Presentation of UFCEV

UFCEV - Ultra-Fast Charging of Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicles can play a significant role for individual mobility under specific mission conditions for the benefit of specific user groups. Even though substantial progress can be expected in the area of embarked energy storage technologies, existing vehicles already feature ranges suitable to fulfill  well-defined missions thereby contributing to the reduction of CO2 emissions and other pollutions.
One of the important problems facing electric vehicles is the possibility of ultra-fast charging, both as seen from the battery itself as well as from the local supply system. In this context, large load variations as seen from the local power system, at multiple levels, must be carefully assessed with special attention to feasible load changes at the coupling points.
Ultra-fast charging of electric vehicles will require the deployment of several storage technologies, such as high-capacity batteries and suitable mixtures of high-power and high-energy density subsystems. In addition, an appropriate power flow management will imply specific and dedicated power electronics conversion and control. Since ultra-fast charging systems will unavoidably lead to complex and hybrid equipments, detailed system reliability analysis is essential, as well as a better understanding of the limitations emanating from existing and future grid systems and apparatus.

In order to address those needs, the Energy center along with its partners decided to start the Ultra-Fast Charging of Electronic Vehicles project. The project puts together experts coming from several Swiss institutions as well as market leading firms in related fields.


The current project's main expected outcomes are :


  • Impact of a UFCEV system on local distribution system design: update of existing system and green-field design, with specific attention to high short-duration power peaks.
  • Detailed assessment of various energy storage technologies, both stationary and embarked, including their applicability and interface issues.
  • Modeling and optimization of power electronic converters with the aim of achieving outstanding high efficiency of the converter systems for the fast charging station.
  • Design and implementation of the required control electronics, with specific attention to energy efficiency.
  • Design and implementation of a high-cycle efficient and high-discharge rate energy storage system for the load-leveling at the ultra-fast charging station.
  • Demonstration project for validating the fast- charging capability and the grid integration, in collaboration with industrial partners. A stand alone, readily transportable demonstrator unit designed for family cars with a typical battery capacity of 20 to 30 kWh and for a standard household electric plug (400V/16A) will be built including charger and grid interface power electronics.
  • Large-scale charging stations will be considered conceptually, in particular as far as their impact and integration in local low or medium electric supply systems. Shift load scenarios involving these stations as storage means will be proposed and thoroughly evaluated. The possibility to perform load shifting from day to night will be investigated.
  • Assessment as to system reliability and availability, as to local grid integration, as well as to investment and operational costs.


It is therefore clearly stated that the project is not bound to in-laboratory research but is rather aiming to build an actual demonstrator to validate the performed researches.