May 20, 2022

Connected Charging Infrastructure is a Prerequisite for eMobility

According to PowerCircle, just over 32 thousand new rechargeable vehicles (electric vehicles) were introduced on to Sweden’s roads during the first quarter of the year, with the total number reaching 340 thousand. The electrification of heavy trucks is also continuing at a rapid pace, with close to one hundred electric trucks already on the roads.

These are positive figures, but how is Sweden doing in eMobility? In Sweden, 6% of the passenger fleet is rechargeable, which is above the average of 1% within the EU. However, Sweden is still far behind Norway, where The Norwegian Road Federation (OFV Opplysningsrådet for Veitrafikken) reports that the numbers are increasing at a record pace, with as many as 86% of newly registered passenger cars during Q1 being fully electric, and a total of just over 20% of all passenger cars in Norway rechargeable.

So, will all electric cars in Sweden be able to charge in 2030? Maybe we have reached a so-called social tipping point. According to the latest forecast from PowerCircle, 100% of all new car sales in 2030 will be electric due to:

  • Increased acceptance from customers, combined with reduced range anxiety
  • Falling prices
  • Clearer policies and regulations within the EU and Sweden.

If this becomes a reality, the development of charging infrastructure will be a challenge. According to the Nordic database Nobil In Sweden, the number of registered public charging stations now amounts to 2,689, with the total number of charging points 14,575. In March, ACEA (European Automobile Manufacturers Association) presented their ‘masterplan’  that showed that within the EU, 14 thousand new charging points per week (!) are needed are needed in order to reach the climate targets of 55 percent reduced emissions by 2030.

According to European engineering consutancy company Sweco, passenger cars will be expected to account for about 70-75% of additional electricity use. But the biggest challenge is not the energy, but the effect we will need in order to expand. The network’s maximum effect normally occurs around 5 pm in Sweden when people come home from work – in other words, when so-called behavior-controlled electricity consumption occurs. So, when should all vehicles be charged?

This is where smart charging becomes critical. What does that mean? The two graphs from Sweco show how the need for power decreases in Sweden if we can move from behavioral control charging to smart charging.

When different actors discuss smart charging, it is important to understand that “smart” can refer to several different things. Smart charging, unlike direct charging, means that charging is adapted based on various parameters and, for example, takes place with reduced power or at a later time. The charge can be said to be smart from the user’s perspective but also from an electrical system perspective.

To facilitate the discussions about smart charging going forward, PowerCircle has introduced a few different levels of smart charging as a staircase where the charging increasingly takes into account the needs of the electrical system.

  • Level 0 – unsmart charge
  • Level 1 – charging with smart settings
    • control and monitor connected via app
  • Level 2 – smart charging within the business
    •  power monitor – control so the power you ordered is used efficiently
    • load balancing – distribution between different charging points over time or depending on power requirements
    • charge optimized for own electricity production or own driving pattern
  • Level 3 – smart charging in Sweden
    • control and planning based on spot price in the electricity area
    • control-based on power prices
    •  dynamic electricity contracts
  • Level 4 – optimized smart charging
    • control towards, for example, different electricity markets
    • the vehicle becoming part of the electrical system and storage, so-called vehicle-2-grid

How can we as a provider of connectivity contribute?

Smart charging infrastructure requires connectivity that meets the markets’ requirements for measurement, reliability, and fast response times. Sometimes measurement is needed down to the second level, which can mean that even the new smart meters need to be supplemented.

For vehicle-to-grid functionality, it is also required that the new communication standard ISO 15118 is implemented in both the charger and the vehicle, which is done with the charging standard Chademo (fast charging method for battery electric vehicles) today.

With connectivity there also comes the issue of security. When the charging infrastructure becomes a critical part of society’s infrastructure, it must be protected from cyber attacks. And smart charging infrastructure is also based on communication between vehicles and charging infrastructure, which means that personal integrity must also be protected.

Fiber and mobile connection of charging infrastructure, based on the functionality of the Internet of Things, will be good options for connecting charging infrastructure. In addition, there are security services that ensure that:

  • The charging infrastructure is protected against intrusion by unauthorized persons
  • Data integrity is protected via encryption
  • Accessibility via redundancy and traffic over private infrastructure (not internet)

It’s very exciting to be part of the solution to achieve Sweden’s climate goals! Read more about how our customers contribute to the ecosystem around smart charging.

If you would like to learn more about how IoT can enable your business, please get in touch.

Linda Ekener Mägi
Business Development
Tele2 B2B

Get in touch