Hubject & Smartlab join forces for Plug&Charge eRoaming
Hubject and the European platform e-clearing.net, initiated by Smartlab and the foundation ElaadNL, are cooperating with immediate effect to spread the Plug&Charge technology. The aim is to make “seamless charging” available to all Hubject, Smartlab and e-clearing.net partners.
Hubject and Smartlab are united by the business model of creating services and products around electric mobility for energy providers and companies in Germany. Smartlab’s successes include Ladenetz.de, a public charging network with more than 10,000 charging points, and e-clearing.net, the largest eRoaming platform alongside Hubject and its Intercharge network.
Through their cooperation, the players now want to accelerate the introduction of Plug&Charge. This is known to be an automatic authentication and charging authorisation based on the ISO 15118 standard. Plug&Charge is supposed to make RFID cards and mobile apps superfluous by having the vehicle communicate directly with the charging station.
Smartlab wants to offer Plug&Charge to several hundred municipal utilities in Germany as part of the cooperation. Against this background, the municipal utilities will be able to issue secure charging certificates together with Smartlab in the future – so-called sub or Leaf certificates. “For the implementation, we are creating a new special municipal utility and ladebusiness product so that the energy supplier and ladebusiness contract is transferred to the car and the driver can authenticate himself directly,” Smartlab Managing Director Mark Walcher elaborates.
Smartlab Innovationsgesellschaft, based in Aachen, operates the Ladenetz.de network, through which mainly municipal utilities offer their public charging points, as well as the Ladenetz.de Business-Partner network, in which companies offer their own employee or customer charging points as public charging points at certain times in their car parks.
In addition, there is the European initiative e-clearing.net by Smartlab and the ElaadNL foundation, which sees itself as an open B2B platform and enables cross-border interoperability in charging. Connected market partners benefit, among other things, from cross-network access to the entire charging infrastructure. The free protocols OCHP (Open Clearing House Protocol) and OCPI (Open Charge Point Interface Protocol) are used. Since August 2020, the platform’s activities have been coordinated by the newly founded e-clearing.net GmbH.
Hubject, meanwhile, says it has established a global cross-supplier charging network with more than 300,000 connected charging points and more than 960 B2B partners in 52 countries on four continents. Just a few weeks ago, the Berlin-based company renewed its roaming deal with Plugsurfing. Hubject was founded in 2012 and is a joint venture of BMW Group, Bosch, Mercedes-Benz, EnBW, Enel X, Innogy, Siemens and the Volkswagen Group.
“Together with Smartlab and the e-clearing.net platform, we are committed to making Plug&Charge accessible everywhere in Europe, and we believe this partnership will help us take seamless electric vehicle charging to a new level,” expresses Christian Hahn, CEO of Hubject. The Berlin-based company is already involved in several projects to test and implement Plug&Charge – for example in cooperation with Electrify America, with BayWa Mobility Solutions and very recently with Aral.
What Plug&Charge technology still needs to achieve a breakthrough is a large number of Plug&Charge-compatible cars.
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