Enhanced Analytics Pilot Program

FALL 2021

Welcome and thanks for your interest in volunteering for the next level of Recurrent battery diagnostics! 

Recurrent is using a National Science Foundation grant to enhance and validate our machine learning models for range degradation. With this new funding, we are sending volunteers a plug-in diagnostic device to collect data for 12 weeks including efficiency, AC/DC charging diagnostics, and other information to estimate usable battery capacity and real-world range in a variety of conditions.

We're here to help support you step by step through this program, so reach out to us at support@recurrentauto.com with any questions that this page doesn’t cover.

Cohort 1 of the Tesla Model 3 has fully been filled. Fill out the "get my device" form to be added to the waitlist for Cohort 2

Get my device

Program Summary

  • Upon finalizing your participation (click "Get My Device" above), we’ll mail you a Geotab GO9 that plugs into your vehicle. Please install within 10 days of receiving the device. Installation videos to help you install and secure the device can be found below, as well as in the shipping box. If you are a Tesla participant, please ensure you have the latest firmware update to make sure we read the highest quality data. The device may periodically beep for two days after installation while it calibrates. Within 2 business days of installation, we will notify you if your device is working properly.
  • We'll need to collect data for up to 12 weeks. If you are receiving monthly reports for your vehicle, during this time we may request data from your vehicle telematically more often in order to compare the quality of data from the device with that received from our traditional data requesting method. We hope to learn if a moderately higher frequency of data requests can expand the insights that we can provide to all drivers. Please note that the Geotab device doesn't wake up your vehicle. See our owners page for more on our traditional data request methods.
  • When finished, you'll return the device inside the box or envelope that arrived with your device. Within that box or envelope should be a prepaid return label that you can ship from a local post office.
  • In exchange for completing the program, you'll have access to your data upon request and will be provided with an enhanced report about two months after finishing the program with insights similar to the Sample Report below.
  • As always, we do not share your individual data with anyone. We aggregate and anonymize data before using it to improve our models, and thus our ability to serve EV owners and shoppers.

View Sample Report

Installation Instructions

Tesla Model 3

Nissan Leaf

FAQ

What we're working on and why.

Recurrent has been awarded a National Science Foundation Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant worth $256k to investigate and validate our battery and range models using hands-on diagnostics. Full grant details here. There are some data points that we are currently unable to get from our automatic data collection, including efficiency, AC/DC charging patterns, and other information to estimate usable battery capacity. This program will allow us to collect this information for select drivers and use it to make our predictions and models better for all drivers.‍

What is involved?

  • Thanks for being a part of our first 100 enhanced analytics drivers!
  • This pilot study is at no cost to you. We will send you everything you need, including instructions and a return shipping envelope.
  • The device used in this program is the Geotab G09 OBDII plug in diagnostic device.
  • The device gets plugged into your OBDII port or appropriate adapter (Tesla), allowing us to perform advanced analytics through a combination of onboard hardware and higher frequency software-based range queries. We will provide any hardware you need to use it. ‍Don't worry, we have installation videos to help! Please install within 10 days of receiving the device.
  • We will send you a follow up email if the device isn't installed correctly or hasn't been installed within 10 days.
  • As a part of signing up, we are asking that you keep the device in your vehicle for up to 12 weeks. After some testing, we have found that this is just about the right window of time to provide useful insights.
  • During these 12 weeks, we may also request data from your vehicle more often if you are a connected driver in the Recurrent fleet. We intend to compare the quality of data from the device with that received from our traditional data requesting method. We hope to learn if a moderately higher frequency of data requesting can expand the insights that we can provide to all drivers across all makes and models.

What is in it for you? How will my one time enhanced report be different than my regular Recurrent report?

This program is an excellent opportunity for data enthusiasts and battery nerds. Participants in this program will get a one-time enhanced report with insights into your vehicle and comparisons to aggregated information from other similar vehicles, as well as access to your raw telematics data.

Standard Recurrent monthly reports provide you with stats vs the fleet, estimates of how your dashboard range should change with temperature and age, your state of charge observations over time, how your dashboard range degradation compares with similar vehicles, along with market insights.

