DC Fast Charging Explained
With electric cars gaining popularity, more people are starting to realise the benefits of a DC Fast Charging Station. Fast charging is critical infrastructure in Australia, especially for long-distance travel and the future of EV adoption. But this is a new technology and with it comes many questions. What is DC charging? Which charger should I choose? Are chargers worth it? How much electricity do I need to charge? In this guide, I will address all your questions and help you decide if DC charging is for you.
What is DC Fast Charging?
The term ‘fast charging’ is heard a lot when talking about electric vehicles but what exactly is DC Fast Charging? The simple idea of DC charging is to directly charge the battery with the type of power required. The battery of an electric vehicle needs DC (direct current) power but the electrical grid provides AC (alternating current) power.
DC charging stations will convert the energy within the charging station from AC to DC before being plugged into the car. This skips the process of converting power after it enters the car and makes charging your electrical vehicle much faster and more efficient.
Should I get a DC Fast Charger?
If you are looking for a residential charger,a DC charger is unnecessary and unrealistic. DC chargers are suitable for high turnover areas where fast charging is essential such as along major highways, petrol stations and commercial fleet car parks. The main benefit is faster EV charging in 1-2 hours (on average for electric cars), rather than 6-9 hours of charge time for an AC charger. This type of charging is perfect for commercial businesses where the duration of stay is usually under an hour, such as the local grocery store, fast-food restaurant, or service stations. DC charging is also common in commercial fleets where vehicles are constantly on the move, especially trucks and vans.
What are the differences between the different DC chargers?
The output of our DC chargers ranges from 30kW to 150kW. The higher the number, the more energy the charging station will use and therefore how much faster it will charge a vehicle. Although it charges faster, the charger also uses more energy therefore your site must be assessed to understand the energy limitations. All models of our DC charging range have dual charging capabilities, with the 120kW model charger having the most versatility of 2x DC, AC and e-bike simultaneous charging. The ideal charger will be dependent on the site and how the charger will be used. If you want to find out the best DC charging station for your site, it is best to speak to our team.
How much electricity do I need to support a DC Fast Charger?
To support the fast-charging capabilities of a fast charger, a significant level of electricity is needed. Each DC charger requires different levels of energy input. For the 60kW model, 100 amps per phase. The 120kW requires 230 amps per phase and the 150kW requires 250 amps per phase. These input levels are based on each DC charger, therefore the more chargers on the network, the more energy is needed. It is essential to speak to a qualified electrician to ensure your site can handle the energy input levels for the DC charger.
If you are looking to invest in EV charging now to prepare for the future, a DC charger is a great option. As the market for EVs continues to expand, DC chargers will only grow in demand and are a great way to promote your business’ sustainability goals. Oculars’ diverse range of EV chargers makes it easy for you to invest in infrastructure for the future. Consider where you will be charging, how often and the size of the vehicles. Our expert EV team will guide any installer on a DC charging project.