Charging technology is absolutely crucial to the success of any electric machine. Oliver Johnson talks us through the current state-of-the-art

to a standstill in April, there has never been more attention on greenhouse gas emissions and their impact on climate change. Adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) will be vital to bringing emissions under control, particularly in the 19 countries around the world that have made a commitment to become carbon neutral by 2050, including the UK, France, Canada, Denmark and Spain. But one challenge to the widespread adoption of EVs is the need for suitable charging points to remove range anxiety. Most charging points today are domestic points that supply alternating current (AC) straight from the grid. It needs to be converted to direct current (DC) to charge the battery.

A 30

s the dust settles after the Extinction Rebellion climate change protests brought road traffic in central London

To do this, EVs have an AC-DC

converter but because space is limited inside car bodies, these are quite small, so the power capacity is limited to 7-11kW for most cars. If you’ve got a car with an 80kWh battery, such as a Jaguar I-PACE, Audi e-tron or a Tesla, it could take 8-12 hours or more to fully charge the battery. That’s fine for a domestic setting

but we know drivers want much faster charging times at other sites – which is possible with DC chargers. These roadside units house large and powerful AC-DC converters that provide anything from 20–350kW, which can charge a large vehicle battery to 80% of capacity in under 15 minutes. ABB has developed use cases that

determine the most appropriate power rating for any particular site.

Pantograph units support these buses At the low end, homeowners are

best off with a 3-22kW AC solution that provides a steady charge over 4-16 hours and doesn’t require them to upgrade their incoming supply. However, for offices and commercial buildings, hotels and hospitality sites, car dealerships and commuter car



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