Jordan A. Davis

The production of electric vehicles is exponentially expanding and will continue to do so for many years to come. Multiple car manufacturers have committed to rolling out several new all-electric car lines. Some have even committed to a fully-electric, gasoline-free lineup in the not too distant future.  

As gas stations started to spring up and roll across the nation in the early twentieth century, EV-charging stations will follow a similar path in the twenty-first century.  

The two major questions related to this rollout are:  

  1. How quickly will the grid adapt to this increased need for more electricity? 
  2. How can you rollout your own EV-charging station strategy in the most profitable way?  

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No matter how you approach your production strategy, EV charging stations are capital intensive on the front-end. However, some key decisions you make about your technical components will determine how profitable your charging station is throughout its life.  

While you may understand that you’ll need to incorporate battery storage into your approach at some point, the benefits of this added investment may not be clear to you.  

In this blog post we are going to cover why energy storage is a smart strategy for your charging station and how you can increase the profitability of each of your locations with such a strategy.   

The grid doesn’t directly support your charging station operation 

DC fast chargers need large amounts of energy to do what they’re designed to do: quickly charge EVs. The faster it charges, the happier your customers are – and the more viable the choice for EVs over traditional gasoline engines becomes.  

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However, the electric grid as it exists today is not built to support these giant surges in electricity that EV-charging stations require.  

When it comes to setting up the power electronics for your charging station, you have two choices:  

  1. Upgrade the transmission lines to your facility (EV-charging location)  
  2. Implement a battery storage strategy to act as a buffer between the transmission lines and your facility  

Upgrading the transmission lines to your facility can be a costly undertaking. It can also take a lot of time, slowing down your time to a fully serviceable EV charging station. Furthermore, your overhead costs (utility company billing you) can be both high and unpredictable.  

The required surges in power will drive up your costs more than normal because of the added stress on the grid. Depending on the power demand on the rest of the grid, these charges can be hard to predict and will vary based on availability. For instance, hot summers will draw a lot of power across the grid, and drive your costs up.   

Creating an energy storage strategy puts batteries between the grid and your chargers, preventing you from having to upgrade the transmission lines around your facility. This allows for your stations to manage the power surges while charging vehicles without pulling on the grid and receiving upcharges to your facility.  

How to capitalize on investing in your energy storage strategy 

While there are costs associated with both upgrading the transmission lines to your facility and creating an energy storage strategy, only one of these options creates additional revenue streams for your operation, amongst many other cost-effective benefits:  

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Building Smarter Power Stations

There are a number of reasons that the right energy storage system creates a more cost-effective, profitable strategy for building your EV-charging stations.  

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Another smart strategy to consider on your journey to building the most productive and efficient EV-charging stations is to centralize all of your chargers to a single rectifier.  

Combined with the right energy storage strategy, a single rectifier will further maximize the scalability as you plan multiple EV-charging locations.  

Some charging facilities will have standalone charging stations for each spot, meaning there’s a rectifier (power modulating brain) at each station. This is an expensive strategy because each spot would carry a high investment.  

With a centralized rectifier, you have one ‘power modulating brain’ that controls all of the charging stations at your facility.  

Leverage Energy Storage As Your Competitive Edge  

To create the most productive strategy for your approach to EV-charging stations, it pays to understand the various paths to get your facilities up and running.  

While any EV-charging station requires a capital investment, one strategic route provides you with additional revenue streams, while the other does not.  

As you evaluate your options, consider a power electronics company that builds your long-term strategy with you to ensure peak profitability from each facility.