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Cost and considerations when installing DC fast charger in business locations?

Discussion in 'North America' started by tdiggity, Oct 8, 2013.

  1. tdiggity

    tdiggity Member

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    Just curious -

    Nissan's DC fast charger starts at $15k.

    What's the installation costs like for one of these? In the simplest case where there is no trenching, outside wall mounted close to the electrical box install.


    • Are DC chargers harder/more costly to install?
    • Can one easily tell if their electrical panel is compatible/sufficient for one?
     
  2. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    1. Not really. It's the same as any other piece of equipment. You'll need to provide conduit to it, a concrete mounting pad, appropriate protection (bollards), then it's just a matter of the right size wire/cable back to your electrical panel.

    2. The specs listed for Nissan's 44 kW charger (AeroVironment) require 3-ph 480VAC, input power 54A @ 3ph. Depending on what type of business you have, 480VAC 3-ph may or may not be available at this moment to you. If your business has heavy-duty equipment - manufacturing/production, restaurant, motors, etc. - you likely already have access. If your business is in a medium-to-large office building - you likely already have access. However, even if you don't have 480VAC (for example, you have 208Y/120V or just 240/120V), you should be able to obtain it from the PoCo (PG&E?) without an issue. It will require an additional transformer bank and meter.
     
  3. TonyWilliams

    TonyWilliams Active Member

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    #3 TonyWilliams, Oct 15, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2013
    Issues beyond purely a 44kW electrical appliance installation are:

    1) Handicap accessibility - this can vary widely throughout the USA

    2) Finding a host who will give up a parking spot! Yes, it's a bigger deal than you might imagine.

    3) Demand charges - this is the fee charged by the electric utility to draw over (typically) 20kW of power. This fee alone in California can be THOUSANDS of dollars per month per installation. Who is going to pay for that? The California Public Utilities Commission controls this.

    Sure, there are plenty of other sundry issues, however if you can get past those three, you might have a chance at a "free" DC charger. Your "outside wall box" is unlikely to have the required power.

    The good news is that many DC CHAdeMO chargers can work on 208v-240v in single or three phase. The Nissan branded, Sumitomo built, AeroVironment marketed unit will only use 480v three phase, but it's not required to use that unit to be part of the Nissan $10k/$15k program. Any CHAdeMO will work.
     
  4. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    Tony, since you've been studying these - which do you think is the best 1ph @ 240V or 3 ph @ 208Y/120V charger? I was poking through the chademo.com options but the only UL-listed ones with links seem to want 400-480VAC 3 ph. From part numbers, I can deduce that the Blink option may work (e.g., GP-208K1) but I can't find online docs for it.
     
  5. RandyS

    RandyS Fan of Elon

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    At the recent Plugin 2013 conference, Nissan's presentation in one of the panel sessions put the average price of installing one of their DC Fast Charging stations at a dealer at $49K (hardware + installation). They only take 480v 3-phase power, so a transformer may be needed if the site has 208v power. Tony's points about the host, demand charges, etc. are all valid...

    These stations are not cheap to install and operate....
     
  6. TonyWilliams

    TonyWilliams Active Member

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    #6 TonyWilliams, Oct 15, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2013
    We (EVoasis) actually operate a CHAdeMO DC charger in San Juan Capistrano, California, which is one of the busiest in the country. It is just a short distance south of the soon-to-be-built Tesla Supercharger in the same town.

    It operates on 208v directly off the nearby transformer that powers a large hotel, so the installation was about as cheap as it gets, however the transformer was still upgraded.

    So, having said all that, it's no surprise that I recommend the company that supplied our first charger and sponsored the BC2BC-2013 http://www.AllElectricVehicleRaly.org, in addition to flying one charger in from New Jersey to Blaine, Washington for the start of the rally. That company is Fuji Electric.

    I almost made a huge mistake when I forgot that these were 208v/3phase, and not 480v. During the start of the rally, I actually threw the generator switch over to 480v, and somebody wiser than me caught the mistake before we fired it up (literally).

    AeroVironment also sponsored BC2BC-2013, but as we already know, they no longer produce a CHAdeMO, and merely market the Nissan branded unit that requires 480v. Certainly, I would recommend that unit with the caveat that it is 480v only (or a new transformer). Also, please note that that unit has limitations on altitude (for cooling).

    The Eaton unit is capable of 208v or 480v, but I do not believe these to be dependable.

    Andromeda Power sponsored me last year, and they have a unit that will take any combination of power that you can dream up; DC, AC, single phase, three phase, up to 900 volts. I have used it several times, but they currently do not offer a weatherproof unit.

    There are others, but I don't have experience with them.
     
  7. miimura

    miimura Active Member

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    PG&E has several rates that could apply to DCFC service. If you have separately metered service for a single 44kW unit, then A-1 rate would apply. See pge.com/tariffs. There are no demand charges on A-1 but you will be kicked off if your peak demand exceeds 75kW for three consecutive months or your total billable energy exceeds 150MWh in 12 months. It would be easy to stay on A-1 with a single CHAdeMO unit and several J1772 stations. Rates are TOU, but in comparison to residential, it's inconsequential. For Summer, Off-Peak is $0.201, Part-Peak is $0.224 and Peak is $0.232/kWh. So, Peak is only 15.4% more expensive than Off-Peak.

    PG&E Residential EV rates are Summer Off-Peak $0.0984, Part-Peak $0.2081, Peak $0.3812 and Winter maxes out at $0.274/kWh. Peak is 287% more expensive than Off-Peak and Peak is 83% more than Part-Peak.
     
  8. TonyWilliams

    TonyWilliams Active Member

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    At 22 cents, just the electricity for a fill up with an 85kWh car (which would require almost 100kWh) is $22 just for energy. How many hosts/owners are going to charge $5-$15 for a charge when it takes up to $22 for just energy?

    There are many variations within California on the demand fee structure. For instance, I don't believe that Palo Alto charges any demand fee at all. Here's how many utilities there are, all with their own myriad of tariffs and fees:

    electric_service_areas.gif
     
  9. miimura

    miimura Active Member

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    At 44kW, it's basically $10/hr for the energy. Round up 20% to $0.20/minute and I think drivers and hosts would be happy.
     
  10. TonyWilliams

    TonyWilliams Active Member

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    You're confusing kW (rate of charge) and kWh (quantity of energy).
     
  11. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

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    I don't believe he is. At 44kW by definition you are going to use 44kWh in an hour, which he is saying is $10 of electricity for every hour of charging.
     
  12. miimura

    miimura Active Member

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    Exactly. You're not going to get 44kWh into the battery in an hour because of losses, but for the station operator it is that simple.
     
  13. TonyWilliams

    TonyWilliams Active Member

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    I mistook the reply as $10 to fill up the Model S, and missed the $10/hr part.

    Nonetheless, still a bad proposition as a business model !!!
     

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