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    The realisation that future belongs to electric mobility has got sufficiently ingrained into public consciousness leading to rise in the sale of EVs. Thankfully enough, charging standards are also coming into shape increasing hopes of a robust EV infrastructure in the near future. Here goes an overview of the EV charging standards in India as applicable as of now.

    Purchasing an electric vehicle has started gaining popularity in the country with increased consciousness about sustainable living and multiple initiatives launched by the Government. The future, no doubt, belongs to electric and it won’t be long when fossil fuel-based vehicles would be eliminated altogether from the Indian roads. With the commercial cab fleet already going electric at a faster pace, it has become all the more essential to have an efficient charging system across the country.

    A key reason, among several others, for the sloppy growth of EV infrastructure in the country has been the uncertainty surrounding charging standards, electrical connectors, and communication protocols between EVs, charging stations and management platforms. Over the last few years, however, some sort of standardisation of charging infrastructure has taken shape.

    • With the commercial cab fleet already going electric at a faster pace, it has become all the more essential to have an efficient charging system across the country.
    • Though the committee’s report mentions nothing very specific about home-charging, it does recommend installation of a 30mA Residual Current Circuit Breaker (RCD) and an IEC 60309 to ensure safety.
    • In the report, public charging has been divided into two categories: Low voltage EVs and High voltage EVs. These two categories have been further sub-divided into AC and DC source.
    • Low Voltage EVs (DC Charging) require a Bharat EV Charger DC001 for PMAO. The EVs charge with an AC input voltage of 3-phase, 415V. It gives a maximum DC output of 15kW.

    In November 2017, Bharat Public EV Charger Specifications Committee laid out various standards for home as well as public charging. Though the committee’s report mentions nothing very specific about home-charging, it does recommend installation of a 30mA Residual Current Circuit Breaker (RCD) and an IEC 60309 to ensure safety.

    The main emphasis of the report has been on public charging as it involves electricity usage, which requires proper billing and payment.  In the report, public charging has been divided into two categories: Low voltage EVs and High voltage EVs. These two categories have been further sub-divided into Alternating Current (AC) and Direct Current (DC) source.

    Low Voltage EVs (AC charging) require a Bharat EV Charger AC001 for Public Metered AC Outlet (PMAO). The EVs charge from 230V standard single phase AC supply with a maximum output of 15A and at a maximum output power of 3.3 kW. These public chargers are slow and are meant for low-power vehicles.

    Low Voltage EVs (DC Charging) require a Bharat EV Charger DC001 for PMAO. The EVs charge with an AC input voltage of 3-phase, 415V. It gives a maximum DC output of 15kW and is mostly used in two-wheelers, three-wheelers and low-end four-wheelers. The charger has the ability to establish a digital communication between the charging station and the EV.

    High Voltage EVs (AC charging) use an International Electro-technical Commission (IEC) 62196 Type 2 charger. It generates a minimum of 22 kW AC output and is used in all-electric four-wheelers. It can also be used to charge two- and three-wheelers by using an adapter.

    High Voltage EVs (DC charging) use CCS (Combined Charging System) and CHAdeMo chargers that can manage power levels up to 50 kW. These chargers are used in all-electric four-wheelers, mostly commercial vehicles.

    Eventually, all electric vehicles would require faster-charging ports alone calling for an update of AC-001 and DC-001 standards. Since the future of the automobile industry is electric, it is incumbent upon the Government and the private players to come together and build a robust and sustainable charging infrastructure in the country.

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