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CHAdeMO – EV Super-Fast Charging

About CHAdeMo Protocols…..

CHAdeMO is a DC charging (6kW to 50kW with 150kW) standard for electric vehicles. It enables seamless communication between the car and the charger. It is developed by CHAdeMO Association, which is also tasked with certification, ensuring compatibility between the car and the charger.

First introduced in 2009 with the Japanese-market Mitsubishi i-Miev, the CHAdeMO standard is capable of recharging the battery packs of cars like the Nissan LEAF and Kia Soul EV from empty to 80 percent full in as little as 30 minutes.  Used on everything from electric motorcycles to full-size electric busses, CHAdeMO is also the world’s most commonly used DC quick charge standard, with what we’d estimate to be more than 100,000 CHAdeMO-equipped vehicles on the road.

It was defined by the CHAdeMO Association – Purpose/focus CHAdeMO Association aims to increase quick-charger installations worldwide and to standardize how to charge the vehicles. – CHAdeMO was formed by The Tokyo Electric Power Company, Nissan, Mitsubishi and Fuji Heavy Industries (the manufacturer of Subaru vehicles). Toyota later joined as its fifth executive member.

CHAdeMO is an abbreviation of “CHArge de MOve”, equivalent to “charge for moving”. The name is a pun for “O cha demo ikaga desuka” in Japanese, translating to English as “How about some tea?”, referring to the time it would take to charge a car.

CHAdeMO is a form of DC Fast Charge, for high-voltage (up to 500 VDC) high-current (125 A) automotive fast charging via a JARI DC fast charge connector. The connector is specified by the JEVS (Japan Electric Vehicle Standard) G105-1993 from the Japan Automobile Research Institute (JARI). The connector includes two large pins for DC power, plus other pins to carry CAN-BUS connections.
Because CHAdeMO ports do not support AC charging, cars must have two charging ports – one for AC Level 2, the other for CHAdeMO.

CHAdeMO follows Principles

SAFETY - CHAdeMO mandates strict guidelines in designing chargers to guarantee electrical safety in any operating conditions.

FUTURE-PROOF - CHAdeMO is Smart Grid-ready through its bi-directional charging capability. It is also compatible with any local or optional functions beyond charging.

EASE OF APPLICATION - The protocol works with CAN communication, onboard communication network for all EVs, making its integration with the rest of the car easy and reliable.

UNIFORMITY - CHAdeMO connector is identical across the globe and is a stand-alone plug that can be with or without an AC connector. It saves costs for EV makers and enables cross-continental EV travels.

DC Fast Charging Level

Before we get into the fast charging standards, let’s do a small review of why this is important and some terminology.

DC Fast Charging is the fastest (highest powered) electric car charging system currently available. The charging station provides a high power DC current, as much as 120 kiloWatts, to the car’s battery pack bypassing any other charging equipment in the car.
  • 6 kiloWatts: 20-25 miles range per hour of charging (typical AC Level 2)
  • 50 kiloWatts: 120ish miles range per hour of charging (CHAdeMO, CCS)
  • 120 kiloWatts: 300ish miles range per hour of charging (Tesla Supercharger)
CHAdeMO ports do not support AC charging.

DC Fast charging standards

There are four or so DC Fast Charging systems currently being used by electric car manufacturers. 

At the current moment the leading car for each type is:

·        CHAdeMO – Nissan Leaf, Mitsubishi and Kia            
·      CS (Combined Charging System) – BMW i3, GM, VW, Audi, Mercedes, Ford, Fiat-Chrysler and Hyundai.
·        Supercharger – Tesla Model S
·        Chinese Charger 

SAE Combo Charging System (CCS)

SAE’s CCS charging protocol was adopted by all North American and European automakers in 2012. The vehicle charge port has a smaller footprint than the CHAdeMO protocol by reusing the same communications wires as those used by the J1772 AC charging port, thus the name “Combined Charging System”.

Among the reasons the J1772 committee developed CCS are
  • Single charging inlet to support slow and fast charging (versus two required for CHAdeMO)
  • Use smart grid protocols to control charging
  • Same connector serves multiple purposes
SAE CCS charge couplers, European version on left, North American version (J1772) on right. The associated AC-only charge couplers are shown above each CCS variant for reference.

China’s electric car fast charging (GB/T 20234)

The charging standard – GB/T 20234 – is, according to this slide deck on EV Infrastructure and Standardization in China similar to the IEC 62196 connector from Germany.  The GBT standard supports both level 2 and level 3 AC, may even support three-phase AC, and supports 250 volt and 400 volt DC.  While the pin layout looks similar to the IEC connector, the functionality is not identical.

One difference is the Chinese GBT connector uses CAN BUS signaling for control, rather than PLC based control protocols.

Tesla Supercharger

Tesla began deploying its own DCFC infrastructure in 2013. Using the same port as for AC charging, the vehicle is required to reroute electricity past the on-board charger in order to charge the battery directly with DC power.Since 2013, Tesla has installed over 400 Supercharger stations worldwide, including 15 in Canada, with an average of about 6 charging stalls per station. These stations support charging rates of up to 135kW.

Charger Cost

The following cost estimates are based on actual project experience, with Powertech having installed numerous Level 1, Level 2 and DCFC stations, and played a supporting role in many more projects.

The costs of EV charging equipment vary greatly depending on charging level. The following table provides approximate ranges for the three most common currently available types of charging equipment:

Charging Level
Equipment Cost (per port)
Factors affecting cost
AC Level 1
Outlet vs EVSE
AC Level 2


Output power, power management and networking capabilities, station manufacturer.
DC Fast Charge


Output power (25kW vs 50kW), station manufacturer, support for multiple standards
Approximate charge station equipment costs

Usage Fees

Many charging stations support the collection of usage fees through the use of network member cards and smart phone applications. These networks typically require a user to sign up for an account with each individual network, although there have been some efforts to establish roaming systems that allow networks to share members and allow universal access to equipment across multiple networks.

Usage fees for charging stations can be based on:

·        Per usage session
·        Energy (kWh)
·        Time (minute or hour)

The most common type of fee structure is based on time. A time-based fee can be effective in incentivizing users to move their vehicle once charging is complete, and can help ensure the most effective utilization of charging equipment.

Usage fees based on a per-kWh energy value can be preferable in terms of ensuring all users pay the same amount for the same service. The speed of charging may depend on a number of variables (vehicle type, state-of-charge of battery, battery temperature, power reduction due to load management) and so a usage fee based on the actual energy delivered may be the most fair.

In selecting a usage fee, it may be desirable to select a fee that recovers the operating costs of the station, while still keeping the cost of charging an EV comfortably below that of fueling a conventional vehicle on a per-km basis. In BC, at $1.40/litre of gasoline, this equivalency works out to about $0.50 per kWh, or about $1.65 per hour if charging at a rate of 3.3kW. A rate of $1 per hour is common at many stations in the province of Quebec.

*** All data are gathered form trusted source/websites.


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