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Supercharger to Chademo Adapter?

Discussion in 'North America' started by Evbwcaer, Oct 29, 2015.

  1. Evbwcaer

    Evbwcaer Member

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    I thought I would put this idea out there and see what people think:

    What if there was a Supercharger to Chademo adapter that any car with a Chademo port could use. It could be an unlimited deal, buy the adapter and it works forever for "free", or pay a fee for each use or KwH.

    I'd really like to hear what a Leaf driver, for example, would think of this. I know if might have limited appeal given the short range of EV's currently and geography of the Supercharger placement, but if/when the Bolt comes to be, it could be a game changer.

    It seems in-line with what Elon generally thinks, but what do you all think?
     
  2. DavidM

    DavidM P2624, Delivered

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    Well, for starters, if it even worked without damaging the car or the supercharger it's stealing. The Tesla supercharger network is currently proprietary to (and for the benefit of) Tesla Model S customers only. That could certainly change in the future if another automaker invested in the supercharger network, and agreed to design cars to meet the supercharger specification. But that hasn't happened, so you could be charged with vandalism, theft, or perhaps both.

    Frankly, since other EVs weren't designed to accept such a high current charge, I believe it would do some serious damage to the car, and maybe even to the supercharger.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Also, all EVs aren't designed to accept a high current DC charge, and all high current DC chargers aren't the same. That's why it's not so easy to replicate what Tesla has going with Long Range EV + Supercharger network + Destination charging network + dual charger options + HPWC charging at home + (14-50) charging, etc. That didn't all come together by accident. Tesla designed the entire environment, and then brought the components into existence. The other automakers are just addressing things piecemeal.
     
  3. Evbwcaer

    Evbwcaer Member

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    It would be a product offered by Tesla, so it would not be theft. The purchaser of the adapter would be the one investing in the network. Chademo, I think is rated to 100kw, regardless the adapter would be smart. Additionally, the cars themselves only accept the charge they can handle, just as a Model S only takes 40kw when near full, even though the SC can give around 130kw.

    I feel that all of your concerns are addressable.
     
  4. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    I don't see why Tesla would want to make another adapter when they have said they are offering the port itself for automakers that want to use the network. Elon/Tesla has also made it clear that whoever signs on would need to have a car to handle the power levels of chargers as they are. It has nothing to do with safety (the chargers can handle lower power levels) but rather optimizing utilization of the chargers, which will be increasingly important as more supercharger capable cars are on the market.
     
  5. Evbwcaer

    Evbwcaer Member

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    One reason that they might want to offer it is because there are about 90,000 Nissan Leafs on the road, I don't know how many are Chademo ready. Say there are 50,000 Nissan Leafs out there that are DC capable, up to 62.5kw, that is a lot of potential customers.

    The better reason might be that auto makers might have a cultural/political issue using the Tesla port, and therefore won't, even if their customers call for it.
     
  6. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    That presumes Tesla has a lack of "customers" for its superchargers, when the worry is the opposite (they might have too much for the network). The main reason for Tesla offering the port is to push for the industry to adopt a superior standard. If politics is enough to stop an automaker from doing that, then it will equally stop them from contributing to the network in a fair way, which would be a deal-breaker in the first place: the second condition Tesla laid out is for such an automaker to invest in the supercharger network proportional to the usage.
     
  7. TexasEV

    TexasEV Active Member

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    There are so many reasons why this is a bad idea there's no point in listing them all.
     
  8. liuping

    liuping Active Member

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    The main reason for now it that there are few, if any, cars that can take a charge as quickly as a Tesla and/or have the range of the Model S, so they will need more and longer charges.

    Supporting cars like that would require many more super chargers than are currently in the system, Which would cost more than any addition fees tot he new users are likely to generate.
     
  9. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Active Member

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    I'll try.

    The vast majority of cost is in the installation of a site.
    Pay-as-you-go (PAYG) requires account management, including validation, which adds cost, time and more points of failure.

    The biggest potential problem for long-distance BEV is contention at on-the-road (OTR) chargers.
    To lower contention at the OTR chargers without large cost you want to
    - minimize the miles driven using the OTR chargers
    - charge as fast as possible

    Compared to long-range BEVs:
    - cannot charge quickly
    - would need to charge more often

    PAYG is a crappy model for charging, because of:
    - front-loaded infrastructural costs
    - capacity requires parking spots and plugs. (Contrast that with cellphones, which have towers, and send small packets of data).

    Using an adapter will make it harder to charge at a high rate.

    So, no, bad idea.
     
  10. Enadler

    Enadler Member

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    I believe the OP's idea is a good one. However, it is ahead of its time. Once competitors start making EV's with range and battery capacities that would make SC use appropriate then I think this idea has tremendous merit.

    If Tesla were to produce this type of adapter it would accomplish 2 things. First, it would add another revenue stream. I would suggest that the contribution to the SC network be built into the price by pricing the adaptor at several thousand dollars. Secondly, I believe as it is adapted by non-Tesla EV's traveling on long trips it would serve as an endorsement and a validation of Tesla's network. It would also help advance Tesla's stated goal of speeding up the adoption of EV's for personal transportation.
     
