Sensor specialist Sensata Technologies (NYSE: ST) has announced that its new power disconnect solution, which is designed to enable faster and safer DC fast charging, has been chosen by several charging infrastructure OEMs.
Sensata’s solution combines contactors and GigaFuses from its Gigavac product in a contactor module that’s designed to simplify installation and to provide more effective system protection compared to traditional contactor and thermal fuse pairings.
EV charging systems are quickly migrating from 400 V to 1,000 V, and from 50 kW to up to 350 kW. While higher voltage and power levels reduce charging times, they increase safety risks and design challenges.
High-voltage contactors provide safe circuit continuity, and fuses are required in tandem for circuit protection in the event of a hazardous short-circuit event. Increased voltage and current levels not only require contactors with higher breaking capabilities, but also make the contactor and fuse pairings more technically challenging.
Sensata says its GigaFuse offers several advantages compared to a conventional DC thermal fuse, including the ability to:
- open a circuit within 3 mS
- open a circuit closer to normal operating conditions without nuisance tripping
- pair more easily with the contactor because of its unique electro-mechanical triggering mechanism
- reduce thermal resistance, typically 0.15 mohm
- eliminate thermal aging, due to low heat generation.
“Our recent wins with major charging infrastructure OEMs demonstrate the additional value we provide to our customers as we move from being a component supplier to a leading electrification solutions provider,” said Nick Moelders, Sensata’s VP of Electrification. “Working engineer-to-engineer with the most innovative companies allows us to learn and adapt to the needs of the rapidly transforming clean energy market.”