Thursday, September 29, 2022

Is This The Fix For Electric Car Charger Speed Stress?

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One of the greatest challenges that electric vehicle makers face is the availability of a robust charging infrastructure to reap the benefits of sustainable mobility. But the problems don’t end there. Blame it on lack of standardization on an industrial scale or poor consumer education about EVs, but electric car owners are often left scratching their heads about the peak charging wattage at a station, plug compatibility, and payment, among others. Electrify America, which aims to have no less than 1,800 charging stations under its belt by 2026, has a solution.

The company has announced that all its charging stations will now be labeled across two categories based on their power output for easy identification. The first one is Hyper-Fast, which delivers a maximum charging output of 350 kW and is targeted at high-end EVs. The second label is Ultra-Fast and covers 150 kW for EV charging. The former’s label will have three lightning bolt icons alongside the charging port’s design for easy identification, while the latter will have two lightning bolts to demonstrate its slightly lower power delivery.

The green Hyper-Fast charging plug means it that each minute, it can deliver enough electrical juice for the car to travel 20 miles. The teal-colored Ultra-Fast outlets can pump 9 miles worth of electrical power per minute into your car’s battery pack. Electrify America says it will roll out the Ultra-Fast and Hyper-Fast labels for its existing as well as upcoming charging outlets across the United States and Canada.

Intelligent power delivery with Balanced class

Robert Barrosa, a senior executive at Electrify America and its Canadian wing, remarked that the company wants to “make the transition to EV charging easier by translating kilowatt ratings into simpler names.” In addition to simplifying things with the Hyper-Fast and Ultra-Fast labels, the company is also embracing a new breed of chargers classified as Balanced. Charging outlets with the Balanced sticker will be able to deliver 350 kW of peak output, the same as Hyper-Fast type stations.

However, the core idea behind Balanced chargers is prioritizing power sharing between two vehicles while also delivering the highest charging rate possible. As such, if a vehicle is currently hooked to a Balanced charger plug and drawing 150 kW of power, the other plug linked to the same station will draw the remainder. But as soon as the first vehicle leaves, power is routed to the adjacent plug to boost it all the way up to 350 kW.

Every new Electrify America charger that is rated for 350 kW output will feature the Balanced label moving ahead. The new Hyper-Fast, Ultra-Fast, and Balanced labels will start appearing at Electrify America charging stations this Fall, while those installed in Canada will get the same treatment early next year. To further boost customer convenience, Electrify America recently partnered with Ikea to install over 220 fast chargers with 350 kW output across 25 store locations in 18 states.

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