electric vehicle (ev) charging Applications

Optimizing the business model.

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As charger and location are ironed out, it’s also vital to consider the specifics around who will be responsible for the station, how the station dispenses power, and how drivers will reimburse station owners for energy use (if at all).

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Ownership Model

Who is paying for the station and who is responsible for the site where it’s located:

Owner/operator

The charging station owner is responsible for installation, operation, and maintenance, and is often called the charging point operator (CPO). The CPO assumes all risks and costs of installation and operation and has control over the user experience and billing arrangements (if any).

Host/owner

In this case, the site host owns the space on which the charging station sits and also controls the power. In some cases, the charging station owner is fully responsible for coordinating with the utility, installing and operating the units without intervention from the host. In the case of multi-family charging, the property coordinates with utilities and electricians and sets community power-sharing rules while the resident pays for and owns the charging station hardware.

Usage Model

Does power dispensing need to be tracked:

Basic

Basic units are simple energy dispensing devices. They have no notion of user access control or billing for service. These are not usually appropriate for public charging applications and typically apply best to protected parking scenarios where usage data and cost recovery aren’t necessary.

Authenticated

Authenticated may be publicly available units and use a secondary device like a key fob or a mobile app to verify the identity of the user before dispensing power. These units can track energy usage by account; networked units can access this data and manage users remotely, while non-networked units do not have remote features.

Networked

Fully networked units are remotely accessible. Networked chargers provide advanced functionality that increase the utility of a station, such as automated demand response, dynamic billing arrangements, flexible business model adjustment, driver alerts for completed charges, remote diagnostics, and usage data.

Non-Networked

Provides access to people approved to use these stations. Users cannot be added remotely.

Billing Model

While some charging station owners choose to give power away for free, for example, to increase dwell time in retail scenarios, some CPOs choose to bill for charger use, either as a cost recovery effort or as a profit driver. This is also often a method to dis-incentivize bad driver behavior, such as occupying a charging station parking spot despite full charge.

How drivers pay for charging sessions:

Per Hour

Typical per-hour pricing does not vary throughout the day at the driver level but will vary for the host, based on peak demand and time-of-use rates.

Per Session

This is usually appropriate for scenarios where drivers will have shorter and more regular sessions, such as in certain workplace charging implementations.

Per kWh

This accurately accounts for the true cost of electricity for the charging station owner by charging drivers the “time-of-use” (TOU) rate but does not give an incentive for a car that is fully charged to leave the space.

Idling

Charging station owners can choose to penalize drivers who continue to occupy a charging space even after being fully charged.

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