German energy technology giant Siemens has launched a new electric vehicle charger that it says will be the first in Australia able to integrate with building management systems to help businesses and apartment managers realise carbon reduction goals.
Many current-day electric car charging solutions are as simple as a connection from car to grid, with little else in between to tell either building managers or grid operators who is charging when, and with how much power.
But as electric vehicles become more common, the need for building managers to be able to interact with AC car chargers will increase as they strive to juggle energy demands of businesses and residents.
Better insight into facility performance, the ability to offer better services, improved resource management and regulation of energy usage were all identified as top considerations for best-in-class smart buildings in a 2018 report published by Aberdeen Group on behalf of Siemens.
Paving the way for lowering emissions and improving air quality as electric vehicle numbers increase, the VersiCharge AC charger’s building management systems puts a suite of reporting and control functions in the hands of the building manager, enabling the ability to adjust power demands, measure energy usage and provide network connectivity to EV service providers.
“Modularity, scalability, and a focus on open standards are key requirements for EV Charging infrastructure,” said John DeBoer, head of Siemens eMobility and Future Grid Business Unit in a statement. “Our next-generation product is designed to help both the commercial and residential sectors realize their carbon reduction goals with a solution that can effectively grow with them over time.
“We’ve developed the VersiCharge AC series so that cities, businesses and individuals can make the most of what EVs have to offer now and in the years to come.”
The new VersiCharge AC electric car charger is offered as either a wall-mount or pedestal, with up to 11.5kW charge rate and numerous configurations to suit multi-residential, workplace and utility situations.
Working across Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP)-certified networks, Siemen’s new charger with building management solutions is compatible with all common electric vehicles and can be used in either fleet or private operations.
Accessed via a smartphone app, or via a “smart interface”, the chargers can be set up in a parent-child configurations via a Wi-Fi or ethernet setup and integrated with building management systems such as Siemens Desigo dynamic load management system.
Update: A previous version of this article stated the new charger has been launched in Australia. Siemens have confirmed this is not yet the case and we will keep this article updated on when this will happen when more information comes to hand.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.