India may have bought into the EV dream but it is yet to pave a path forward. As opposed to Internal Combustion Engines, EVs require ultra-fast electric charging stations to run. As the total no. of EVs are forecasted to be around 2billion, the need for fast, cost-efficient charging stations is on the rise. The global market for EV charging stations is expected to grow at 44% CAGR by 2025, which estimates to be $28.93 billion.
The current challenge with Electric Vehicles is the overall time it takes for a full charge – somewhere around 8 hours using a standard charger. Compare it with the time taken to refill our conventional petrol/ diesel vehicle and we can understand why people in India are a bit hesitant to go for EVs as of today. Right from the inception of electric vehicles, every company in the industry is working on devising technology that can close the gap between the time taken to charge electric vehicles and to refill a gasoline tank.
Overview of Ultra-Fast Charging Stations for EV over the globe
Countries like the US, UK, Australia have already adopted fast and ultra-fast charging stations with ease of use for the customers. Companies like Volkswagen, TATA are trying to build their networks of fast-charging stations across countries.
Fast-growing EV markets like India are expecting to build up to 2655 UFCS by 2023, one at each 25kms.
While customers look for cheaper and quick solutions, understanding the types of charging systems and the cost to set up and use a charging station can be quite a task. These Ultra-Fast Charging Stations (UFCS) are DC micro-grid based concept and promise to reach the EVs power requirement in less than 10mins.
Governments across the globe are urging companies to make these UFCS easy to use. In a few countries, these UFCS are more or less similar to any fuel station from a usage perspective. Across Europe, E.On has already built 3,000 UFCS with 175kW ultra-fast charging capability. The steps from finding a UFCS and driving away with your vehicle fully charged are rather simple.
Various companies across the globe have opted for a similar model which makes charging EVs hassle-free.
AC charging (level 1 and level 2) is idle for simpler, less tech –equipped EVs like two-wheelers, while DC charging is for big and technical heavy EVs.
UFCS for personal and office use
There are companies like Charge Point that provide mobile charging stations. Their customers are major:
- Corporate offices that want to offer an in-house charging station for their employees or
- Individuals for personal use or want to set up a booth like station.
These stations are easier to install as they require zero to minimum infrastructure. The cost of such a mobile station is somewhere around the one offered by Tesla and the software varies as per need. It approximately costs $1000-1500 depending on the manufacturing company and features.
Public UFC station
Building a Public UFCS is quite a business topic, the requirements to build one are plenty, and cost varies as you change cities, countries, and services offered. In Asian- pacific areas, it can cost you about 1 to 40 lakhs INR. But since this market is evolving, the cost is expected to come down with time.
Since the idea has gone large, many have proposed and implemented various other sources to cut the cost down. While most companies are trying their hand at utilizing the solar power supply, the wind is another alternative we are looking at. To give you an idea about the amount of power a UFCS can consume, a single station offering UFCS can take the power that charges a whole Walmart which necessitates the need for alternate renewable power sources.
As such, the countries that have higher sunlight can be a boon. EVs will be soon charged with nothing but sunlight.
Know more about newly launched Electric Cars across the globe.
EV Duniya Editorial: This article is written by Natasha Talesara