Fully Charged Presents Leviamp Ceiling Charging Station From Easycharge

JUN 4 2017 BY MARK KANE 19

Fully Charged recently visited Germany, where EasyCharge has introduced an innovative approach to charging in garages; via ceiling-mounted, folding LEVIAMP charging stations.

EasyCharge LEVIAMP

It offers all the capability of fixed Type 2 charging stations (3.7 kW, 11 kW and 22 kW), but should be easier to install – as replacement to lights.  A novel idea!

Additional features are cameras, which will enable users to check their car via smartphones, as well as a projector to show name of customer that reserved spot.

Overall, a really interesting development amid the sea of normalized level 2 AC charging stations we are used to seeing.

“Fully Charged travels to Berlin to meet the inspiring Artur Sychov and see the launch of a truly ingenious solution to installing electric car charge points in multi story car parking.
The Leviamp from Easycharge, simple.”

EasyCharge LEVIAMP and Tesla concept art

EasyCharge LEVIAMP

Categories: Charging

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19 Comments on "Fully Charged Presents Leviamp Ceiling Charging Station From Easycharge"

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Not bad, but I wish more people would be working on wireless charging. I would love to come home, pull into my garage, and my car would be getting topped off…then the only time I would need to even think about charging would be the rare road trip.

Agree. But what’s wrong with Plugless? https://www.pluglesspower.com/

Plugless is great BUT it adds $400 a car for the unit in the car and it is on the ground with high powered electric which in public spaces creates electrical code issues.

The Leviamp being overhead makes it much easier and it can serve two cars.

The real issue in the garages is the power. 40Amps to every parking spot (even every two spots) is hugely expensive. A 200 car garage would need to add 30,000/15,000 amp service plus wiring out.

Leviamp device with Evercharger software would help a bit. Evercharger takes the power and distributes it to the cars as needed so the total power needed is much less BUT the wiring is the same as each spot has to be able to take 40A service to charge quickly if possible in order to distribute the power so everyone gets a charge as needed

What $400??? Yes the cable is on the ground and so is every normal EVSE, what’s the problem here? You can emmbed the cable in the ground in public spaces and that is if the system is universal. The Plugless system is not universal. Do you honestly think that, in a few years from now, once EV’s are adopted, we are still going to be plugging our cars? Obviously not. Can you just imagine the kind of damage a few kids with knives could do in a parking mall full of wired chargers? There is a lot of money in those cables. The future can only be wireless charging with emmbeded everything and in car guidance, out of sight, out of mind. And eventually, the batteries will be energy dense enough that you wont need to recharge on the go, except for long travel.

“You can emmbed the cable in the ground in public spaces and that is if the system is universal.”

There’s no “underground” in a concrete parking garage and now power. You’d have to install a 10.000A service for 200 EV chargers at 40A. You could run the overhead conduit which is what makes the Leviamp viable. Putting the Plugless down in a garage is hard as you have to run conduit on the ground and I don’t know if that would make code. You might have to dig a chase in the concrete. The $400 plus is the unit that goes into the care for Plugless. And for that to work, everyone has to have Plugless which is only available to a few cars now. I think Plugless is the way to go at home but in garages hard to do. Outdoor like SuperCharger station’s OK.

Leviamps outdoor overhead does help with multicar garages.

Yeah, it’s such a drag to spend 5 seconds plugging your charging point in, isn’t it!

There is always losses.
When you go from DC to AC you loose. When you go from DC back to AC you make a loss.
Wireless is a loss and so on.
So more bang for your bucks by converting less. DC to DC.

Do chargers in Europe not have their own cables to plug into the car? so you have to carry the cable with you?

Correct. (In regards to public AC charging at 22kW or less)

They have a type 2 socket. You bring your own cable to suit your car.

