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Plugging into CHAdeMO

At a recent CHAdeMO event, Nissan Senior Manager Junichi Kobayashi of the EV Component Development Group, EV System Engineering Department and EV Technology Development Division, spoke with the Global Media Center’s Dan Sloan about the rapid pace of development of CHAdeMO’s quick-charging technology.

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Q1. How is CHAdeMO technology advancing and where is it headed?

Junichi Kobayashi:

It’s been two years since the founding of the CHAdeMO association and we already sold 30,000 LEAFs in the world. That means those LEAFs are a kind of proof of the reliability of CHAdeMO, because we track all quick-charging and diagnosis by our global data center and we believe all the quick-charging is well performed. That means the reliability of CHAdeMO. That is the most important – one of the advantages for CHAdeMO.

And the second is compatibility. This DC quick-charging needs any kind of DC quick charger must have compatibility with LEAF and also i-MiEV and other new cars – maybe from Toyota or Honda. It is difficult to keep this compatibility, which requires technology, because how to keep compatibility with such different unknown vehicles or charging systems has another technological aspect that is very difficult for others to catch up to soon.

Q2. How soon can we expect more people to buy a quick charger for their home or neighborhood?

Kobayashi:

How to offer such a high-speed charger in the home depends on how much power the customer has available. It’s impossible to limit power in the home to providing such high-speed charging. So, it depends on each household situation. We’d like to adjust as much as possible for a higher demand by customers in some areas where more high power can be available in the future.

Q3. Will next-generation EVs, some of which will be larger than EVs today, change the charger?

Kobayashi:

No, not at all. Because all the developing EVs have the CHAdeMO charger interface. That means that our EV-related components have the CHAdeMO interface and, I believe that with the DC quick-charging the power is developed on the infrastructure side, from the AC grid to high quality DC. And it will be applied to the battery of the vehicle. I think that it’s the most lean and efficient way for quick charging.

Q4. How might an increase in solar- and wind-power generation help to expand infrastructure?

Kobayashi:

I believe so, because DC charging itself needs much power. How to lower the peak load is very important. In that sense, solar or wind power is very effective to gather such high power in a short time. I believe a combination of natural power generation and our DC quick charger is the best combination.

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