Vietnamese Engineer Builds 30-Minute Fast-Charging Station For Electric Cars

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A 30-minute charging station that can provide 80% of the battery is built by MSc Dung and his associates and is integrated at some gas stations in Da Nang.

Electric cars have the advantages of low fuel costs and limited environmental impact in terms of noise and emissions. World and Vietnamese firms have begun planning to test and sell this type of vehicle. 

Realizing the potential, since 2017, MSc Tran Dung and his colleagues at the Center for Production of Electronic Measuring Equipments in the Central Region have built a charging station for electric cars.

Level 3 fast-charging stations are currently installed at some gas stations in Da Nang. 

Master Tran Dung, Director of the Center, head of the research team said that the station is equipped with two fast-charging nozzles, studied according to international standards for level 3 charging stations, so it can meet all kinds of electric cars in the world.

Specifically, the station carries a DC voltage of 300-750 V with a maximum intensity of 60 A and a capacity of 60 kW. Especially, the conversion efficiency from the grid to DC power of the station is up to 93%, while the energy conversion efficiency of traditional petrol cars is only about 17-21%.

The charging station has a built-in display panel showing the total amount of charged batteries and charging time. Users only need to select to start the car charging process. When finished, the station automatically cuts off the power and has an audible notification.

Depending on the amount of electricity remaining in the vehicle battery, the charging station can supply 80% of the battery in 30 minutes. To reduce the grid load, MSc Dung and his colleagues installed the roof of the charging station with solar cells, helping to supplement the energy source in case there is not enough stored electricity.

The roof of the station is a solar panel that helps to supplement the charging source in case there is not enough stored electricity. 

The station ensures safety features for vehicles and users such as circuit breakers in case of overload, lightning protection, phase voltage loss warning, and explosion sensor. In addition, each station is connected to remote monitoring management software that helps update user parameters to quickly detect errors and unusual problems when charging.

Car chargers can pay electronically or in cash, based on the number of kilowatts of electricity charged. However, Mr. Dung said, currently, the management agency does not have regulations on the price of kW of electric charge for electric cars. “However, the price may be slightly higher than the residential electricity price,” he said.

Products are made entirely in Vietnam from processing such as charging station cabinets, software development, equipment assembly, so the price is only about 2/3 compared to imported goods. 

Completed after 3 years, the research team has installed 2 integrated level 3 charging stations in the petrol station in Da Nang city, operating from July 2020 to the present.

From the beginning of the actual test, the team continued to improve the features of the station (such as consulting customers, saving charging history), and finding ways to increase conversion efficiency to reduce charging time. 

MSc Dung wishes to be able to expand the system of fast-charging stations for electric cars in Vietnam in 2022, taking advantage of clean and renewable energy sources into practice.

Normally, charging stations for electric vehicles have three levels: level 1 (voltage 120 V, a charge of more than 6 km, usually used for electric and gasoline-powered vehicles), level 2 (voltage 208-240 V, an hour of charging can go more than 26 km). Level 3 charging station is a fast charging mode, with a voltage of 600-800V, allowing the car to charge up to 160 km in just 30 minutes. 

Currently, a number of firms such as Vinfast and Porsche have installed this type of station in some major cities in the country.

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