Advantages are:
– Works fine with multiple plug types on cars. I.e. nissan leaf’s have the us & japan style single phase J1772 socket, whereas tesla, Renault Zoe etc have the 3 phase “type 2” socket.
– EVSE’s are cheaper (cable is a big cost), hence promotes more being installed.
– Tider when not charging
– Reduced risk of vandalism and theft (cables are removed when cars are not charging.

We are in the process of adopting the same public charging standard in New Zealand.

Fast (Chademo/CCS DC & 44kw AC charging) require tethered cords on charging stations.

Tethered Evse’s are available for home use.

Another advantage: if your car needs a longer cord, you carry a longer cord. No need to put the longest cable any car could need (due to dumb socket positioning) on every EVSE just in case. There is an enormous disadvantage, which is that you have no way of knowing the cord is rated properly for the charge rate. This is why high-current EVSEs have attached cords, because it’s quite possible people will carry low-current cords (they’re cheaper and more compact) and you’ll run it past its rating if you use it for fast charging. What happens if you buy a car with a Mennekes on it and buy a 4kW cord for it, then later get a new car with a Mennekes on it but that charge at 10kW and then you just use your old cord because you already have it? That’s a bad scene. It basically means that car companies have to never re-use a connector on their vehicles across multiple max charge rates. And we know that isn’t going to happen. They could instead use an authentication system in the cord but we know customers would hate that too. It would restrict cord choice and drive… Read more »

Smart chargers like the Leviamp can sense the resistance of the cord and reduce the current flow to suit.

That doesn’t make any sense. The Leviamp has to way to detect the resistance of the wires. It could detect the impedance through the car as a circuit but there is spec for what the impedance should be so no way to tell if it is out of spec.

The car can sense the voltage drop (heuristically) since it is on the far end of the cables. But the EVSE can’t as it doesn’t experience it. So the EVSE can’t tell what the resistance is in the wire.

Now if there was a separate no-current (high impedance) return wire then the EVSE could sense this. But there isn’t.

“which is that you have no way of knowing the cord is rated properly for the charge rate”

Incorrect. It is very safe. The cord has a resistor (designating the cords rating) on one of the pilot lines. The car will draw the lesser of the rating of the cord, the rating or the EVSE, and the capability of the car.

The reason high current (44kW AC & 50kW DC) have tethered cords is because the cords are very bulky, heavy and costly for each EV to provide their own. The reason you can’t do BYO cord at 44kW AC is that the standard required temperature monitoring in the cord at this charge rate, but there is no way to pass this information from a BYO cord to the charge station in the standard.

44kW AC looks like it is going to die as a supported standard soon anyway. The only car that supports it is the Renault Zoe (only certain trim levels i.e. R90). Renault has stated that they are going to go with 22kW AC charging, and CCS DC fast charging for the next version of that car.

The arm is sort of flimsy.
Other than that it seems pretty well thought out.

That’s dumb. A huge hassle for no real value.

Looks clever, but far too vulnerable to damage and expensive to use in a public setting. Mounting a common untethered EVSE on the back wall (above bonnet height) would result in a cheaper, more durable solution.

Way too unstable. The arm will break after very few times of use.
The concept is great but needs refinement.

Well ok, this is a ‘commercial refinement’ of what people have been doing for years when the easiest location of the installation of their wall box just happens to end up on exactly the WRONG side of the car, and people have made spring loaded cables to pull down from the ceiling to charge their cars. Only takes a very long cord attached to the wallbox. Here, with this product, the limitation is 32 amps (even at 22kw), and it is fortuitous that in Europe you are expected to bring your own cord, something which is not the case in general on this side of the pond. Now, as far as simply multiplying the amount of current drawn per car times the number of cars = the size of the parking lot’s electric service times 125%, it must be noted that commercial distribution of electricity is never the same as it is in houses – therefore, ‘10,000 amperes’ or whatever, will never be required. In very large charging installations, there WILL be a large incentive to only provide the amount of charging power actually needed for the typical ‘charging patron’; in many cases this will be either level 1 or… Read more »