EV Charging

This project involved the design and development of a complete indicator and charging status system to be incorporated in our customer's Electric Vehicle (EV) charging station.
Fully programmable
Open circuit
Complete system of the status indicator, control board and courtesy lights
Production representative prototypes in less than 2 months

The Challenge

Our customer had some specific demands to be met as part of our complete solution.
Custom & combined charge status indicator, courtesy lighting system with control electronics taking commands over TCP/IP.
The status indicator – needs to provide 360° indication, be visible in direct sunlight, have a homogeneous light source, be IP65 sealed and operate in a varied temperature range.
The indicator should be visible by drivers whilst in cars as well as by pedestrians. Intensity should be adjustable such that it does not create a hazard at night. Indication states should be Blue = available, Blue flashing = connecting to car, Green = charging, Red = fault state.
The courtesy lights – should provide illumination of the charge connector and surrounding area. Must be IP65 or greater. Must be low profile to enable surface mount installation.
Control interface – custom control electronics designed to receive TCP/IP commands then control the charge status indicators independently.

The Solution 

Charge status indicator – custom injection moulded housing, colour matched to the customers' charger. Custom optical system featuring a primary reflector and secondary lenticular control surface. The custom reflector collects and directs the light at the required vertical angles, the lenticular optic then spreads the light on the horizontal plane to remove visible point sources and create a homogeneous output.
The indicator is IP65 sealed and features a PTFE membrane to prevent condensation and damage to sealing due to pressure and temperature variation.
Courtesy Light – Custom, CNC stainless steel luminaires designed to be flush fit and screw into M18 threaded hole. Featuring a custom optic to project illumination forward of the charger.
IP66, IK10 with open circuit protection.
Control Electronics – custom electronic design that featured 2 independently controlled boost converters. Accepts TCP/IP input commands. Fully programmable microcontroller to allow flexibility in control of the status indicator and courtesy lighting.

The Result

We used innovative rapid prototyping techniques to deliver initial fully-functional prototype systems for trials & demonstration in ~2 months. This allowed our customer to demonstrate and market their EV charging solution under extreme time pressure. Complete system manufacturing is optimised for low-hundreds of units and beyond.

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