With this enhanced report pilot program, we hope to provide the following additional insights beyond the regular Recurrent report:

  • How efficient (miles/kWh) your vehicle is during the program study period.
  • A summary of charging behaviors and stats specified by type of charger.
  • Insights into useable battery capacity for further understanding of battery state of health.
  • A comparison of your dashboard range estimate at full charge and the actual achievable range of your vehicle, along with how they vary with time and temperature.
  • Aggregated and anonymized distributions of real achievable ranges throughout the study from all participants.
  • Your detailed telematics data, down to the minute in resolution (upon request).

You will also have opportunities to give us suggestions for insights to dig into and include in future reports. See something in your data that you want us to look more into? Let us know!

How will you help science and accelerate EV adoption?

NSF SBIR grant recipients are chosen by a review panel based on the intellectual merit of the idea and also on the broader impacts of the research. We will use the data we collect to give EV drivers and shoppers a more accurate assessment of their vehicle, increasing confidence and transparency in electric vehicles and the used EV market. This work is intended to support the widespread adoption of EVs

Regarding our scientific mission, we want to understand the relationships between reported range estimates, usable battery capacity, and real-world range under a variety of conditions. This program gets us one step closer to an answer.‍

What is Geotab?

Geotab is a technology company that regularly serves commercial fleets with web-based analytics and diagnostics. They have provided devices to over 2 million fleet vehicles, including similar research projects with electric utilities like Duke Energy, Portland General Electric, and New York Con Edison. Learn more at geotab.com/about.‍

Does this void my warranty?

No! Plugging an OBDII device into a vehicle’s OBDII port or CAN bus (Tesla) does not void any warranties. For example, these same ports are used by mechanics during diagnostic services.

What if I change my mind or want to stop early?

If you cannot complete the study period for any reason, we'll understand. Just let us know and send the device back in the box or envelope in which it came with the return label it came with attached. Take it to a Post Office to be sent back.

Can I remove the device?

If you must, please only remove the device briefly. The longer the device is in, the more likely we will collect the sufficient amount of data for meaningful analysis. If an autoshop needs to access the port, you can remove it and keep it safe. If you need to briefly remove the device to scan your vehicle with your own device, such as Leaf Spy, that shouldn't be a problem either. Please note that when you re-install the device, it will reinitiate its installation process and make a few beeps like it did the first time you plugged in the device.

How will/did you choose participants?

We chose our first participating groups based on early volunteers. We are first starting with Tesla Model 3s and Nissan Leafs.

What happens if I break the device or fail to return it?

If you sign up, our terms and conditions document requires the return of the device without any damage. However, we expect that all drivers will in good faith do their best to take care of the device and we expect losses or damage to the devices to be rare. The program will be at no cost to you.

What if I need live support while installing?

Email support@recurrentauto.com to address this concern.

What data exactly is being collected?

  1. The date and time the GO9 device is plugged into and unplugged from the Study Vehicle;
  2. The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN), make, model and year of the Study Vehicle;
  3. Drive start date and time, duration of trip, trip distance, GPS coordinates (only Geotab will have access to GPS data) during trip, vehicle elevation, EV state of charge at start of drive, EV state of charge at end of drive, electricity consumed during drive, acceleration, speed, and ambient outside air temperature; and
  4. Energy in (from charging, regenerative braking, etc.) (kWh); energy out (kWh); high voltage battery voltage; for each charging session, the charge type, start date and time, duration, charging power level, charging peak power level (kW), charging voltage, and GPS coordinates of where the vehicle is located and where charging occurs (only Geotab will have access to this GPS coordinates).

Will GPS data be collected?

Similar to how we don't collected GPS data via our telematic software data requests, Recurrent will not have any access to GPS coordinates from these Geotab devices. Geotab will have access to all Device Data, including GPS coordinates and VIN. Geotab will not receive any personal identifying information about the driver or participants. This is not something we can disable and is collected by Geotab in case an accident occurs with a vehicle that contains one of their devices. We understand if this makes you uncomfortable and you choose not to participate.

Please note that the device has three LEDs, one of which will indicate that GPS data is on.

How will the moderately higher frequency of data requests affect my vehicle? (aka Vampire Drain)

For a standard monthly Recurrent report, we request data from all vehicles in the Recurrent fleet between 1 and 3 times a day. During this enhanced analytics program, we may telematically request data from your vehicle at higher frequencies, up to 144 times per day, averaging once every 10 minutes. Please note that if you don't receive a monthly Recurrent report, such as 2011-2015 Nissan Leafs, your vehicle won't have any telematic data requests.

