CCS liquid-cooled charging cable safety issue causes sudden widespread service shutdowns

Electrify America has just announced it is shutting down the large majority of its charging services due to a safety issue related to the liquid-cooled charging cables it uses for 150+ kW CCS charging.

Update: the issue has been resolved and the liquid-cooled cables have been reactivated.

Update: the article has been corrected to say that a small number of Electrify America sites use liquid-cooled cables of a different design from ITT Cannon and those locations remain available for 150+ kW CCS charging.

The press release issued this afternoon lists charging services that remain open that use conventional cables for 50 kW CHAdeMO and CCS charging as well as a small number of locations that use a different brand of liquid-cooled cables.

Although Electrify America uses multiple charging equipment suppliers, almost all of the 150 kW and 350 kW CCS cables are of a common design called RADOX HPC and are supplied by Huber+Suhner. All of these cables are now shut down and unavailable.

See also: Huber+Suhner issues statement on liquid-cooled charging cable safety issue

The only other known RADOX HPC cables in public use in North America are at individual sites operated by EVgo and Recargo in California.

EVgo has disabled their high-power charging dispensers at their Baker, CA site but the two older 50 kW units remain available.

EVgo recently opened a San Jose site with 100 kW CCS that remains open since it uses conventional cables.

Recargo has disabled the CCS cables at their six dispensers at their Prunedale, CA site but CHAdeMO charging on the conventional cables remains available.

GreenTechMedia quotes Electrify America spokesperson Mike Moran as saying that his company was informed of “one incident at a private test facility in Europe” involving a single Huber+Suhner cable.

That incident is now being investigated to determine if it was a unique singular event or if there is a broader problem.

Update: new information from European charging providers was added below on January 26 at 9:30am Pacific.

Dutch charging provider Fastned wrote a post on their blog saying they have been told that “the safety issue was identified with a cable from an old sample series that has a different design and which were tested against less stringent standards”.

Charging providers were apparently first notified of the issue on Friday, January 25.

The same cables are also used by charging providers in Europe such as Ionity and Fastned and they have now taken them out of service as well.

Ionity says liquid-cooled cables at 20 charging stations have been shutdown. A number of other locations in their network have 150+ kW chargers but are temporarily limited to 200A because they are using conventional cables because liquid-cooled cables from a supplier (possibly Phoenix Contact) are not yet available.

Independently designed liquid-cooled cables and connectors from Phoenix Contact and ITT Cannon do not appear to be widely installed yet although Electrify America has a few sites using ITT Cannon cables that remain open and available for use.

An unrelated safety issue caused many 24 kW CCS chargers to be unavailable for weeks last summer and fall although many of the units have now been repaired.

See also: ChargePoint and IES Synergy work to fix 24 kW chargers with safety issue

Categories: Charging

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