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It could soon be a lot easier to charge an electric car — here’s why

Electric car charging stations near me
(Image credit: Electrify America)

While cars like the Tesla Model 3 and the Ford Mustang Mach-E are growing in popularity, there are still significant challenges in getting the charging infrastructure up to speed. Luckily, a consortium of tech giants has been formed to tackle this problem head-on. 

Britain’s Data Communications Company is working with Toshiba, Pelion, and Vestel to make sweeping changes to the U.K.’s EV charging infrastructure. If the pilot project is a success, it will provide the user experience of DCC’s smart meter network and lead to a more secure energy grid, more environmentally friendly charging and less consumer range anxiety.

Given governmental pressures, more and more automakers are offering electric vehicles. In fact, many of them are going to all-EV lineups in the coming years. That increasing number of battery-powered vehicles draws more attention to the patchwork of different charging networks out there. Our sister site Techradar reports that Britain’s Data Communications Company (DCC), Toshiba, Pelion, Vestel and EV charging platform has.to.be are working on a possible solution that will aim to inspire consumer confidence in EVs, make the charging experience more uniform and fortify it against cyber-attacks.

As the company that operates and maintains Britain’s national network of more than 12 million smart meters, DCC’s involvement could not only help make EV chargers smarter and more standardized, but provide consumers a more seamless user experience that reduces range anxiety. In turn, that has the potential to make EVs more approachable to those who have their reservations about them.

In addition, DCC and its partners are aiming to make the charging process more secure by incorporating end-to-end encryption, which would protect EV drivers’ user data and help guard the energy grid that the charging infrastructure runs on against cyber-attacks. According to Techradar, with the information provided by the smart chargers, network operators could better maximize the use of renewable energy sources.

At this point, the pilot is in its earliest stages. DCC and its partners will try out various improvements on a Vestel charge point installed at DCC’s testing facility in Manchester, England. It’s all in the hopes of showing how existing tech can be affordably modified and connected to a national charging network.