SAE poised to reject Japan's fast-charge choice
SAE International expects to set a standard for electric vehicle fast-charging equipment that differs from the system Japanese automakers want, the head of SAE's task force says.
Gery Kissel, a General Motors engineer leading the group, says the task force aims to publish its standards for direct current fast chargers by late July or early August. Those standards likely would become the standard for U.S. companies.
DC fast charging, also known as Level 3 charging, uses 480 volts and can recharge a battery pack to 80 percent charge in a half-hour or less. A fast-charging infrastructure is seen as critical to support broader use of EVs.
Kissel says SAE expects to favor a different technology from the CHAdeMO DC fast-charging system backed by most Japanese automakers. The CHAdeMO system was developed by a coalition including Nissan, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Subaru and Tokyo Electric Power Co. The group wanted its technology to be the world standard.
The SAE system would allow automakers to use a single plug for Level 2, or 240 volt, charging and fast-charging, whereas CHAdeMO requires a second plug, according to Kissel.
"It's one port into the car -- it fits in the gas-tank flap area," he says. "The customer only has to deal with one connector system."
Some charger makers already are moving forward with the system likely to be favored by the SAE task force. SPX Service Solutions, a business unit of SPX Corp., and Aker Wade Power Technologies plan to develop an all-in-one connector from SAE that provides Level 1, or 110-volt household current; Level 2; and DC fast charging, the companies said last month.
German supplier Bosch Group has agreed to purchase SPX Service Solutions. The deal is expected to be finalized in the first half of the year, subject to approval by regulators.
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