a few times. I think this smart navigation that calculates all the variables including speed, distance etc. is one of those exciting software projects some of those programmers might enjoy working on. Sometimes I think Elon likes a good challenge and creates these situations on purpose. I can see the problems. I can see the solutions but it is not easy. But then again Elon always comes out on top if there is something that can solved with software and engineering.

    bonnie, sorry if I misunderstood. I thought you were saying they will monitor usage and respond accordingly.
     
  5. JakeP

    JakeP S P4996 / X P6028

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    I think Bonnie was saying exactly what you have just concluded, which is that this is a problem that can be solved quantitatively using available and real time data inputs with good engineering and elegant software solutions, which is what Tesla has a solid track record of doing. Watch California, because this is where they will monitor and respond to this first.
     
  6. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    No, I was saying that as more cars are sold, they can watch how usage changes & will be better able to predict what the needs will be in the future with larger numbers of cars on the road, vying for the superchargers.

    There are a lot of variables that cannot be determined today. Will Gen III cars be used primarily as a commuter car (and put less of a load on superchargers)? Will certain areas of the country have less people taking road trips than other areas? Without real data, it's just a game. But Tesla has real data already coming in, data that can be used as input to determining solutions (and fine-tuned as new data is acquired). And what about when BMW and other car manufacturers join the mix? What will their customers' behavior be like regarding superchargers? Data is gold. And since the sales are just ramping up, data is being acquired and there is time to analyze it and respond to it and fine-tune those responses.

    You don't get the opportunity to extrapolate using actual data very often.
     
  7. palmer_md

    palmer_md Member

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    We don't go from 15 diners to 150 diners overnight. It is a gradual build, and they can build the network accordingly. Also if all the Teslas are on a network and you've plotted your destination into a navigation system, the network will know where you are going and approximately when you will be there. It can predict when you will need to stop for refueling and find the appropriate station and direct you to it, since it will know when another driver is charging and almost complete. That is the beauty of having all the charge stations and the cars on the same network.
     
  8. Teo

    Teo Banned

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    I agree completely. For some time now I have been watching Tesla videos instead Netflix. One of the videos I watched was about data. It is this video:
    Building Production Reporting Tools to Enable Massively-Parallel Improvement at Tesla - YouTube

    They have some smart people there. I wish they would also add sensors to supercharge stations that can tell if a space is ICED.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Yes this is the smart navigation idea I mentioned as solution #1 in the opening message. I hope they make basic cellular connection (without web) free for the life of the car so this system can work. I'm not sure how other cars could share superchargers if they don't have built in 3G. Recently there was a topic here about BMW and Tesla sharing superchargers and a few users said imagine it as sharing with Gen3 cars. They were suggesting the additional number of cars from BMW would be just like additional cars from Gen3. But of course if those BMW's don't communicate (if they all don't have a connection as standard) with the same central computer that assigns different cars to different stations, it will break the system.
     
  9. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    Tesla needs connectivity built into the car for their own needs. It is almost guaranteed to be built into every Tesla for remote diagnosis, software updates and for the mobile phone app to precool or preheat the car. That requires very little bandwidth and the fee can be built into the price of the car so it is 'free' to the customer much like BMW offers 'free' service for the first few years.
     
  10. roblab

    roblab Active Member

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    I have another demonstration scenario: Freeways vs cars.

    It doesn't seem to matter how many freeways there are, or will be, if you go through the city (any city) it will be crowded at times, and often will be stop and go, or worse, stop and stop. Like SCs, freeways get ICEd.

    Interestingly enough, there are times that you can count on when the freeways will be clear. I can drive through LA and hardly have another car within a quarter mile, if I go at the proper time. The other evening, I drove from Reno to Napa, with no traffic at all. But for some reason, the dis-incentive of perhaps being stuck in traffic, waiting hours at times, doesn't seem to make any difference.

    The same is true with SC stations. Everyone knows that the high volume time is Friday evening to Sunday morning. But week after week we hear of people having to *gasp* wait for a charge, sometimes for 30 minutes.

    There are people like me, I know, it is thankfully rare, that never have to wait for a charger. I have never been to Harris Ranch when there were more than 2 other cars charging there. Usually I am the only one. Once at Gilroy, there were 3 other cars!

    Also, I hear people insisting that they must drive above the speed limit, and therefore must use more superchargers, so the idea of waiting hasn't slowed anybody down. I can often skip a charger, and save time, even if I don't have to wait. This, even if I am doing over 2000 miles of driving on a trip.

    So, I conclude that it isn't a problem. People are going to crowd into SCs at peak times, never figuring out that, hey, it's a vacation, and they don't have to be there during rush charge hour. Others will also HAVE to charge at that same time, and they will all complain to Tesla that they have to wait. It's human nature. I don't know how Data, or Tesla data, will change that.

    Any ideas?
     
  11. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Well-Known Member

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    Also relevant to the discussion is that customers are gold.
     
  12. chickensevil

    chickensevil Active Member

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    Honestly I think a lot of this will not be as impacting as we make it seem. Not that there aren't great ideas he that shouldn't be considered.

    But you are all forgetting about speed increases. They have stated before that they can hit at least 150kW on the current technology. If they up the battery size they will also be able to up the speed without issue. I think their current limit is actually the other components not the batteries that is preventing them from going faster.

    Assuming that 2C is the max rate you can safely go with a battery of this type, then we can easily see them going up to 170kW on the current batteries. If they release a 110kW (what people are expecting to be the next logical step) then their next max would go to 220kW.

