OCPI - Introduction29 February 2016
The Netherlands Knowledge Platform for Charging Infrastructure - NKL
Open Charge Point Interface - OCPI
- Project theme: Interoperability
- Status: Current
- Initiators: ELaadNL, EV-Box, GreenFlux, Last Mile Solutions and The New Motion
- Other participants: Next Charge,Freshmile, Plugsurfing, BeCharged, Charge-partner, Hubject, eClearing.net and Siemens.
- Objective: Improving the exchange of information between service providers and charge point operators. Ensuring better information for EV drivers about the status (availability and location) of the charge points and insight into the associated costs prior to, during and after charging. Access to charge points is improved by means of developing and offering independent interface communication software between the charge point and the charge vendor – this is called Open Charge Point Interface, or OCPI for short. OCPI can have an enormous impact on the speed at which publically available charging infrastructure develops. Through its broad objective and independent position, the Netherlands Knowledge Platform for Charging Infrastructure plays a stimulating and crucial role in this.
- Intended result: A nationally and internationally supported independent interface that supports affordability and availability of charging infrastructure. This means lower costs, simplified access, more choice and correct information about charge point location, status and fees.
Extra reasons for OCPI
In the NKL project Paying Smarter | Various Apps – 1 Interface, it was determined both at home and abroad that there was a need for a single, uniform interface for access for mobile apps and websites with which you can pay immediately at the charge point. The conclusion was that OCPI is the most suitable and desirable interface to develop further.
OCPI is a solution to ensure:
- A good standard for roaming (bilaterally and otherwise).
- Uniform access to charging infrastructure via mobile devices.
- Good real-time information about charge points (location, availability and the cost of charging).
- The possibility for real-time billing.
What’s the solution?
For the electric mobility market, Open Charge Point Interface is the key to a more straightforward and accessible charging system based on objective, accurate information. With OCPI, the EV driver gains access to real-time, correct information about charge points and the associated costs. It provides more insight into pricing and payment options. OCPI connects charge point operators and service providers with one another, which in turn allows EV drivers to charge their vehicles in more locations. This fact is recognized by all NKL stakeholders, and though the desire for a knowledge platform has exited for a considerable amount of time, OCPI was never fully realized until now.
OCPI serves both a functional and a societal goal. It is in the interests of all those involved to have an independent, high-quality interface. In order to achieve this, independent direction and support are essential. Through its neutral, overarching position, the NKL can effectively carry out this task. The challenge is to explain the use and importance of the project in a straightforward manner and offer as many parties as possible the opportunity to get involved.
From its independent position, the NKL can:
1. Ensure technical support and realization of OCPI.
2. Guarantee independent management and further development.
3. Allow for support from foreign countries.
Will OCPI make public charging cheaper?
Until recently, it wasn’t possible for different charge points to have different pricing. Fees were primarily an agreement between the charge point operator and the service provider. With OCPI, charging is made cheaper because charge point owners can set their own price, and increased competition will lead to cheaper charging.
What’s the effect on the position of the Netherlands abroad?
In other countries, OCPI is viewed by many as the ideal means for roaming and for accessing charging infrastructure via mobile charge-and-pay apps. There is a great deal of international interest in this kind of interface. With OCPI, access to charging infrastructure is no longer limited to just one country, and it is now only subject to bilateral agreements to allow for charging throughout Europe.
With international support for the interface, the EV driver will soon be able to charge with a single app at home and abroad. This will increase the market for the apps and lead to more competition. International interconnection as the EU has requested becomes possible, and with this project, the Netherlands can continue to fulfill its role as the forerunner in linking together charging infrastructure.