How OCPP 1.6 Helps with Load Balancing and Smart Charging
How OCPP 1.6 Helps with Load Balancing and Smart Charging

Currently, most modern EV chargers adhere to OCPP 1.6 standards. Furthermore, an increasing number of station manufacturers provide hardware compatible with OCPP 2.0.1, foreseeing future requirements in the e-mobility industry and reducing financial losses related to stranded assets.

At present, the global consortium supporting open standards includes over 220 members from 43 nations across five continents. Within just six years, OCPP has emerged as the industry standard for electric vehicles.

The Open Charge Point Protocol facilitates communication and data transfers between charging points designed for electric vehicles and central control systems.

With this in mind, in this blog, we will explore OCPP and its role in facilitating load balancing and smart charging for EV drivers.

Why Do You Need an EV Charging Software That Supports OCPP? 

When it comes to EV charging software that supports the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP), it brings significant benefits for managing, operating, and expanding EV charging infrastructure effectively.

The introduction of smart charging in OCPP 1.6 changed perceptions surrounding EV charging. This innovation enabled the transmission of Charging Profiles to charging stations, forming the basis of the modern EV charging system.

The Central System takes control of both the charging power or current of an individual EV and the energy usage across an entire charger/charge point network.

Smart Charging is mainly known for these use cases:

  • Load Balancing
  • Central Smart Charging
  • Local Smart Charging

Load Balancing

OCPP actively manages internal load balancing within the charge point by adjusting the charging schedule for each connection. Each charger is set up with a specific limit, usually the maximum current of the connection, ensuring optimal utilization of the power distributor agreement without risking a power outage.

The Charging Point Operator (CPO) can set a minimum charging rate, improving energy distribution among connections. This prevents inefficient charging by clients, swiftly guiding them to alternative services using appropriate balancing techniques.

Time Taken to Charge an EV

Central Smart Charging

Central smart charging allows the Central System to manage the charging schedule for each transaction. By regulating individual Chargers, these schedules help comply with energy consumption limits set by any external program across the entire network.

Local Smart Charging

On the other hand, Local Smart Charging involves the Local Controller, rather than the Central System, governing charger charging restrictions. This smart charging scenario limits the energy usage of a group of charge points, such as in small networks like a parking garage.

Another instance is where the Local Controller receives power availability information from a Distribution System Operator (DSO) or a local smart grid node.

Charging Location Usage Frequency

Other Functionalities of OCPP 1.6

OCPP 1.6, a part of the OCPP 1.x series, introduces several crucial functionalities that streamline interactions within the electric vehicle charging ecosystem, ensuring a smooth and standardized experience.

Here are more reasons why relying on OCPP 1.6 for EV charging management is essential. Understanding these functions is vital for EV drivers, EV station managers, and EV charging business owners alike.

Chargers per 100,000 Households

Basic Charging Control

OCPP 1.6 provides fundamental features to start and stop charging sessions remotely. Charging station operators can effectively manage the charging process by initiating and stopping charging sessions, monitoring session status, and tracking energy usage.

Transaction Management

Efficient management of charging transactions is facilitated by OCPP 1.6. It enables tracking and logging essential information such as start and end times, energy usage, and cost calculations per charging session, serving billing purposes, reporting, and performance analysis.

Status and Notification Updates

Charging stations use OCPP 1.6 to relay operational status to the central management system, ensuring real-time updates on station availability and readiness. It also provides alerts for faults, errors, or critical events.

Firmware Management

OCPP 1.6 incorporates features for firmware management, enabling remote software updates for charging stations, ensuring stations receive performance enhancements, bug fixes, and security updates without physical intervention.

Data Collection

Authentication and Authorization

Secure communication between charging stations and central systems is ensured through authentication and authorization mechanisms provided by OCPP 1.6, allowing only authorized entities to access and control stations, enhancing overall ecosystem security.

Remote Diagnostics

OCPP 1.6 supports remote diagnostics, enabling the central system to gather diagnostic information from charging stations, streamlining troubleshooting, minimizing downtime, and enhancing maintenance efficiency.

Support for Multiple Interfaces

OCPP 1.6 supports flexible communication interfaces like Ethernet, Wi-Fi, and cellular networks, enabling deployment in diverse locations and configurations while maintaining consistent communication with central systems.

How Does Smart EV Charging Work? 

Smart EV charging stations represent a significant advancement in the electric vehicle ecosystem, combining technology, data-driven insights, and sustainable energy practices

These stations use an intelligent back-end solution that manages charging devices and optimizes their usage based on real-time data. This approach provides significant benefits for users and the broader energy grid.

Data-Powered Management

Smart EV charging relies on data-driven management. Charging stations are connected to the cloud, exchanging information continuously with a central management system. This connection gives station operators and energy providers real-time insights into charging events, station availability, and energy consumption.

