Typical EV Charging Use Cases for “Remote” Vehicles – Military and Construction Sectors

Joseph Gottlieb, CTO, Tuesday November 9, 2021

The final vehicle class that we will look at is that of what we call “remote” vehicles – those for whom charging infrastructure is a significant distance from the area that these vehicles perform their tasks. Two of the most notable types of vehicles that fall into this grouping are electrified construction vehicles and military vehicles. In one sense, grouping these two types of vehicles together may seem strange, as their tasks are very different. However, both classes tend to have fairly high gross vehicle weights (GVW) for their size, and while some construction sites have some power feeds, many sites (highway construction, new development, etc.) do not. Even the ones that do have power feeds usually only have limited power for lighting, and not even close to enough to charge vehicles. Military vehicles are obviously challenged for power feeds as well – in many cases they would need to return to “rear supply areas” for charging, just as they need to do today for fuel, ammunition, etc. In both cases, power generation equipment (generators and the fuel for them) likely would have to be brought either to the site (in the case of construction equipment) or into the rear supply area (in the case of military vehicles) to drive the charging infrastructure.

The other piece that makes these use cases similar is that most of these vehicles do not travel long distances in a given day. While we all have seen movies showing tanks driving for hours across a battlefield pursuing a “breakout” (a breach in enemy lines), this is not typical, especially in urban combat operations. The more likely scenario is not dissimilar to that of consumer autos – daily drives of 30-60 miles are more the norm than not. Construction equipment generally drives even less per day than that, and more of their energy is utilized running shovels and other “bolt-on” equipment than driving. While the power draw of both vehicles classes per mile (or per hour of operation) is significantly higher than that of even heavy-duty vehicles such as transit buses, the daily charging requirements are generally more in the 100kWh range. Given these power requirements, the ruggedness of the operating sites for both vehicles, and the difficulties of transporting lots of charging infrastructure into these sites, very fast DC chargers (think chargers in the range of 200kWh or more) that can charge multiple vehicles per day become compelling.

And if you are looking for made in the USA high-power DC fast charging systems for those EVs, look to Rhombus Energy Solutions. Rhombus will be at the Government Fleet Expo (GFX) Show in mid-November – reach out to us if you would like to meet with us there. Our market-leading bi-directional EV charging systems (which are designed from the start for the needs of fleet operators) are designed and built in the USA. Rhombus also excel in the design of high-power smart inverters for next-generation renewable energy and energy storage deployments. Our expertise in energy management system (EMS) software is also embedded in our VectorStat EMS controller and software which is embedded in our EV charging systems and smart inverters. We have built over a thousand V2G-capable high-power, high-reliability chargers and bi-directional smart inverters for a variety of different sizes and classes of EVs.

Find out how we can help you by contacting us at news@rhombusenergy.com, or by reading our Vehicle to Grid Solution Brief.