When charging electric cars, we distinguish two basic types of charging. The first is alternating current charging (AC). This type of charging uses your car’s internal charger. This in turn means that your battery’s charging speed will depend on the capacity of your car’s internal charger and on the maximum power provided by the charging station. Electric vehicle chargers can be designed as one (Type 1, Type 2), two (Type 2) or three (Type 2) phase. Recharging speed also depends on how the charging station is connected to the electric car’s on-board charger. If a three-phase on-board charger is connected to a single-phase charging station, then its power is limited by a third.
The second type of charger is direct current (DC) charging, also called ‘fast’ or ‘super-fast’. The charging station is directly connected to your electric traction battery and controls the entire charging process. The charging speed depends on the performance of the charging station, which directs AC power from the grid, and converts it to a voltage level suitable for the vehicle battery. Not every electric car supports DC fast charging. Sometimes you will see references to ‘super-fast’ or ‘ultra-fast’ DC charging. These words usually just indicate DC fast charging with power over 50kW.
In general, your charging speed is also affected by the condition of your car battery - mainly charge level and battery temperature. With low (0 - 20%) and high (80 - 100%) charge levels as well as low and high battery temperatures, your charging speed is limited.
Many people think that fast charging is the only way to develop and widen the acceptance of electric cars. This belief stems from our experience with combustion cars, where refuelling takes a few minutes.
However, the advantage of an electric car is that it can have a “petrol station” practically anywhere. Whenever it stops, it can refuel (at home, at work, while shopping, at a meeting, in a cafe, etc.). Because of this, in places with high numbers of electric vehicle visits (shopping centres, housing estates, residential areas) it is more important to focus on how many cars can be recharged at once, rather than how fast.
Imagine a situation where 10 electric vehicles are parked in the shopping centre. Some of the drivers are window shopping, others are at the cinema, others are shopping in the supermarket. In this scenario, all the cars will be parked for at least an hour. For simplicity, let's say that every electric car has an onboard charger with a power of 11 kW, and a 30 KWh battery. That means that the power consumption of all 10 cars using AC charging stations is 110 kW. During that hour, each car charges enough for about 50 km of driving, which is enough to get home (even for out of town commuters), where the electric car can recharge again.
In contrast, if the shopping centre offered two 50 kW fast charging stations (total power of 100 kW), then two electric cars could be charged to full capacity in 40 minutes, but the others would be out of luck until the drivers of the fully charged cars returned and left. So, in many cases, AC charging is the best way to get the most power to the most people
Another equally important element is the cost. The AC charging station load for 10 parking spaces will be roughly one fifth of that for the two fast charging stations.
All our stations comply with EU standards for AC and DC fast charging. The OlifeEnergy DC Station can be equipped with CCS connectors (DC-Combo, Combined Charging System) and / or Chademo connectors. AC stations have Mennekes (Type 2) and Yazaki (Type 1) plugs.
In addition to all kinds of EV connections, we offer a complete range of charging stations: Full-featured stations for regular use, IndustryBoxes for compact charging and households, and portable chargers. All are available in both AC and DC fast charging versions.
We currently offer three control mechanisms. The simplest mode is automatic functioning. This means that charging starts automatically as soon as the car is connected.
Our mobile control application is more commonly used. This provides payment options, advanced remote monitoring, charging history overview, navigation to public charging stations including places to spend time while recharging, and other invaluable features.
Another option is to authorise charging using an RfID card or chip. Authorized cards can be stored locally in the station (AC and IndustryBox) or on a remote server.
You are charged for the energy you use at our public stations via a card payment. You enter your card number in the application, but that data is not stored by us. Instead it is transmitted directly to the card transaction agent, just like when paying by card at an e-shop.
Olife is ready and able to build charging station networks in your country. These can be either Olife branded or ‘white label’. In either case you will benefit from the advantages of our mobile app and Powered by Olife cloud software.
OlifeEnergy charging stations can be operated in all EU countries for which they are certified (CE, EMC, LVD, environmental tests) and in all other countries recognized by European certification authorities. If you are outside the EU, we can, (provided volumes are sufficient), assist you in complying with your local regulations. In most cases this will not be difficult.
If you are interested in installing a station, in building your own charging network or becoming an OlifeEnergy dealer, please contact us.