New Industry Products

Keysight Debuts Test Solution for EV Charging and For Grid-Edge Applications

March 24, 2021 by Gary Elinoff

SL1200A series handles 1200 volt, 3-phase AC testing at powers ranging from 30 kVA to 630 kVA

The SL1200A Series Scienlab Regenerative 3-Phase AC Emulator is a one-stop solution for electric vehicle (EV) and electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) charging applications as well as for complex grid-edge applications. 


The SL1200A (right) pictured with the SL1040A Charging Discovery System (middle) testing an EV’s onboard charger.  Image courtesy of Keysight
The SL1200A (right) pictured with the SL1040A Charging Discovery System (middle) testing an EV’s onboard charger.  Image courtesy of Keysight

As Keysight sees it, the electric grid is about to get a lot more complicated. It will have to vastly expand in capacity to power what will eventually be tens of millions of electric vehicles. Much of the new capacity will be from renewables aka variable renewable energy (VRE), with capricious availability, so storage will be needed. It is also expected that idle EVs themselves may provide part of that storage, returning the vehicle’s power back to the grid (V2G).

In addition to the formidable, purely technical challenges, fast-changing standards will vary worldwide, complication the tasks of facing EV and EVSE equipment manufactures and those dealing with high voltage ride through (HVRT) issues at the grid’s edge


Insights into the SL1200 Series

The series features two voltage ranges. The 600 VAC range suits EV and EVSE charging test applications and for low voltage inverters.  The 1,200 VAC is aimed at high voltage ride through (HVRT) testing while eliminating the need for a complex test setup. 

The unit eliminates the need for an expensive transformer, and like the SL1040A Charging Discovery System, it is regenerative. This means that it is bidirectional, and returns most of the power it uses for testing to the grid, and itself achieves 85% efficiency.

"Keysight's new SL1200A series extends Keysight's EV and EVSE charging and grid-edge test portfolio," said Thomas Goetzl, vice president and general manager of Keysight's Automotive and Energy Solutions business unit. "Along with the company's SL1040A and SL1047A Scienlab Charging Discovery System, it provides a complete solution that enables our customers to create real-world charging scenarios with confidence in the ability to meet global standards." 


The Challenges Ahead

Distributed energy resources (DERs) in the form of renewables and the battery storage they necessitate are the new players in the emerging 21st century power grid. To reduce losses, voltages are getting higher. When HVRT is taken into account the need is to provide testing even beyond 1000 VAC.

To provide the high voltages needed to test new designs, it is often necessary to connect multiple power supplies in series or use an external transformer. To avoid the this complex, costly situation, the SL1200A three-phase AC emulator sources up to up to 1200 VL-L at up to 130 Amps. 


Members of the SL1200A Series 

  Voltage Current

Maximum Power

SL1201A 346 VL-N or 600 VL- 63 amps 63 amps
SL1202A 346 VL-N or 600 VL- 63 amps 45 KVA
SL1203A 346 VL-N or 600 VL-L 125 amps 90 KVA
SL1212A 692 VL-N or 1200 VL-L 32 amps 45 KVA
SL1213A 692 VL-N or 1200 VL-L 65 amps 90 KVA

With the available SDC option, DC outputs are also available. By paralleling units, up to 630 kVA can be provided.


Regulatory Standards

  • Testing to IEC 61000 standards 
  • Grid compliance standards include UL 1741 SA and IEEE 1547.1