  11. snort

    snort Member

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    It's only a bad idea today because supercharger stations today are few and far between. By allowing other cars to buy in, there would be enough budget to expand the network faster.

    The commercial model for CHAdeMO tends to cause them to concentrate around big cities. It's a chicken and egg situation: If you're managing an intercity truck stop or whatever, you don't see many Leafs or SoulEVs etc., so you don't see the value in installing a CHAdeMO, so you're not likely to spend the money. You might see a few Teslas though and since Tesla's footing most of the bill, it's an easier decision. But Tesla has a limited budget for the things. they're opening them at a pace fairly consistent with sales of the car.

    If Leaf and Soul etc., owners could buy in, this would add budget for expansion. Tesla would of course sell a lifetime package, just as they do for supercharging. since someone actually buying the adapter is very likely to use it a lot, the price would probably be higher than it is for Teslas--many of which only use supercharging a little.

    CHAdeMOs are designed to a limit of 62.5KW, about half what what superchargers can deliver (most actually do deliver much less than that). But the batteries of most of the cars using them are less than 1/3rd the capacity of Tesla batteries, so they won't really be spending any more time there than Teslas are.

    I think it will make the overall experience better for Teslas too. Today, the typical spacing of Superchargers is 100-150 miles. If you're going on a long trip, you basically can't skip any, except in the rare areas where they're already dense. Imagine if they were 60 or 70 miles apart: you could charge fully, then skip two, or charge to the taper, and skip one, depending on the state of your bladder and appetite.

    more vehicles and more chargers means the typical use of each supercharger site will be more constant. If ICE's see them in use, they are less likely to block them.

    As long as there are sufficient superchargers for the demand, I think it's all to the good.

    --Snortybartfast
     
  12. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    Tesla does want other companies to buy in, but by adopting their port (so that the standard can naturally grow), and also by the automaker directly investing money into the network before the car sale even happens, not only collecting fees from the end user during a car sale.

    I've seen similar arguments used to justify lower power standards (whether DC or AC), but it does not work. What matters is the kW and mph speed. Having a smaller battery still does not address the fact the station is being underutilized because it is delivering less utility per unit of time. The issue is not directly the absolute waiting time. A much less expensive CHAdeMO charger can provide that kind of power, whereas a supercharger is a very expensive way of providing it.

    Making smaller gaps will significantly increase the cost of infrastructure. Right now Tesla is paying the infrastructure cost from the advertising budget. Tesla also expects automakers that adopt the supercharger network to invest their fair share in the network. So minimizing unnecessary or sub-optimal stations are important.
     
  13. DavidM

    DavidM P2624, Delivered

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    Oh. I understand your proposal now. But a "fair" price for that adapter (without the other automaker making a huge up front investment in the supercharger network that already exists), would double the price of the car. So you're talking about a $30,000 adapter on a $35,000 Bolt. And that's assuming that the Bolt would be designed to meet the supercharger specifications. Remember the Model S 40? Well, part of the reason that vehicle was not popular was that you couldn't upgrade it to include supercharger access. It had a 160 mile battery (similar to the upcoming Bolt).

    Bottom line. I think you are grossly undervaluing the existing supercharger network. With every passing week, more supercharger stations open, and the supercharger network becomes even more valuable. Which increases the "fair" price for another automaker to buy their way in. Even Tesla's destination charging network is pretty darn valuable today. With charging up to 80A, (more than double the charging rate of virtually all Level 2 Public Charging Stations), and all of them free, with no network to join, it's a valuable system, and it's growing fast.
     
  14. Evbwcaer

    Evbwcaer Member

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    Lots of ideas going around.

    -60s, 70s, 85's and Model 3 all "under utilize" Superchargers. Making a point that because a Soul EV can't charge at the rate of a 90 and therefore it is a bad idea, is pretty short sighted.

    -A Leaf or Soul, for example, takes less time to charge than an S.

    -This concept, depending on how it is structured, could alleviate traffic at Superchargers. So just making the point that it makes more traffic and is therefore bad, is only a guess. If implemented correctly it could allow for expansion equal too or greater than the additional demand while promoting EV adoption.

    -Elon is more concerned with implementing sustainable transport than protecting Tesla's connector jack format. If you could buy a 200 mile Bolt for 30k, and a Supercharger to Chademo (assuming the Bolt will have a Chademo), for 5k, you would have a nice proposition from Elon's perspective.

    Finally, it could be really nice for sales. If you go to Audi to buy a Q7 E-tron Chademo and they explain the charging infrastructure but then have to kind of quietly mumble that you can go to Tesla and buy a $5,000 adapter that doubles the functionality of the vehicle.....well then that is going to really push people toward Tesla if/when competing EV's come out. Obviously it would be cool if other makers adopt the Tesla standard, but I don't think it is likely in the near future.
     
