Electric vehicles: The role and importance of standards in an emerging market
After nearly a century with the internal combustion engine dominating the personal transportation sector, it now appears that the electric vehicle is on the verge of experiencing rapid growth in both developed and developing vehicle markets. The broad-scale adoption of the electric vehicle could bring significant changes for society in terms of not only the technologies we use for personal transportation, but also moving our economies away from petroleum and lessoning the environmental footprint of transportation. This article investigates the role of standards, related training and certification for the electric vehicle. It is argued that the potential for the electric vehicle will be stunted without adequate attention being paid to standards, not only in terms of the speed of its uptake and smoothness of this transition, but also in terms of maintaining compatibility between jurisdictions, safety of the public, and helping to ensure environmental sustainability. We highlight a number of areas where new or adaptations of current standards, training and certification may be needed, notably in terms of batteries and charging infrastructures, electricity distribution and accounting for the environmental characteristics of this electricity, and different aspects of vehicle-to-grid and smart grid technologies.
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