Petrol stations are in a period of great change. Even the name is outdated as so-called ‘alternative’ fuels continue their push to the fore. No one knows precisely how these future fuel hubs will look, or even what they will be called, but one thing is certain – innovations and solutions are required to pave the way to the future.
Bever Innovations, an innovator in the international forecourt lighting market, has seen an increase in demand for their LED Price Display products and other innovative technologies on multi-fuel and EV-only fuel sites. Their flexible CubiQ luminaires, designed to meet the requirements of the modern fuel station, were recently selected by Shell Recharge for their first dedicated EV charging hub in London. The sustainably designed charging hub also features an innovative InMo LED screen, specially developed for use in a price totem at a petrol station. The sign is used to show the number of available charging bays as well as in store deals to passing motorists.
It is however, Bever’s cloud-based Smart Technology that is proving the biggest hit amongst operators of multi-fuel sites. Smart Technology enables site operators to manage all their Smart connected devices and processes with one application. Almost all of Bever Innovations’ LED products are supplied with Smart Technology as standard. The secure wireless system allows the 24/7 exchange of information without the need for a connection to the internet. The network can be monitored and updated via an easy-to-use app.
Jean-Michel Ludot, Sales Director France at Bever Innovations has been working on several multi-fuel and EV projects where Smart Tech has played a significant role: He explained “The challenge with EV is you don’t have a traditional point of sale system where there are prices for various fuel types. Unlike fuel, the price of electricity doesn’t change every day. We have developed a system where the customer can connect to the Bever cloud from anywhere and update the prices, which are sent directly to the site. The prices can then entered directly into the totem with our LED Price Displays.”
The same system has also been used in the UK at York’s HyperHub. This project between Evo Energy, the UK’s leading renewable energy company and the City of York Council, set out to showcase best practice for the design of EV charging facilities in cities. The partnership has resulted in the opening of two HyperHub sites in the city and, as with the projects in France, the ability to make price changes across all sites remotely, is a key requirement.
Rutger van Dierendonck, Technical Director of Bever Innovations commented “Our Smart connected sites offer a very simple way for retail fuel forecourt operators to ready their sites for the future,”
A multi-fuel future
Whilst the popularity of electric vehicles is certainly on the rise, the modern fuel station is likely to have a multitude of different fuel types on one site. Site operators are increasingly looking for flexible solutions that can meet their changing needs.
“Multi-fuel sites require flexibility from the solutions available on the market. We have installed totems where we have a blank line prepared for when they install hydrogen onsite. A lot of the things we do are for multi-energy sites. So, we have electricity, possibly hydrogen and two types of natural gas – standard and bio natural gas. Four different products on site and all of them are managed easily and remotely via the same system,” said Jean-Michel.
“We are even being asked by customers to display the tonnes of CO2 saved compared with traditional fuels. This is a great way to highlight the benefits of non-conventional fuels and something that we can easily manage through our system, he added.
If you have any questions regarding our LED solutions for your EV-station, please contact us.