21 January 2021
With the development of electrically-chargeable vehicles (EVs) driving forward at a pace, range anxiety will soon be a thing of the past. However, this could be replaced with charging anxiety, where consumers fear the infrastructure's availability, the time it takes and the ease of use.
Therefore, developing EV charging is of equal importance to the market, in order to make consumers comfortable with the new technology. There is likely to be a push to create more efficient and easy-to-use charging posts that will benefit drivers and operators of charging sites.
Siemens is one company pushing development to meet these needs. The company has announced a new public fast-charger, named the Sicharge D, which is suited for highway and urban locations where drivers require a quick battery top-up, such as shopping centres and parking locations.
The post is capable of charging at up to 1,000 volts, with scalable charging power of up to 300kW and a peak efficiency range of 96%. This figure is helped by a dynamic power-sharing feature, which accounts for each connected car's power demand and automatically adapts the charging process to the EV's battery technology and charging status. This ensures that the connected cars get the maximum power they need without any additional manual intervention.
The 96% efficiency rate means almost all the power picked up by the point from the grid is transferred to the vehicle, reducing wastage and helping to keep operating costs down for the operator.
Siemens is also aware of the need for charging points to adapt as charging capacities of EVs continue to improve in a developing market. This may mean that compared to today’s models, vehicles in the future could accept higher charging power and demand higher voltage ranges, especially if the battery is able to be recharged in a shorter space of time.
This demand is met through the scalable-charging power up to 300kW, either from the start of installation or through plug-and-play upgrades. Furthermore, the charger already supports voltages between 150 and 1,000 volts and currents of up to 1,000 amps across all DC outlets. This means it can cater for full-power loads for future 800 volt vehicles, as well as the lower-voltage charging rates demanded by current EVs.
‘With its upgradability and dynamic charging, it is a big step forward to support the future of electromobility. Our customers can be sure to be prepared for future eventualities of electromobility, be it an increasing number of required charging options or increasing charging speeds,’ said Birgit Dargel, global head of future grids at Siemens Smart Infrastructure. ‘At the same time, it is one of the most efficient fast chargers currently available on the market – an important aspect since building sustainable mobility requires careful handling of the scarce resources we are using.’
The Sicharge D is an example of how technology companies are working to meet the demand for charging infrastructure through new efficient and future-proofed, fast-charging points. By making the post more cost-effective for the operator, more points can be added in a single location. Adding the ability to scale up the point to cover future technologies will also reduce the need to replace them down the line, while also ensuring drivers are able to rely upon them whatever their vehicle type.
Other companies are also likely to develop charging points that offer efficient charging and a user-friendly experience.