  15. Oba

    Oba Member

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    1) None of the cars you mentioned will have CHAdeMO port; that is absolutely guaranteed.

    2) CHAdeMO is not limited to 62.5 kW (125a * 500v); it is actually is limited to 100 kW (200a * 500v).

    3) The typical charge speed with any modern CHAdeMO station and any modern electric vehicle is:

    Between 300 volt and 400 batteries at 120 amp, with 200 amp units coming from ABB and others next year.

    That equals today:

    36kW = 300v * 120a
    48kW = 400v * 120a

    Future:

    60kW = 300v * 200a
    80kW = 400v * 200a

    There are no 500 V cars nor are there any 500 V cars planned for the near future. CHAdeMO can operate between 50 and 500 V. Yes, even without any 500 V cars, those future 200 amp charging stations will be advertised as "100 kW".

    - - - Updated - - -

    The decision by Tesla to not include Supercharger access to the 40 kWh Model S was purely a marketing decision, and not a technical one.

    - - - Updated - - -


    While I'm quite confident that eventually at least one other automaker will sign up with the Tesla Supercharger network,clearly the current so-called "fair price" isn't yet fair for any other party!!!
     
  16. Saghost

    Saghost Active Member

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    From a technical standpoint I think it's perfectly doable - basically the same sort of computer protocol translation that Tesla's CHAdeMO adapter does, in reverse.

    I don't know if the adapter would be restricted to a certain voltage range by the details of the SpC electronics, but I think almost all modern EVs fit near the two different Model S voltage ranges anyhow. The adapter would presumably be limited to CHAdeMO's 50 kW maximum.

    Obviously if someone other than Tesla did it they would be stealing.

    I'm not entirely sure if it makes sense to Tesla to sell such a device or not. The Supercharger network is a huge competitive advantage for Tesla, and a key enabler of a long range EV. Keeping it exclusive will help them sell cars, and they only have to provide enough capacity for he cars they sell, and don't have to worry about slower cars hogging charging stalls.

    On the other hand, they've had excess capacity on much of the network all along so far, and selling access would both make more money for Tesla with minimal extra investment and also encourage EV adoption as a whole, which is a stated corporate goal.

    I tend to think a pay as you go method makes more sense with the adaptor, but I could see them using either approach if they chose to do it.
    Walter
     
  17. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    The 60kWh/70kWh actually support 100+kW, it is some older 85kWh packs ("A" version) that are stuck at 90kW.

    But to the point, there is huge gap between 100+kW (or even 90kW) and 50kW. To support the 50kW EVs as you suggest would require Tesla to build twice as many stations for the same trip. The cars would also be charging twice as long for the same trip (which drops down station capacity by half). That is the main issue in under-utilization (which does not affect the Tesla examples given, they work perfectly fine on the same network as the faster ones).

    That is only fine if the automakers are willing pay twice as much to support 50kW EVs, meaning for example if such an adapter would cost $5000 for a 100kW EV, it would cost $10000 for a 50kW EV. I see no good reason why the automaker doesn't just make the EV capable of 100kW instead (which is what Tesla has been saying would be required to be done to use the network).
     
  18. shokunin

    shokunin P85 & S40

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    Why would a Leaf need supercharger access where there seems to be a growing Chademo network?

    An adapter without some sort of annual payment or usage restrictions, becomes a lifetime supercharger access device. You can lease a new leaf every 3 years and just buy one adapter to use over and over. While Tesla is pricing in supercharger access in every car they sell.
     
  19. Evbwcaer

    Evbwcaer Member

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    My point about the smaller capacity Teslas was in response to those saying anything that less than fully utilizes a Supercharger's capacity is kind of not worthy...for lack of a better term.

    The main issue could be under-utilization, but another conceivable scenario is that:

    -These Leafs and Souls are paying to use currently unused capacity. Win

    -The Leafs and Souls don't do the same trips, they do trips with one SC stop, mainly. Win

    -The money they pay allows for denser SC placement, SCs that Teslas can use. If this was the case Tesla would win in terms of $$$, Tesla drivers would win in terms of SC density, and we would all win in terms of EV adoption.

    From what I have read the Leaf can take 62.5kw, not 50kw.

    Somebody said an Audi EV would not have a Chademo, what DC port would it have? Just curious.
     
  20. Oba

    Oba Member

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    #20 Oba, Oct 31, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2015
    If you read something else, all I can say is it's wrong. The maximum battery voltage of a LEAF is 395 volts, therefore the maximum charge rate is:

    125a * 395v = 49.3kW today

    200a * 395v = 79.0kW tomorrow with future "100kW" chargers


    The maximum charge rate for CHAdeMO is, however (again), no manufacturer world wide builds a 500 volt battery:

    125a * 500v = 62.5kW

    200a * 500v = 100kW


    For comparison, Tesla Supercharger:

    70D (354v max) = 310v * 370a = 114kW max charge rate

    85/90 (403v max) = 325v * 370a = 120kW max charge rate
    **********

    All German automobile manufacturers will use CCS, not CHAdeMO.
     

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