Charging Stations for Electric Cars

L. David Roper,


BEV = Battery-Electric Vehicle. PHEV = Plug-in Hybrid-Electric Vehicle. EV = both

Charging Stations

Many EV drivers can charge their EVs overnight in their driveways or garages. With the advent of >200-miles-range BEVs (e.g., the Chevrolet Bolt EV), apartment dwellers can drive them similar to the way they drive gasoline cars, refueling as needed at local fast-charging stations.

There are three levels of charging stations for non-Tesla EVs and 3 Tesla charging stationsfor electric vehicles:

  1. Level 1: 120 volts AC @ 12 amperes current (1.44 kW charging) (for BEVs & PHEVs)
  2. Level 2: 240 volts AC @ 15 amperes current (3.3 kW charging) (for BEVs & PHEVs)
  3. Level 2: 240 volts AC @ 30 amperes current (6.6 kW charging (for BEVs & PHEVs)
  4. Level 3: 480 volts DC @ 35-125 amperes current (only for BEVs)
    There are two versions of Level-3 charging stations:
    1. CHAdeMO (Charge de Move-Japan & Korea)
    2. SAE CCS (Combined Charging System-U.S. & Europe)

Level-1 and Level-2 use the SAE J1772 plug:

Level-3 CHAdeMO plug: ; Level-3 SAE CCS plug:

Tesla BEVs have adaptors to attached the Tesla to Level-1, Level-2 and Level-3 charging stations.

E.g., the Tesla adaptor to connect to the CHAdeMO plug:

Tesla Charging Stations

There are three kinds of Tesla charging stations:

  1. Tesla Wall Connector AC @ 48 amperes current (10 kW charging)
    Tesla Dual Wall Connector AC @ 96 amperes current (20 kW Charging)
  2. Tesla Upgraded Wall Connector AC @ 72 amperes current (16 kW charging)
  3. Tesla Supercharger: 6 or more DC charging stations for 120 kW or higher charging

Tesla standard plug: . Tesla joins 150-kW CCS.

Charging curves for several Tesla Model S versions:

The same type of curve applies to charging all EVs; i.e., charging starts off fast and slows down to approach the asymptote of fully charged. So, charging to 80% is much faster per kWh than charging to 100%.

Tesla Superchargers by end of 2016:

Tesla Superchargers in SW Virginia: Wytheville VA 6 stations; Lexington VA 6 stations

Times to Charge

Suppose an electric vehicle has a battery that contains 60 kWh of useable energy; then the charging times for the three levels of charging stations are:

  1. Level-1 = ~42 hours
  2. Level-2 (3.3 kW) = ~18 hours
  3. Level-2 (6.6 kW) = ~9 hours
  4. Level-3 (35 A) = ~1.3 hours (to 80% in ~0.5 hours)

A BEV is hardly ever empty; I plan my Nissan LEAF trips to have 20% charge left when I get home or to a charging destination. I use the LEAF's timer to charge it to 100% by 6 AM every morning.

Future BEV Charging

Discussion is underway about 350-kW charging stations for the future!

An EVSE for direct connection to standard 120-volts or 240-volts outlets.

Drivers of the Nissan LEAF can upgrade the 120-volt EVSE cable that comes with the vehicle such that it can also be used with a 240-volts NEMA-L6-20R outlet. Drivers of other electric or plug-in-hybrid vehicles that use the J1772 plug (e.g., Ford Focus EV, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, Chevrolet Volt) can purchase the revised LEAF EVSE for $979 + $20 shipping and then sell the EVSE that came with the vehicle. It costs another $48 to change the LEAF EVSE 240-volts from 12 amperes to 16 amperes.

Charging-stations types

EV Charger Sharing Protocol

Websites for Charging Stations' Locations

Wireless Charging Stations

Prices for Charging EVs

In SW Virginia the following prices for Level-2 charging stations existed in 2016:

In SW Virginia the following places have the Tesla Wall Connector:

In southwest Virginia the following prices for Level-3 charging existed in 2016:

Long Distance Travel by Electric Cars from Blacksburg Virginia

Charging-Stations References