    If you then keep the distances between chargers roughly the same, it will take you half the time (maybe more) at 220kW to recover 130 miles. That easily drops you to 10 minutes. I think speed combined with more stalls will hit a happy medium.
     
  13. NoMoGas

    NoMoGas Supporting Member

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    If Superchargers became as ubiquitous as gas stations, and Elon's plan of "5 times the range in 1/5th the time to charge" becomes reality, this is moot.
     
  14. bonnie

    bonnie Oil is for sissies.

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    This.
     
  15. aronth5

    aronth5 Long Time Follower

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    Not to mention the impact of longer range will have on decreasing the need to supercharge. It is not unreasonable to expect that by 2019 the Model S/X will have another 100 miles of range which will reduce the daily supercharges needed. The real concern is once Gen3 reaches critical mass. However I agree with others who have pointed out that Tesla will have real world data to address the problem.
     
  16. Teo

    Teo Banned

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    #36 Teo, Jun 24, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2014
    Here is another analogy:

    Imagine an office worked sitting on a desk and processing documents. She can process 10 documents in 40 minutes, representing a station with 10 stalls. There is a steady stream of 10 customers per 40 minutes. Demand and capacity is an exact match. Customers put the documents on the desk and leave.

    Now let's double the demand from 10 customers to 20 per 40 minutes. We need to double the capacity too but unfortunately we can't make the office worker process more documents (replicating 10 stall limit). Instead we add another desks and office worker.

    When people arrive they have to leave their documents on one of the desks without knowing the workload. This replicates the fact that you don't know how crowded a station is before you arrive there. Because the randomness of choice sometimes one desk or the other will be overloaded.

    Now image demand would increase 10 times instead 2 and there would be 10 desks. The possibility that some of desks will be overloaded a few times their capacity is high.

    chickensevil,
    Bigger battery and faster charge would help but I think those will take time. The increase in number of Teslas is too big and too quick. Currently there are 27.553 Model S in the US. It will be 297.000 at the end of 2019 even with modest estimations in the opening message.
     
  17. Lloyd

    Lloyd Well-Known Member

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    Teo,

    Now factor in that they are increasing superchargers at a rate of about 1 stall per day. If that continues..... I don't see any shortage!

    Superchargers are not the only place to charge. There are other options. Tesla can charge almost anywhere. 95% of my charging is done at home and is not affected at all by supercharging.
     
  18. Modelxvin1365

    Modelxvin1365 Member

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    This issue has plagued my mind once production would be increased to 31,000 and on forward. What will be the saving grace in the availability of supercharger stalls (owners not waiting to charge) will be the number of sites that will be open on similar but diversified routes of travel, rather than having large amounts of stalls on one given route. Supercharger stations fall victim to what City utility companies have been dealing with for years being peek demand. For ex for 6 hours a day capacity is utilized at 100 percent, but at the 6 hour and 2 minute marker demand is reduced precipitously.This problem becomes further aggravated exponentially by the growth in the user base. It is unpractial for most sites even the most populous to have 20+ Stalls just to suffice a small peek load window. Supercharger locations will be placed on two or more "Channels" of travel in the same direction. To help visualize .Although this map depicts a local drive every route going from state to state will have a minimum of 2 choices to travel in the same direction. Due to the presence of the former local state Highways that used to carry the bulk of the road traffic until the federal interstate system was built to completion. In many cases the interstate operates a more direct route with higher speed limits leaving a faster travel time. How much faster depends on your driving habits some cases the difference is only 10 or 20 minutes. Currently Supercharger locations seem to be very privileged to federal highway System (which is understandable given the current constraints) ,considering supercharging is the only way to traverse state to state, diversification of routes will be necessary (supporting local highways/thoroughfares ).Supercharger placements dictate predictable routes of travel and without due consideration, statistics and proper planning will only create its own bottle necks. For perspective consider memorial day one of the most traveled days by automobiles. We have yet to see 8 mile long lines for gasoline as most of the nation takes to the roads because there are multiple gas stations to evenly disperse the load.
     
  19. Teo

    Teo Banned

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    #39 Teo, Jun 24, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2014
    Lloyd, I am factoring that. (edit: There are 4 possible solutions in the opening message but assuming none is implemented) No matter how much you increase number of stations it doesn't help even if the increase is more than the rate of cars. Please first read my office worker example in previous message just above yours. Then read on.

    Currently there are 27K cars and 98 stations in the US. When there are 270K cars there should be 980 stations. Lets assume for a moment it is 1470 stations (980*1.5=1470). I'm going for 50% more than the rate of cars.

    In my previous message with the office worker, this would mean 15 desks and 100 customers. However this still doesn't solve the problem that if you leave it to random choice, some of these 15 desks will have more than 10 documents, maybe 20, maybe 30 while others get none. Also it is not location based. Those desks that get 30 documents will be different desks all the time.

    Right now the only reason we haven't seen this problem so far is because we are at 1 desk level. We haven't passed the threshold where one desk is not enough. As time goes on and cars in the US reach 50K, 100K and so on the problem will be very obvious.
     
  20. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

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    These examples are nice and all but then what is your solution? If Tesla can't make things right with even 150,000 Superchargers in the US then what is the point? Should they just give up? There will always be limited resources and people will have to wait at times. That's part of life. I can't expect to hit rush hour traffic and still drive 65. I can't expect to hit a Supercharger on a Friday night out of town and expect zero wait. Tesla can use software, bigger batteries, lighter cars, telematics and more Superchargers and destinations to limit any pain but nothing is perfect.
     

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