Rampant use of DC fast charging will reduce EV battery life by 10-15%: SemaConnect

'Most passenger EV cars should have a rectifier capable of handling at least 7.2Kw of AC charge. As better EV models appear in the country, battery sizes will get bigger and hence the need to charge with at least 7.2 Kw.'

By:October 18, 2021 11:47 AM

Electric vehicle charging is still a subject that invites a discussion about the various aspects of it – how often should you charge your EV, how many units does it consume to charge it, how much does it cost and several other such queries. And this, because charging an EV isn’t exactly the equivalent of filling up a car at a fuel station. A sturdy charging infrastructure could assist in promoting electric mobility. So, we got in touch with a player working in this very field. Prashant Radhakrishnan, Vice President (Sales & Marketing), India, SemaConnect tells us more.

How can connected technology ensure efficiency in EV charging networks?

Connected technology solutions for EV charging are a critical piece in the EV charging puzzle. Connected chargers allow for “Management” of chargers and charge policies effectively.

Doing things like pricing differentials for peak/ nonpeak hours; load management can be all be done via connected charging point management systems.

This will prove very beneficial to overall capacity management and hence effective rollout of EV charging facilities in any given location.

How is SemaConnect contributing to the setting up of sturdy EV charging infrastructure in India?

SemaConnect has over a dozen years of experience in setting up charging infrastructure across North America. We have over 15000 charging stations deployed there at present.

This experience and learning have ensured that we bring all the best practices and initiatives that we have developed over the years in one shot to the Indian market.

Features like “Load Management” and OCPP & OCPI certification make us unique in the Indian marketplace apart from having built and deployed hardware that has now been running for over 10 years seamlessly.

Also read: Batt:RE LO:EV electric scooter review | All it needs is a tidy charging habit

How much do you think personal electric vehicles will depend on public charging stations? Is battery degradation on fast charging something to be concerned about?

Our experience in Western Markets is that 85%-90% of all charging takes place at the residence or at offices. Given the time that vehicles are stationary at these locations, these are ideally suited to AC charging. The (Internal Combustion Engine) ICE consumer mindset of having to go to a fuel station changes once one owns an EV. Instead of going to a “Fuel Station”, the mindset becomes having a “Fuel Station” where my car is…this is the mindset change that happens naturally and hence the need to have widespread adoption of AC EV charging.

DCFC (DC Fast Charging) use case is particularly relevant only for Inter-City travel. The battery degradation problem is relevant and rampant use of DC Fast Charging will reduce the effective life of your battery by 10%-15%.

How can EV charging station efficiency be improved through pricing?

Most passenger EV cars should have a rectifier capable of handling at least 7.2Kw of AC charge. As better EV models appear in the country, battery sizes will get bigger and hence the need to charge with at least 7.2 Kw.

Pricing can be used effectively to manage loads and avoid overload doing peak hours and encourage use during off-peak hours. As the number of EVs increases, this is undoubtedly going to start affecting the grids and hance smart chargers and systems with the ability to do differential pricing and load management will become a key part of an effective EV strategy.

What is SemaConnect’s current expanse of business? What are the expansion plans?

Currently, SemaConnect makes over 5000 charging stations per year in India. These are largely sold in the North American market; however, we expect the Indian market to pick up considerably in the next few years. This along with the expected high growth in Western Markets means that we expect both manufacturing and sales to expand to double and triple our size in the coming 3 years.

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