Technology never ceases to amaze me within the automotive industry. Most of us are familiar with SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) and all their standards such as J 2534 (the J-Boxes we use for programming), but in regards to electric vehicles, they have some other universal standards that we should be aware of.
One standard that we all already know about is the J 1772, which is the standardized level 1 or 2 EV charging port with its 5-pin configuration. A very large percentage of PHEVs, and EVs utilize this connector for their charging port, which allows an AC charger to communicate and charge an electric drive type of vehicle. At this point, this is older information that most of us within the industry are already familiar with, so I don’t want to spend a great deal of time talking about this within the body of this article. Instead, I wanted to share the J2594 and J2594/2 standards.
These standards address charging an electric vehicle with a twist. We all already know about EV chargers and the various types of charging from level 1 (emergency chargers) all the way up to level 3, or DC fast charging. The drawback to these types of chargers is having to have a physical connection between the vehicle being charged and the EVSE(electric vehicle service equipment). There is a new technology that essentially cuts the cord so to speak.
Wireless EV charging allows one to have a transmitting plate either on (J 2594) or embedded into the ground (J 2594/2). These SAE standards address this ability for wireless charging and will be a real game changer for both EV owners and repair shops to make sure that the vehicle is operating as designed. Imagine the convenience of being able to just park the vehicle in a spot that has the charging plate on the ground and not having to attach a charging cord! Even better, imagine being able to drive down a road that is compliant and have the vehicle’s battery obtaining a charge while you are driving!
We should note that this technology is still relatively new and most current production models do not yet support this but that will change over the next few years. A simple diagram is provided below for illustration purposes but try to think of this like your wireless phone charger in the way that it is designed to work.
There are many new and exciting things happening in the EV world such as V2X (bi-directional) charging which even allows one to power their house or the grid off the energy stored within their EV battery. No matter our feelings about the EV revolution, it is time for us to be aware of these technologies and how they work so that we are prepared for service opportunities when these vehicles start to show up in our service bays. It is not too late to seek out a reputable training provider and get your entire shop up to speed on electric drive vehicles.
Image from chargedevs.com