Software platform enables Europe-wide e-car charging

May 30, 2013 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
A joint venture of carmakers and energy provides has launched a software platform that enables e-car charging stations operators across Europe to exchange billing information. Thus, they offer a charging infrastructure mechanism similar to roaming in the telecommunications segment. And users of electric vehicles can travel without worrying about finding a charging station.

Carmakers BMW and Daimler and power utilities EnBW and RWE along with automotive supplier Bosch and technology group Siemens AG formed a joint venture named Hubject GmbH that aims at providing the billing hub for charging data across Europe. This week, the billing hub went operational; it bears the name intercharge. "By launching this eRoaming platform, we provide the solution for an elementary problem of electromobility", said Hubject general manager Andreas Pfeiffer. "Intercharge enables simple charging for all users of electric vehicles everywhere". The Europe-wide data exchange between intercharge-compatible charging stations makes multiple charging contracts redundant; the only condition is that the charging station operator is connected to Hubject's e-roaming system.

Intercharge is based on a backend software from Bosch subsidiary Bosch Software Innovations, eMobility Starter Package. This software supports two of the most important interface protocols - Open Intercharge Protocol (OICP) and Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP); the support of additional international standards such as ISO15118 is on Bosch's to-do list.