In comparison, the Geotab GO9 device will offer a rich and detailed picture about your battery and collects data on a resolution of about once a minute while your vehicle is in ignition or charging. The Geotab device does not wake your car to telematically request data. It stores data on its own memory until cellular service is available.

We hope to learn whether or not we want to offer sometime in the future an opt-in feature for Recurrent drivers to have higher frequency telematic data requests for enhanced insights. Based on our study with vampire drain in a test Model S, you may expect a loss of 3 to 4 miles of extra range a day compared to no data requests at all if we data request your vehicle at a rate of once every 10 minutes.

Will the data be published or used by other researchers?

The data will likely be published in aggregate and anonymously on our website in the form of insights, graphs, and figures. We won't publish any plots or statistics that could be used to connect driving behavior with individual drivers.

How long do I need to participate?

As a part of signing up, we are asking that you keep the device in your vehicle for up to 12 weeks. We have found that this window of time is ideal for collecting the right amount of data to provide useful insights. If the right amount of data is collected early (for instance if you drive substantially more than average), we will let you know and you can send the device back early.

How is the device sending signals?

The GO9 devices use cellular services for connectivity. In this case, the GO9 uses Verizon. You don't need to have Verizon for the device to work.

Why is my device beeping?

Immediately after installation, the GO9 device will occasionally beep over the course of two days. This indicates that the device is calibrating and establishing a connection with the cellular network. Afterwards, the device should remain quiet, with an occasional beep. Unplugging the device and replugging it in will restart the calibration process. Please reach out to our support@recurrentauto.com if beeping becomes excessive.

Are there similar programs to this?

Yes! Utilities such as New York Con Edison, Duke Energy, and Portland General Electric, along with businesses such as Progressive Insurance.

Does this cost me anything?

Not at all!

Will the device drain my High Voltage or 12V battery? (aka Vampire Drain)

It shouldn't! It uses just a few mAh of energy each day. A fully charged 12V battery could power the device for a couple of years. The device enters a sleep mode when ignition is off. During the first three days of no ignition, it will communicate with the Geotab servers once every 30 minutes while in sleep mode, and afterwards, once every 23 hours. However, if you think you are encountering anything strange, please don't hesitate to reach out to support@recurrentauto.com.

Will you be selling my data? How are you using my data? What about my privacy?

Recurrent won't sell your data. The data collected for this program and for battery reports is about your vehicle, not about you. As a refresher for our regular battery reports, we ask for your home zip code to determine temperatures your vehicle is exposed to -- that's important information for battery range and health analysis. But we do not track where you're driving, just the battery's state and overall mileage. As part of our data science work, your vehicle's data will only be used anonymized and in aggregate to train a machine learning model used to score EVs that are listed for sale. Your vehicle's data will never be used or disseminated individually without your permission. For a refresher on our traditional Recurrent driver information, see our owners page.

What happens if I damage my car while installing it?

Recurrent provides installation videos in order to ensure a smooth and easy installation. If you encounter steps during installation of the GO9 device that you worry might damage your car please stop and contact us at support@recurrentauto.com. As stated in the terms and conditions, Recurrent is not liable for any damage caused by a study device.

Can participants be removed from the study?

If participants break the terms and conditions, which are reviewable by clicking "Get My Device" at the top or bottom of this page, we may remove you from the study and request the prompt return of the device.

Do I have to know statistics in order to understand the data?

Absolutely not. While it will be helpful, our team strives for excellence regarding the appropriate quality and quantity of science communication. If you have questions about any of the data, we are happy to explain it.

Can I sign up multiple cars?

Yes, if your vehicle make and model is currently invited to participate. Please complete the final enrollment once for each vehicle you would like to enroll.

If I have a Tesla, should I have the latest firmware update?

It is recommended that you have the latest firmware update in order to minimize the likelihood that the device fails to read critical pieces of information from your vehicle.

What makes and models are being currently invited to participate?

  • Tesla Model 3 (cohort 1 of the Tesla Model 3 has fully been filled. Fill out the "get my device" form to be added to the waitlist for cohort 2).
  • Nissan Leaf

When will I get my enhanced report?

We intend to deliver an enhanced report to your email inbox within two months of receiving the device back after you successfully complete the program. Raw data is available upon request.

Any other questions, email us support@recurrentauto.com

Get my device