Dynamic Energy Management

Smart EV charging stations adapt to various signals, adjusting their operations for better energy use. Signals include changes in renewable energy production, local electricity demand, the number of vehicles charging, or nearby energy use patterns. Considering these signals helps stations use energy more efficiently.

Load Balancing and Demand-Response

Smart EV charging stations can balance the electrical load among devices, preventing grid overloads during high demand. They also participate in demand-response programs, adjusting charging rates according to signals from the grid operator. This helps maintain grid stability and prevent blackouts.

Integration with Renewable Energy

Smart EV charging plays a pivotal role in advancing the adoption of renewable energy sources. By synchronizing with renewable energy production patterns, charging stations can prioritize charging during times of abundant renewable energy supply. 

This aligns EV charging with green energy production, reducing reliance on fossil fuels and supporting a more sustainable energy ecosystem.

User-Friendly Experience

Smart charging stations improve the user experience. They offer real-time availability status, remote start/stop options, and scheduling features. EV drivers can easily check station availability using mobile apps or online platforms, ensuring convenient and efficient charging.

Bad User Experience Statistics

Grid Optimization and Stability

With the expanding electric vehicle market, a surge in charging stations might strain the electrical grid during peak demand. Smart EV charging mitigates this by intelligently distributing the charging load, reducing the risk of grid instability, and avoiding expensive infrastructure upgrades.

Benefits of Smart EV Charging with OCPP 1.6

Intelligent charging is extremely advantageous, if not critical, for the energy industry. Only the best EV charging management software like 6senseEV will use this charging feature. 

Smart charging benefits electric vehicle drivers, charging station owners, and charging network operators.

Let’s explore how smart electric vehicle charging solutions can benefit EV drivers, companies, and EV charging networks:

Remote Monitoring

Access a smart management system to remotely monitor and control charging events, review usage data, and report issues. All charging stations are linked to the platform, allowing grouped management and adjustments to station settings, including pricing bundles.

Easy Payment Process

A simplified billing system charges consumers through their Virta account or credit cards. Automatic invoicing based on your pricing choice streamlines the process, sending income to you monthly without your intervention.

6senseEV Dashboard

Control Power Consumption

Receive regulated charging events to avoid exceeding the local grid’s capacity and overspending on power bills. Grouping stations helps save costs by preventing the need for electrical connection expansion. If a station group exceeds the specified maximum charging power, all stations’ power within the group is automatically reduced.

Observe Real-Time Statistics

Businesses utilizing EV charging management software gain the advantage of real-time reports and analytics. This functionality empowers them to monitor charging station usage, energy consumption, and revenue generation instantaneously. 

Through intuitive dashboards, they can assess station availability, track peak usage hours, and identify patterns in demand.

Make more profit for your EV charging business after reading this EV Charging Software Buyer’s Guide!

Grid Stabilization

Manage smart charging based on various signals; for instance, schedule charging during periods of lowest power consumption. This opens new business prospects by controlling chargers according to energy production and consumption signals.

Offering energy management options to EV drivers for voluntary participation in demand response requires incentives and information for consumers.

Manage Multiple Charging Stations

As a network operator, design device groupings, pricing models, and user bundles. Easily experiment with different pricing and manage station groups using the provided management tools.

Stay Up-to-Date on Matters

Monitoring your business becomes easier: all charging station activities are accessible in the management system, presented in simple and comprehensive overviews. Track major metrics, review data, and access individual station details for a clear understanding.

Who can you market your EV charging business to? Read this blog to find out!

Find Available Charging Stations

A smartphone app simplifies the process of finding and reserving accessible charging points. This mobile application provides details on charging power, pricing, and real-time availability of charging stations.

Charge Safer

Smart charging devices offer a safer and more relaxed solution compared to standard domestic outlets. These devices automatically verify the connection between your car and the charging device before initiating charging. All charging activities are monitored and manageable remotely.

Charge Faster

Smart charging devices utilize the most available energy automatically. Most of these gadgets can charge at a maximum capability of 22 kW, while fast charging stations can reach up to 150 kW of power.

Save Money and the Environment

Automatically adjusting the timing of your charging event helps you save money and supports the environment by leveraging the lowest-cost electricity. Optimizing charging during periods of low energy usage not only cuts costs but also contributes to balancing the grid.

Optimize EV Charging

Closing Remarks

Understanding how load balancing and smart charging function within the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP 1.6) framework is essential in navigating the evolving landscape of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure.

Load balancing optimizes energy distribution across multiple charging points and enhances the efficiency of the entire charging network.

By dynamically adjusting charging rates based on real-time grid conditions and user preferences, load balancing ensures a stable energy supply, reduces the risk of grid overloads, and contributes to a more sustainable energy future.

6senseEV is OCPP 1.6 compliant and can provide your EV charging network with a remote monitoring option, power consumption control, real-time analytics generation, grid stabilization, and safe charging. 

Contact us now to get the best deal!

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