In European power supply networks, alternating current (AC) is mainly used for energy transmission. To charge electric vehicles, the alternating current from the grid must be converted into direct current (DC). DC chargers, superchargers (SUC) and high power chargers (HPC) convert the electricity before it’s transferred into the car’s battery.
The advantage: Converting electricity in the charging station enables charging capacities of currently up to 350 kW. The specific charging power always depends on the vehicle model, the state of charge (SoC), the power supply system and environmental conditions. Fast charging is particularly relevant for long-haul journeys when waiting times are to be minimised.
DC charging does have some disadvantages, however.
- The costs for DC charging stations are extremely high, both in terms of production as well as installation and operation, which is why electricity at DC charging stations is usually more expensive than AC charging.
- Frequent fast charging can also damage the battery of the e-car in the long run and shorten its service life.
- Fast charging is not beneficial to the grid, as high loads are needed within a short period of time.