Just as dinosaur drivers need to choose among regular, premium and diesel, EV drivers have several charging options, and novices (including some of our colleagues in the mainstream media) still find the different choices confusing.
Here in the US, we have Level 1 (120 volts), Level 2 (240 volts), and three different DC fast charging standards. In Europe and Asia, there are other standards, and the same ones are known by different names. Furthermore, the same car can charge at different rates depending on the charging station, but those rates are not displayed at most public chargers.
Matt Teske, a marketer and long-time EV owner from Portland, has devised a set of uniform symbols to denote the different charging standards and speeds.
Teske’s system, called Chargeway (via Green Car Reports), uses color-coded circles for charging standards, with a single number inside to indicate the charging speed – the higher the number, the higher the charging power available. For example, J-1772 Level 1 is indicated by a blue 1, J-1772 Level 2 by a blue 2, and CHAdeMO 50 kW DC fast-charging by a green 3 symbol.
The symbols could be affixed inside an EV’s charge-port door, and on public charging stations. They could also be included on highway signs, and incorporated into existing smartphone apps, so drivers would know at a glance whether a particular station could charge their car.
Teske showed the Chargeway system at the recent EV Roadmap 10 conference in Portland, and got rave reviews. “We need this concept to be seen and [backed] as soon as possible by all industry stakeholders: car and charging manufacturers, regulators and environmental organizations,” said Shad Balch from Chevrolet.
“The Chargeway description of the various types and speeds of EV charging makes it super-easy and simple for consumers to understand,” said Katherine Stainken, Policy Director for Plug In America.
Source: Green Car Reports