Princeton Power Systems, a leading global designer and manufacturer of technology products and embedded software for energy management, microgrid operations, and electric vehicle charging, and NRG EVgo, the nation’s leading provider of public DC fast charging, have partnered to provide solar powered charging technology for Team Orange County’s (University of California, Irvine; Chapman University; Irvine Valley College; and Saddleback College) entry into the Solar Decathlon. The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon is a biennial event that this year challenges collegiate teams to design, build, and operate solar-powered homes that are cost-effective and energy efficient. The 20 national and international teams will demonstrate their projects from October 8-18, 2015, at the public event at the Great Park in Irvine, CA.
NRG EVgo and Princeton Power Systems together are providing a first-of-its-kind “CA-10” power converter that allows an electric vehicle to charge at a rate of 10kW directly from the home solar array, in addition to also allowing power to flow back to the grid. The CA-10 maximizes the DC power output from the solar array and through a DC-DC converter provides DC fast-charging directly to the electric vehicle. The direct DC-DC conversion reduces losses associated with power conversion by over 50%, maximizing efficiency and reducing charging time. It is currently compatible with vehicles supporting the CHAdeMO charging standard, such as the Nissan LEAF.
The station can also output power to the grid, or the home when the grid is not available. It meets UL and safety requirements to allow ease of permitting and resident peace of mind. NRG EVgo is donating the CA-10 product to the UC Irvine team, while Princeton Power is providing design consulting and on-site support. The CA-10 solar charging station is based on Princeton Power’s DRI-10 4-port hybrid inverter and will be the first solar fast-charger UL listed to both 1741 and 2202 for grid-interaction and car charging respectively.
“Team OC’s entry into the Solar Decathlon is more than just a forward-looking technology demonstration,” said Darren Hammell, Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer at Princeton Power Systems. “By partnering with companies that are leading the deployment of electric vehicles, solar energy, and charging infrastructure, the team is showing what is possible today when industry and academia collaborate.”
“NRG EVgo is a leader in deploying electric vehicle infrastructure across the U.S.,” said Scott Fisher, Director, Alternative Energy at NRG EVgo. “Our collaboration with Princeton Power Systems and Team OC allows us to better understand how next-generation charging stations can benefit our customers.”
NRG EVgo commissioned Princeton Power Systems to develop the innovative CA-10 solar fast-charging technology, and is a sponsor of the UCI team. The precendent setting technology provides a more efficient and fast way to directly charge an electric vehicle from solar energy, as well as the capability to provide power for the home independent of the electric grid.