Utilizing a bi-directional, high-power, DC fast-charging infrastructure is the best long-term answer for charging medium- and heavy-duty electric vehicle (EV) fleets, according to a recent study conducted by G2M Research.
The study, The Challenges of Charging Medium/Heavy Duty Electric Vehicle Fleets, sponsored by Rhombus Energy Solutions, also found that using onboard or offboard Level 1 or Level 2 AC chargers as the primary charging infrastructure for medium- and heavy-duty EVs can seriously impair fleet availability. The report investigates best practices to effectively address issues such as unavailability of high-power utility feeds and the integration of photovoltaic (PV) solar energy resources into the charging infrastructure.
“While charging electric automobiles in homes, at work and at commercial establishments has become fairly common, there is considerable confusion regarding what is needed to charge medium- and heavy-duty vehicles,” says Karen Heumann, lead analyst for electrification infrastructure at G2M Research. “This is especially true when technologies such as vehicle-to-grid (V2G) are included in the requirements. The result is that many fleet operators are overwhelmed by the choices and issues facing them as they electrify their fleet, and are uncertain how to proceed effectively when selecting technologies for their charging infrastructure.”
Due to the sizeable financial impact that vehicle availability has on fleet operations, medium- and heavy-duty fleet EV chargers must have extremely high reliability and be highly serviceable. They must also be able to operate at rated power on a near-continuous basis due to the significantly higher battery capacity.
Additionally, many fleet operators are now being required to incorporate V2G technology into their EV fleets. V2G enables these fleet vehicles to power critical infrastructure during emergencies and reduce the impact on the grid during peak hours – while at the same time significantly reducing energy costs for fleet operators. For medium- and heavy-duty EV fleets, V2G can only be reasonably accomplished with bi-directional, high-power, DC chargers.
Rhombus Energy Solutions’ chargers are designed specifically for medium- and heavy-duty EV fleet operators and their use cases. They are V2G capable with certification to UL 1741-SA for bi-directional operation. The company has deployed hundreds of high-power, bi-directional fast EV charging systems for medium- and heavy-duty fleet customers in demanding operational environments.
To read G2M Research’s full The Challenges of Charging Medium/Heavy Duty Electric Vehicle Fleets study, click here.