Development of a Hardware-in-the-Loop Testbed for a Decentralized, Data-Driven Electric Vehicle Charging Control Algorithm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study presents the design of an electric vehicle (EV)-grid integration (EVGI) hardware test-bed to implement smart EV charging algorithms. The proposed test-bed also allows to create different grid events via flexible integration of other power hardware (e.g., controllable loads and battery energy storage systems) and test their impacts on EV charging. The design uses a real-time digital simulator to realize a complex distribution grid model with primary and secondary networks. A grid simulator physically realizes the selected nodes of the simulated grid to power an actual EV, forming a hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) test setup. The EV-grid integration is demonstrated based on the custom hardware and software implementation of the J1772 charging protocol using dSPACE MicroLabBox, operating as a custom EV Supply Equipment (EVSE). The HIL test-bed features a novel testing platform for accurate implementation and analysis of scalable charging algorithms. To this end, a data-driven, decentralized, model-free charging controller based on the Additive Increase and Multiplicative Decrease (AIMD) algorithm is presented and validated on an EV using the HIL test-bed. We tested the proposed algorithm under various case studies, and presented a comparison study with an existing droop-based, decentralized charging solution. The results showed that the EV successfully performed charging commands generated by the EVSE and regulated its charging power to effectively reduce the system loading caused by high EV penetration.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Industry Applications
StatePublished - 2024

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5400-88931


  • AIMD
  • data-driven control
  • decentralized control
  • electric vehicle charging
  • EVs
  • grid integration
  • hardware
  • HIL
  • load modeling
  • monitoring
  • real-time systems
  • smart charging
  • transformers
  • voltage control


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