TPS Appointed as Project Partner in Joint Venture to Create a Smart Network of Rapid EV Charging Hubs

Turbo Power Systems Ltd (TPS) are pleased to announce that they have entered into a strategic partnership with Ricardo Energy & Environment, Western Power Distribution, Electricity North West and Vectos for the demonstration of a novel, smart DC network of rapid Electric Vehicle (EV) chargers as part of an Ofgem funded program called DC Share.

TPS will supply their innovative Silicon Carbide based Smart Grid Tied Inverters (SGTI), which will be connected to multiple sub-stations, creating an interconnected DC network between the SGTIs. This, in itself, will enable power balancing between unequally loaded sub-stations to generate additional capacity in the low voltage electricity distribution network.

The resulting DC network creates the opportunity to connect multiple rapid vehicle chargers with minimal impact to the existing AC distribution network. Supporting multiple high-power vehicle chargers using DC Share enables the resulting load on each sub-station to be equalised, further maximising available capacity whilst minimising losses on the distribution network. TPS will, therefore, also develop and demonstrate unique 50kW and 100kW rapid chargers that can connect to the DC network as part of DC Share.

A further benefit of such an approach is to reduce the number of conversions on the charger, and hence improve the efficiency.  Ultimately, DC Share provides a cost effective and more efficient alternative, both at the network and on the charger level, for installing localised clusters of high power rapid EV chargers particularly in densely populated urban areas.

This project comes as part of the Government’s Clean Growth Strategy which sets out the importance of accelerating the shift to Low Carbon Transport with one of its key aims being to “Develop one of the best EV charging networks in the world” alongside the policy of ending the sale of new conventional petrol and diesel engine cars and vans by 2040.

Currently there are approximately 200,000 EV’s on the roads which equates to approximately 0.5% of vehicles in the UK; in order to meet the Government’s Clean Growth Strategy targets it is essential that the EV charging infrastructure across the UK is heavily invested in to make the targets achievable. Provision of accessible rapid charging facilities is key to the consumer uptake of an EV; users must be able to charge their EVs in a manner that is at least as convenient as current refuelling methods.

DC Share will make best use of existing assets to provide rapid EV charging facilities and network equalisation; the developed technology will use the latent capacity between adjacent sub-stations with different load profiles, some with commercial profiles and some domestic profiles, to provide capacity for EV charging from the most appropriate location. DC Share will facilitate the fast and flexible connection of high-power charging points for EVs and support future Low Carbon Technology (LCT) demands, and the network design makes use of the diversity of charging load to provide greater capacity than equivalent solutions.

Nigel Jakeman, Engineering and Business Development Director at TPS comments, “Providing a network for low carbon transport is one of the most pressing issues we face as an industry at this time. As a forward-thinking technology innovator, we have an obligation to contribute to the success of the Government’s Clean Growth Strategy target and so we are delighted to be working on this ground-breaking programme alongside our partners.

“The current focus for companies operating within both the energy and the automotive industry is understanding how we make owning an EV more attractive to the consumer. By implementing rapid EV charging stations, we are minimising the day-to-day impact this transition will potentially have on drivers. Charging an EV at a rapid charge point will be just like pulling up to a petrol station, by drawing latent capacity across multiple sub-stations the driver will be able to charge their EV within minutes. We truly believe that this technology will change the perception of owning an EV for the better.”