Colorado State University to receive four really smart cars this summer

Note to Reporters: EMBARGOED UNTIL 10 A.M. JUNE 23, 2014 Talk to researchers from Colorado State and the other three schools involved in the Innova project on Monday, June 23, 10 a.m. MOUNTAIN time at 734-615-7474, access code 0195763#. A background video is here: and a project Info sheet is here: A photo of the Innova Dash is available with this release at

Colorado State University is one of four universities nationwide that will receive four all-electric micro vehicles that will help drive sustainable transportation research projects on campus – through the Internet.

CSU, University of Pittsburgh, University of Washington and the University Wisconsin were selected to receive the University Electric Vehicles – the Innova Dash – from Internet2 and Innova UEV LLC, the vehicle’s manufacturer, in August.

The zippy little cars will be used in two ongoing research projects at CSU: A grant from the Electric Power Research Institute to analyze data collected from plug-in electric vehicles, including how people are charging them, how far they venture from campus, how much traffic, parking, etc., is displaced by these vehicles; and educational outreach to local K-12 students funded by Bohemian Foundation.

“Colorado State has an outstanding history of research and engagement in not only the field of electrified transportation but also in improving the sustainability of the University community,” said Patrick Burns, vice president for IT at Colorado State. “All eight of our colleges and more than 75 percent of CSU faculty are engaged in sustainability-related research, and this year, the University achieved the highest score ever reported to STARS – the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Reporting System – that includes universities across the country. This project fits nicely with our goal of creating a more sustainable campus by quantifying the benefits of electric vehicle use.”

CSU has already installed charging stations for six electric vehicles on campus, with plans to expand that capacity to 10 by August. The University is also an active participant in Drive Electric Northern Colorado, which is committed to greater deployment of electric cars throughout the region, and a platinum member of the City of Fort Collins’ ClimateWise program.

“With the Innova vehicles in the University motor pool, campus employees will have the opportunity to choose a unique and innovative vehicle option when they need to make off-campus trips,” said Scott Baily, director of Academic Computing & Networking Services, who is a principal investigator on the Innova project. “We are really excited about this opportunity to exploit CSU’s exceptional commitment to sustainability, research, and technology. We can capitalize on established research techniques to monitor, store and analyze vehicle performance data; accelerate our goal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050; and explore the nuances of integrating electric vehicles into the daily lives of faculty, staff and students.”

The UEVs will be equipped with a tablet-sized personal computer controlling the electronics and advanced technologies. The UEVs will connect automatically to the CSU computer network through the on-campus Wi-Fi network to communicate operational data, such as position, speed and battery charge.

A mobile application will let UEV users know if a vehicle is available, where it is and where it will be, just by entering their campus identification and password provided by Internet2’s InCommon service. They can log in, reserve, activate vehicle use and provide comments on the vehicle’s performance and utility, allowing researchers to collect, transfer, store and analyze robust sensor data from the vehicle.

“We are excited about these four campuses that are regional leaders in sustainability using these electric vehicles to enhance research, adopt advanced technologies, and enhance campus carbon footprint reductions,” said Steve Wolff, Internet2 interim chief technology officer. “As more devices are connected to each other via the Internet and provide data that helps us make thoughtful decisions, it’s key that the Internet2 research and education community is at the cutting-edge of the technology and opportunities. We look forward to learning the results from these ‘Internet of Things’ research projects and hearing, what’s next.”

The “Internet of Things” allows “smart” objects to sense and communicate about their environment through embedded technology. At the conclusion of the projects, all aggregated data will become anonymous and publicly available for any researcher. 

“It’s very special for our organization to work with these four major research campuses and Internet2’s research and education community to discover new applications to address sustainability, while leveraging the Internet2 Network and services to advance research,” said Roman Kuropas, Innova chief executive officer and UEV founder. “We look forward to supporting Colorado State, Pitt, Washington and Wisconsin and their ‘Internet of Things’ sustainability research that will impact their campus and potentially campuses nationwide.”

The UEV debuted in April during the Internet2 Global Summit in Denver. The four campuses were chosen from a pool of 11 applicants.

For more information, contact Todd Sedmak, Internet2, or 202-803-8978. Follow future developments about the Innova Dash UEV on Twitter via @Internet2 or #I2Dash.

About Internet2

Internet2® is a member-owned advanced technology community founded by the nation’s leading higher education institutions in 1996. Internet2 provides a collaborative environment for U.S. research and education organizations to solve common technology challenges, and to develop innovative solutions in support of their educational, research, and community service missions. Internet2 offices are located in Ann Arbor, Mich.; Denver, Colo.; Emeryville, Calif.; Washington, D.C; and West Hartford, Conn. or @Internet2 on Twitter.

About Innova UEV LLC

Innova UEV, a zero emissions electronic vehicle company, is based in the Chicago suburb of Burr Ridge, Illinois. With a maximum speed of 35 mph and an estimated 100-mile range, the Innova Dash plugs into any standard garage 240-volt outlet at the cost of less than 25¢-a-day to operate.