With Wi-Fi connectivity in an electric vehicle (EV) charging station EV owners will be able to remotely monitor and control the charging of their vehicles with Wi-Fi, presenting dozens of potential use cases from home automation to checking the availability of nearby public charge points. The reference design uses TI’s SimpleLink Wi-Fi wireless microcontroller (MCU) technology that allows design engineers to create stations that intelligently charge at non-peak times or detect and communicate when a charging station is available.
One barrier to widespread EV charging station adoption is the amount of time it takes to charge a vehicle. The reference design supports Level 1 charging, which is compatible with household outlets, as well as Level 2 EV charging, which helps vehicle owners tap into higher current (15A to 30A and higher) connections available in commercial office buildings. Level 2 chargers typically take up to eight hours to fully charge the vehicle if the owner wants to plug it in while at work.
Later in 2016 TI plans to introduce a Level 3 EV direct-current charger reference design scalable to 600V and 400A that cuts charging time down to only 20-30 minutes – enough time to stop at a Wi-Fi enabled restaurant that has a charging station and charge the vehicle during lunch. TI has a blog post on the topic, Electric vehicle charging stations are getting smarter and charging faster.
In its present implementation, the EV Charging Station with Wi-Fi reference design is capable of power delivery up to 30 A, but expandable by using larger relays.
The design can be downloaded from; www.ti.com/tool/tidc-evse-wifi
TI also offers; information on its electric vehicle service equipment (EVSE) charging solutions for Level 1 and 2 and new designs for Level 3 charging. And, a post on; Why you can't overlook Wi-Fi: It's the connectivity that's here to stay
next page; TI infographic on the charging station technology.