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Plug standardisation

  • 6 February 2018
  • 7 replies
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Is it likely that EV plugs will be standardised in the future?

It is very difficult as an Environmental and Sustainability Manager to pre predict the types of plugs to put in for EV infrastructure and get buy in if it is all going to change in a few years
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Best answer by au_tom_otive 6 February 2018, 21:52

@AlexisK It's a common misconception that charging sockets are not standardised - they are!

Type 2 is the universal public charging socket. Every electric car currently on the market is able to charge on slow and fast charging points using a Type 2 cable (usually supplied with the car at purchase). All new public charging points (for AC charging) must have a Type 2 socket, so it is the standard for the majority of EV charging.

EVs that can rapid charge (and not all can; most plug-in hybrids cannot), selecting the connector for your car is no harder than reaching for the petrol or diesel pump. The added benefit is that you can't 'misfuel' when using a rapid charger!

Tom from Chargemaster
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Userlevel 1
Even if they don't standardise them you can buy adapters i think 🤔
Userlevel 2
For Fast (Mode 3) charging, a type 2 socket is pretty much universal. Drivers will carry a suitable cable themselves.

Rapid chargers, however, have several standards. Nissan, Mitsubishi and other Japanese companies use ChaDeMo, European manufacturers use CCS and Tesla have their own standard. The signalling between car and charger is part of the standard so adapters would have to be complex and bulky.

There is no sign of a global standard emerging so for the time being, it really is necessary to have three cables on each charger.
I doubt that sockets will be standardised in the near future because different vehicles have widely varying requirements. A Tesla for instance has a sizeable battery which requires a high current to recharge in a reasonable time, whereas our plug-in hybrid has a much smaller battery and can be charged from a 13A socket.

The infrastructure required for a Tesla socket is significantly more expensive than that for cheaper/smaller vehicles so it's unlikely that all public sockets would be aimed at the top-end vehicles, at least until a significant proportion of all vehicles are fully electric.

Hope this helps?
Because of the high power requirements when charging an EV adapters are not recommended.

There is an EU standard which is the Type2 socket. However, Type1 or J1772 is the norm in the USA so it is going to be difficult for a worldwide standard to emerge... but we live in hope 🙂
Userlevel 1
@AlexisK It's a common misconception that charging sockets are not standardised - they are!

Type 2 is the universal public charging socket. Every electric car currently on the market is able to charge on slow and fast charging points using a Type 2 cable (usually supplied with the car at purchase). All new public charging points (for AC charging) must have a Type 2 socket, so it is the standard for the majority of EV charging.

EVs that can rapid charge (and not all can; most plug-in hybrids cannot), selecting the connector for your car is no harder than reaching for the petrol or diesel pump. The added benefit is that you can't 'misfuel' when using a rapid charger!

Tom from Chargemaster
Thanks all for your comments. A Type 2 is what we are looking at but we were looking at Teslas (for a bit) to see if it was viable but we would need additional infrastructure to support them. Start with the Type 2 I think!
Userlevel 1
@AlexisK Teslas also charge on a Type 2 sockets for standard and fast AC charging. The only time they don't is on a Supercharger, which still uses the Type 2 inlet, but the cable has two DC charging pins within the layout to enable rapid charging.

Teslas can also rapid charge at 50kW using a CHAdeMO connector with an adapter that is readily available from Tesla and other suppliers.

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