The SAE task force that is currently working on a standard for a conductive connector for plug-in vehicles could finalize that work as soon as this fall. The proposed plug standard is currently going through certification testing at Underwriters Labs and that work is scheduled to be completed by the end of May. If the testing is successfully completed, the standard will go to balloting which could result in the standard being adoped within a few months.
General Motors Gery Kissel, who is the sponsor of the J1772 task force is presenting at the SAE World Congress this week and he spoke with AutoblogGreen about the plug standard. Among the companies that are participating or supporting the standard are GM, Chrysler, Ford, Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Tesla. The plug was also submitted to the International Electrotechnical Commission in Europe for approval. The proposed standard connector was developed initially by supplier Yazaki and adopted by the task force in January 2008.

The connector is designed for single phase electrical systems with up to 240 V and 70 A such as those used in North American and Japan. The round 43 mm diameter connector has five pins and will support communication over power lines, to identify the vehicle and control charging. The connector is designed to withstand up to 10,000 connection/disconnection cycles and exposure to all kinds of elements. The supporting manufacturers have committed to using the new plug including GM for the Volt and its derivatives. Tesla has even committed to changing over to the standard plug and retrofitting existing vehicles.

This plug is unrelated to the recently announced European plug standard. That plug is designed for 400 V three phase applications.

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