Friday, February 24, 2012
MechE Alumni Produce Electric Vehicle Charger for FordThree Mechanical Engineering alumni are at the head of an at-home charger for the Ford Focus Electric, due to hit the streets in late 2012. Michael Mattei (ME'87) and Manoj Karwa (ME'89) at Leviton and Stephanie Janczak (ME'88) of Ford Motor Company worked together to bring the project from the design stage to stores like Best Buy, where it is available to customers waiting for their new wheels.
Starting three years ago, Mike Mattei and his team at Leviton began planning on their entrance to the electric vehicle market. He brought in Manoj Karwa from the auto industry as the Program Manager. As luck would have it, fellow alumna Stephanie Janczak was on the team behind a bid request from Ford for just the sort of EV charger that Mattei and Karwa were designing. After Ford selected Leviton's proposal, the team met weekly to bring the charger to market.
The chargers, built by electrical device maker Leviton and compatible with all upcoming Ford plug-in vehicles, will recharge the batteries of the Focus Electric in slightly more than three hours. The device can be easily installed, replaced or upgraded without the use of tools due to its innovative design and mounting bracket. The unit's exterior housing is made out of up 60 percent post-consumer recycled material and is made in the United States.
"We are pleased to partner with Ford, a world class innovator, as we embark on the electric vehicle revolution. Leviton has a long history of providing commercial and residential electrical power delivery solutions which are easy to use and backed by industry leading service and support. Our Evr-Green electric vehicle charging products continue that tradition and add another solution to our growing portfolio of green products and services. These innovative solutions will help promote the adoption and expansion of electric vehicles," said Mike Mattei, Vice President and General Manager for Leviton's Commercial and Industrial business unit.