The Open Charge Alliance have issued a press release to announce that they will be re-naming and expanding their mission: welcoming existing and new members to support open standard networks for charging electric vehicles.
Now known as “Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) Forum”, the aim of the organisation is to develop interoperability standards, which in simple terms, is the way that charge points will communicate with a central hub – relaying information such as: boot notification, diagnostics status notification, heartbeat, meter values, start transaction, status notification stop transaction and more.
The standard makes use of Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP): a framework which makes it possible to send messages between components over the internet, which has already been standardised for similar applications, so can be simply rolled-out.
Standardising network communications will make it far easier for network operators and smart grid operators to manage networks, and also make it easier for integrators/aggregators to keep EV drivers updated with live charge point availability and location information, and to manage the billing process in the case of pay-per-use chargers.
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The Open Charge Alliance, a global consortium of public and private electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure leaders with more than 10,000 installations worldwide, today announced its charter and issued a call for new international members.
Initially formed as the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) Forum, the newly named Open Charge Alliance counts ABB, Eaton, ESB, E-laad, Greenlots and others as existing members and maintains the original mission of the OCPP Forum – to further develop OCPP and related interoperability standards. The Alliance has generated broad industry consensus behind OCPP and will build on that to promote and enable open, flexible EV charging networks for the next wave of EV adoption worldwide. Multiple levels of Open Charge Alliance membership are available.
“For the past several years we have promoted the benefits of OCPP in order to make EV networks accessible. In that short amount of time, OCPP has become the accepted protocol in 50 countries and over 10,000 stations,” said Onoph Caron, founding member of the Open Charge Alliance and director of E-laad. “The enduring nature of OCPP—an open protocol with no cost or licensing barriers to adoption—has given it a strong foothold and deep relevance in Europe and other markets.”
The biggest challenge facing the adoption of EVs today is no longer related to “range anxiety,” but rather stems from access limitations to the public charging stations that line our highways, streets and communities. Many of these early stations are accessible only via proprietary, subscription-based networks. Unfortunately, the closed nature of these networks has generated deep frustration for both EV drivers, who expect the same accessibility that they enjoy at the gasoline pump, as well as charge station owners, who as a result of proprietary protocols are locked into a network system that prevents them from making changes as their needs evolve or price points get too high. There is, however, a better way. In many European countries where open standards have been adopted, site owners can mix and match open standards-based charging stations and choose a network provider that meets their business requirements and provides the best charging experience for their EV driver customers.
The Open Charge Alliance will release the next version of OCPP in the coming weeks. OCPP v2.0 features a more efficient, modern transport, while new messages supporting pricing, smart charging, and charging station health and maintenance, including device event notification and statistical reports. OCA is currently developing a process for OCPP v2.0 compliancy and interoperability, in parallel with the last phase of protocol specification.
“If we listen to EV drivers and site hosts in markets like the U.S., which began as closed, proprietary charging networks, we have a clear take away—open and accessible networks are critical for the next wave of EV adoption,” said Brett Hauser, founding member of the Open Charge Alliance and president of Greenlots. “The success of OCPP in Europe and its growing adoption in North America position it as the de facto platform for the next wave of EV adoption.”
Join the Open Charge Alliance
In response to this challenge, members of the Open Charge Alliance are further developing OCPP to provide a powerful, open and interoperable charge station-to-network communication protocol which supports all the functionality needed by today’s advanced charge management systems. The Open Charge Alliance members represent a broad range of interests in the EV sector including government organizations, utilities, charge point vendors and site operators. Founding members of the Open Charge Alliance are the E-laad foundation (Netherlands), Greenlots (North America), and ESB (Ireland). OCA members see the global benefits of open EV standards:
“The Open Charge Alliance is focused on interoperability standards and is promoting what we believe to be the optimal platform for all global EV stakeholders,” said Joost van Abeelen, Product Manager, Connected Services EV Charging, ABB.
“Eaton’s commitment to providing customers flexible, innovative solutions has made it a global leader in electrical systems. This is a commitment we share with the Open Charge Alliance and what motivated us to become a member,” said John Wirtz, Business Unit Manager, Electrical Transportation Infrastructure, Eaton Corporation. “Leveraging the industry’s de facto open standard protocol, our customers are able to mix and match their choice of chargers, while ensuring they have a robust platform to control and manage their sites.”
“Simply put, OCPP has emerged as the best solution for EVSE management. Since 2011, we have relied on OCPP for the high level of interoperability it ensures between European networks and now all DBT-CEV Charging Points are OCPP compliant. Acting as a catalyst for E-mobility development across Europe, OCPP promises to become the de facto global standard with massive adoption by all players,” said Vienney Devienne, Sales Director, DBT.
About Open Charge Alliance
The Open Charge Alliance (OCA) is a global consortium of public and private electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure leaders that have come together with a single goal in mind: to further the adoption of the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP). Designed to ensure interoperability standards that will guide open and flexible EV networks worldwide, OCPP is the accepted protocol of choice in 50 countries and over 10,000 charging stations, providing accessibility, compliance and uniform communications between charging stations and management systems.
View the press release here: Open Charge Alliance to Electric Vehicle Industry: 'We're at a crossroads
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