So, being only about 6 months behind the times, the SAE released their combo plug standard about a week before Daytona happened. With the Japanese CHAdeMO standard gaining popularity with the, Tesla doing their own thing and the J1772 AC charging stations looking inadequate in comparison, people were having a hard time understanding why the SAE was being so stuborn as to insist they needed their won standard. Chelsea Sexton took a shot at the SAE (and everyone else kind of) in a piece for one of the major tech sites. It looked like the SAE was just being silly arrogant Americans standing in the way of progress. But it actually seems they really did have a better idea.
Before I go to deep lets review the differences between AC and DC charging. AC chargers are actually nothing but fancy electrical sockets and rely on on-board chargers. the problem with on-board chargers are that they are small. Most Leafs only come with 3.kW chargers, only now to have a 6kw chargers as on option for the new cars. An Empluse has a 3kW charger, and the Zeros are up to almost 2kW. The Ford Focus electric was supposed to have come with a 6kW charger from last I knew, and the Tesla come with a 10kW and you have the option adding a second for 20kW on onboard charging power. Most J1772 charging stations are good for 9kW, and the beefier ones even more. It’s a bit of a waste really, especially when pretty much all of the batteries in EVs now a days can take up to a 1C charge. In other words if you could put a 9kW charge on an Empulse you could charge it in an hour at just about every J1772 station out there. But that charger would be HUGE, and there’s just no room. The AC chargering stations are handy, and with a car as big as a Tesla, a minimum. The on-board chargers will not get smaller, so what do we do?
Well we go DC charging. (more…)