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Acciona Mobility: Driving the world toward low-carbon transport solutions with Google Cloud

About Acciona Mobility

Spanish multinational company Acciona is committed to developing and managing infrastructure and renewable energy. Its 40,000 employees across 65 countries are united by a mission to lead the transition toward a low-carbon economy.

Industries: Energy, Chemicals & Utilities
Location: Spain

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About Altostratus

Cloud expert Altostratus helps companies become more efficient and innovative, by guiding them on how to outsource services to the cloud

Committed to decarbonizing the transport industry and decongesting cities, Acciona Mobility chose Google Cloud to build a scalable and reliable IT infrastructure to support its long-term vision.

Google Cloud results

  • Supports IT provisioning with a scalable serverless infrastructure, eliminating the need to invest up front in hardware and software
  • Ingests and processes data from 10,000 scooters in real time, accurately showing users their location and availability
  • Protects applications against cyber attacks with always-on breach detection to ensure services are never interrupted

IoT data ingestion automated every 15 seconds

When you think about climate change, you might not consider a daily commute to work or a drive around town as big contributing factors. And yet, transport is the fastest growing source of CO2 emissions from fossil fuel, which in turn is the largest contributor to climate change. This is the key insight behind the mission of Spanish carbon-neutral multinational Acciona. The group, which provides sustainable solutions for infrastructure and renewable energy projects across 65 countries, launched an electric scooter sharing service called Acciona Mobility in 2018.

Aiming to contribute to the decarbonization of the transport sector while helping relieve traffic congestion within cities, Acciona Mobility enables users to rent electric scooters powered 100% by energy from renewable sources. Users can find, reserve, and rent the scooters at the tap of their mobile screens via the Acciona Mobility application and pay on the basis of minutes spent riding. The app, which is available free to download online, is also the gateway through which new users can register for the service, which welcomes anyone with a valid driver’s license for motorbikes. After having their right to drive, identity, and card details validated, citizens can start enjoying the service, available 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

“We needed to deploy a reliable infrastructure for a new service before understanding exactly what its scale and demand would be. Our strategy was to adopt a serverless architecture that can grow with us to sustain our long-term vision. This kind of thinking led us directly to Google Cloud.”

Jose Luis Rosell, CIO Services Division, Acciona

“Acciona Mobility is exciting because it stems from our vision to make people’s lives easier in a sustainable way,” says Jose Luis Rosell, CIO of Acciona’s Services Division. “40% of the pollution near cities comes from private transportation. We want to help solve that problem with zero-carbon, electric, multimodal transportation that’s also convenient for people to use.”

However, Jose Luis says that building the appropriate IT infrastructure to bring the new service to life required external support. “We needed to deploy a reliable infrastructure for a new service before understanding exactly what its scale and demand would be. Our strategy was to adopt a serverless architecture that can grow with us to sustain our long-term vision,” he explains. “This kind of thinking led us directly to Google Cloud.”

Developing the transportation platform of the future

Because Acciona was already a Google Cloud customer, Jose Luis and his team reached the decision to develop the new service on Google Cloud with ease, as he explains: “We had a very positive experience working closely with the Google Cloud team during Acciona’s first project on Google Cloud, and that collaborative mentality is very important for us. We feel Google Cloud is a trustworthy partner that is willing to take risks with us and is flexible enough to lead us through business uncertainty with the right technology,” he says. “So we were confident that its technology and people could help us bring the Acciona Mobility service from theory to reality.”

This time, Acciona partnered with cloud consultancy Altostratus as well, to consult on a selection of Google Cloud products that would help develop the application quickly by making use of managed services. Acciona’s strategy was to launch the new services first in Madrid, where the company is headquartered, and then spread the vision across more cities later, if the idea worked out well in practice. Due to the scale of the project and its data needs, BigQuery was chosen as the primary data warehouse to store all the information related to the service, such as the location of scooters and their availability status. With all its data readily available on BigQuery, Acciona is able to run specific queries that help it to gain insights such as which urban areas have the highest volume of scooters being rented. Knowing this, Acciona can reorganize availability to make sure there are always enough scooters in that specific location.

Integrating it with Pub/Sub and Dataflow, Acciona ensures that the data generated by scooters is ingested and processed in real time so that users searching for scooters nearby, using the Acciona Mobility application on their phones, can always have up-to-date information at hand. Using Google Maps Platform APIs such as the Directions API, Acciona’s mobile app translates the geographical coordinates of scooters into an easy-to-read address displayed beside a visual map. Using Cloud SQL, Acciona automates the storage capacity management of the database as the number of scooters and active users grow.

Meanwhile, Google Cloud Armor protects the service against cyber breaches and distributed denial of service attacks to keep it running uninterrupted. In addition, Google Cloud itself helps to reinforce the cyber security measures with secure-by-default managed services, such as data encryption. “The managed services mean more resilience and more uptime, because we don’t need to worry about maintenance or external threats,“ says Jose Luis of the solutions protecting all information generated by the new service, which as CIO is a topic he holds dearly. “I face cybersecurity issues more confidently as a Google Cloud partner,” he adds.

“Today, we have data coming in every 15 seconds from 10,000 electric scooters around Europe. BigQuery and Cloud SQL-managed services help us handle that data very carefully and with precision so that our users don’t experience any lags when searching for scooters or returning them.”

Jose Luis Rosell, CIO Services Division, Acciona

Expanding an 100% sustainable transport solution throughout Spain

Within two months of the decision to deploy Acciona Mobility on Google Cloud, the service was ready for launch, filling the streets of Madrid with 500 electric scooters that run 100% on renewable energy. By 2020, the number of scooters has grown to 10,000 and the service has scaled to multiple cities in and outside of Spain, including Lisbon, Milan, and Rome. To date, more than 3.5 million intracity rides have used the Acciona Mobility app, reducing CO2 emissions by more than 1,000 tons.

“Today, we have data coming in every 15 seconds from 10,000 electric scooters around Europe. BigQuery and Cloud SQL-managed services help us handle that data very carefully and with precision so that our users don’t experience any lags when searching for scooters or returning them,” says Jose Luis of the fast-growing scale of the project.

“Google Cloud enables us to keep our services always available and to scale quickly to respond to its growing demand. Our ratings have been very positive as a result. More importantly, our vision of transportation as a cleaner, more sustainable commodity is really spreading and resonating with the public.”

Jose Luis Rosell, CIO Services Division, Acciona

Set to continue expanding, Acciona is using Google Kubernetes Engine to make sure the Acciona Mobility application has the computing capacity it needs to continue scaling to reach new markets and serve more users. On that note, Google operations tools (formerly Stackdriver) are also being deployed to help monitor, troubleshoot, and improve the performance of the application as it scales.

“Google Cloud enables us to keep our services always available and to scale quickly to respond to its growing demand. Our ratings have been very positive as a result. More importantly, our vision of transportation as a cleaner, more sustainable commodity is really spreading and resonating with the public,” he concludes.

Tell us your challenge. We're here to help.

Contact us

About Acciona Mobility

Spanish multinational company Acciona is committed to developing and managing infrastructure and renewable energy. Its 40,000 employees across 65 countries are united by a mission to lead the transition toward a low-carbon economy.

Industries: Energy, Chemicals & Utilities
Location: Spain

About Altostratus

Cloud expert Altostratus helps companies become more efficient and innovative, by guiding them on how to outsource services to the cloud