Electric vehicle charging systems software firm EV Connect is launching a program aimed at standardizing EV charger management and use for both transportation fleets and charging-equipment developers.
The EV Charge Station Certification program already has been completed by seven of the industry’s largest charger makers in North America, Europe and Asia. They include Delta Group, EVBox and Webasto.
The certification program is a bid to encourage charging-station and software developers to standardize on EV Connect’s cloud-based charging-management platform, although there is no obligation to sign up for the company’s services, said Jordan Ramer, EV Connect’s chief executive.
VHS VS. BETAMAX
By maintaining their own unique networks, charging station operators are perpetuating a VHS versus Betamax system that can deprive motor carries of data and services necessary to efficiently operate electric vehicles, Ramer said.
The so-called EVCS certification program builds on the international Open Charge Point Protocol that software developers can use to design communication systems linking charging stations into various charging networks.
Station manufacturers who obtain EVCS Certification demonstrate that their equipment operates properly with all “open charge” protocol software and on EV Connect’s cloud-based platform, Ramer told Trucks.com.
That means drivers can use any of the linked charging stations, regardless of their manufacturer, and that fleet operators can collect all pertinent data from the stations, Ramer said. They can use smartphone-based apps to locate charging stations and check for prices and operating conditions.
Fleet operators also can use the networked systems to schedule charging times for periods when electricity rates are lowest, no matter what time of day the driver actually plugs the truck into the station.
The open-network charging system also permits charging-station providers to collect use and operating data by linking all of their machines on a single network through EV Connect if they choose to do so, Ramer said.
The EVCS program permits process can largely be done remotely to permit self-certifying. A representative of EV Connect or or a member charging-station developer makes a final, physical visit to an application’s station to verify that it works properly.
There is no cost to obtain certification, Ramer said.