The EV overload: Page 2 of 3

July 18, 2019 //By Steve Hughes
electric vehicle
The rise of the electric vehicle, or EV, is inevitable. Over the past decade, many car manufacturers, including BMW, Audi and of course Tesla, have blown the lid off this new technology. As EV battery capacity and motor efficiency continue to increase, the ability to charge the batteries within a reasonable timeframe is of the utmost importance.

Keeping the grid stable

A dead battery in an EV leaves the user uniquely stranded when compared to internal combustion vehicles, so the ability to charge an EV from any AC supply is important. Batteries use DC, meaning somewhere between the mains and the battery a conversion needs to be made. This slow-charge ability requires the EV to be able to rectify AC on board.

Ideally, each EV would be identical and would charge the same. In reality, however, minute flaws and manufacturing variables in the rectifying components create harmonics in the mains AC signal. Multiplied by hundreds of thousands of EVs, all introducing their own perturbations, and the frequency profile of the grid quickly becomes a noisy mess. This noise represents an obvious waste of electrical energy. Conductors carrying high frequency AC also exhibit far higher resistance than those carrying the same power at lower frequencies, further reducing efficiency. But more importantly, a noisy AC signal causes interference in high frequency applications, which can negatively impact performance.


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