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Main Standards and Protocols

Main Standards and Protocols for EV charging infrastructure
A hand holding a charging socket in front of a EV charging station
© Unsplash

To ensure a correct transition into E-Mobility services and solutions, it is necessary to implement protocols and standards to align and ensure proper implementation.

This article will mainly:

  • describe what interoperability is
  • present the communication protocols between service providers and charging station operators.

What is interoperability?

  • Enables communication between different equipment (from different manufacturers)
  • Enables access to charging infrastructure and additional services
  • Is a prerequisite for the further development of the EV sector and ensures connection to the electricity grid
  • Is also essential for governments and companies investing in charging infrastructure and services.

In other words, interoperability facilitates the use of chargers anywhere in the world; for example, if you travel from Argentina to Colombia, you will have no problem using the chargers because interoperability facilitates communication between different manufacturers.

In the following graph, you can see the projected growth per five-year period for the EV industry infrastructure, with a projection of more than tenfold growth by 2050 compared to the state in 2020.

An histogram showing the forecast of the global EV and charging infrastructure, from 2020 to 2050, divided into different components, including fast chargers, public chargers, and more.Click to expand

Global EV and charging infrastructure forecast. PEM Motion (2023)

Global standards and protocols in charging infrastructure

The EV charging infrastructure is based on a variety of standards and protocols to ensure safe, interoperable and efficient charging. The main standards and protocols used by the EV industry within the charging infrastructure, from the charging cables to the charging stations and the paths that transport the required charging energy, are shown below.

A scheme showing the different components of the charging infrastrucutre, including the socket, cables, connectors and the grid, with the standards and protocols used in each one.Click to expand

Infrastructure Standards. Elaadni (2022)

The following table shows some of the communication functions that the protocols have with their descriptions:

Functions Description
Authorize Charging Session Allows identification for charging at a charge point
Billing The process of sending an invoice to customers for goods or services
EV Charging This is essential to maintain the vehicle’s driving range and keep it operational.
Handle Registration Involves handling communication registrations / subscriptions
Manage Grid Being able to control a charge point, both the amount of capacity that is demanded from the grid as well as other factors
Operate Charge Point Involves being able to operate a charge point from a back office. This includes upgrading firmware, setting a charge point to available or unavailable / reserved / error, configuring charge points and repairing faults
Provide Charge Point Information Provide information about a charge point: Static (e.g. location) or Dynamic (availability) information
Reservation Involves functionality that is needed for an EV user to reserve a charge point
Roaming Involves exchanging information (primarily authorization) to enable EV users to charge using 1 token at different charge points of different EMSPs and CPOs
Smart Charging Involves all forms of smart charging (for whatever reason), ranging from simply being able to stop / restart charging during a charging session to schedule based charging

Conclusion:

The charging infrastructure for EVs relies on a wide range of critical protocols and standards to ensure security and interoperability between different charging providers and vehicle manufacturers.

As charging technology evolves, these protocols and standards must also adapt to ensure an optimal charging experience for EV users.

It is important that the industry continues to collaborate to develop and standardize innovative solutions that will enable greater adoption of EVs worldwide.

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Exploring the World of Electric Mobility: Key Concepts and Strategies

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