Glossary of Terms

  • CHAdeMO
    A quick charging method backed by various automakers. The Nissan LEAF and Mitsubishi iMIEV use the TEPCO port and the CHAdeMO protocol.


  • Charger
    A charger converts AC supply power to DC and uses it to charge the vehicle batteries.
    Many modern plug-ins have their own on-board charger. This can be it's own discrete unit, or the electronics can be integrated into the drivetrain or another component. Chargers can also exist off the vehicle, as in the case of DC quick chargers.


  • DC Quick Charger
    An offboard charger that connects directly to a vehicle's high-voltage battery bus. Allows for high power transfer and can charge a battery to 80% or so in minutes instead of hours. Quick charging should be done according to vehicle manufacturers specifications, as this charge method can be damaging to the battery if done too often.


  • Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE)
    Not to be confused with chargers, this term refers to any off-board equipment used to supply charging energy to the vehicle. EVSE can take the form of a cord, a box mounted to a wall, pedestal or pole, and even the different outlets and plugs that make up the circuit.
    This equipment should prevent energizing of the charge plug until it is seated in a vehicle port. It should monitor for safety hazards. It communicates to the vehicle the amount of current that can be provided by the circuit and gets information about area ventilation requirements.


  • J1772
    An SAE standard that covers AC Level 1 and 2 charging and is the standard in the United States. The latest revision was published January 15, 2010. Work is continuing on a DC charging standard.