Following a two-year certification process, dcbel has successfully fulfilled all UL requirements for the company’s r16 Home Energy Station to become the first certified residential bidirectional dc electric vehicle (EV) charger in the United States. This universally compatible solution will allow homeowners to power their homes with their EV.
dcbel collaborated with Intertek, a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) program member, to validate the safety of the product across a wide range of conditions and scenarios, completing dozens of tests to meet UL 2231 and 9741 standards.
The dcbel r16 required specialized evaluation across three U.S. laboratories. Along with bidirectional EV charging, dcbel’s product performs solar energy conversion and fully integrates with home battery storage, replacing the equivalent of over $12,000 in equipment.
Shipping of the first batch of Home Energy Stations will begin in territories within California and New York State. Mass production of the dcbel r16 will take place in Richardson, Texas.
What’s the significance?
The certification of this patented dc technology could signal a new era in EV charging by “challenging the cost of Level 2 AC chargers while enabling automakers to rethink current EV charging architecture,” dcbel notes.
The reason is batteries can only be charged and discharged using dc energy. To this point, all EVs contain a heavy onboard ac power converter. As stipulated by the California Energy Commission, “utilities and regulators have not yet worked out how to guarantee safety and stability of the grid if an unknown vehicle connects to a portal and attempts to export power” using this same onboard AC power conversion equipment.
dcbel’s offboard power conversion solution fills this gap. It delivers dc energy directly to the EV battery, improving upon typical Level 2 charging speeds. The dcbel r16 uses one power converter to do the work of as many as six separate home inverters, increasing round-trip efficiency by over 20 percent while reducing equipment typically needed in single function/multi-device residential bidirectional charging approaches.
To synchronize power conversion securely and efficiently across all these energy assets and anticipate a home’s future energy requirements, dcbel Home Energy Stations run an all-in-one operating system called Orchestrate OS. Using proprietary apps, the system automatically plans whether to use, store or sell energy every five minutes.
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