Leading transport and energy companies will develop business models to support rapid growth of vehicle-to-grid technology
Moixa is joining leading energy and transport companies to study how to reward drivers who use their electric car batteries to support the UK’s power grid, it announced today.
The consortium will develop driver-centred business models to support a rapid roll out of vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technologies, allowing millions of electric car batteries to become a vital part of the UK energy system.
Chris Wright, Moixa Chief Technology Officer, said: “Electric vehicles will play a key role in decarbonising road transport but put new demands on our power network. V2G could bring major savings, by managing this demand and reducing the need for costly upgrades. We can lower the cost of owning electric cars and support growth of this sector by sharing these savings fairly, so that drivers benefit from the use of their batteries to support the grid.”
Mark Dale, Innovation and Low Carbon Networks Engineer, Western Power Distribution, said: “V2G could present a real opportunity to provide a benefit to electric vehicle drivers, electricity customers and networks if managed in the correct way. The uptake of electric vehicles will present significant challenges, and smart charging along with V2G solutions could be critical in integrating them into the electricity network with minimum disruption.”
The consortium includes National Grid, Western Power Distribution and car manufacturer Nissan’s European Technical Centre, as a part of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance research activities. Element Energy will coordinate the project and lead the modelling, supported by Moixa, Cenex and the Energy Systems Catapult.
If electric vehicles are left plugged into smart, two-way charging points when not in use, their batteries can feed power into the network at times of peak demand. Just ten new Nissan LEAFs can store as much energy as a thousand homes typically consume in an hour. Smart chargers can also control when cars recharge to avoid stressing the network and to store surplus power when demand is low. This will allow the grid to operate more efficiently, support high levels of renewables and rely less on fossil fuel power stations.
The study V2GB – Vehicle to Grid Britain is one of 21 projects sharing nearly £30 million of government funding to make the UK a world leader in low-carbon vehicles. While other projects carry out large-scale trials, the consortium will establish the best ways to incentivise a rapid roll-out of V2G technology by sharing revenue from supporting the grid with key players – drivers of electric vehicles, owners of smart chargers, owners of charging sites such as car parks, and aggregators of battery capacity.
National Grid and Western Power Distribution will advise on the full range of ways electric vehicles can support the energy system and the revenue this can generate. Nissan’s European Technical Centre will provide real-life data on driver behaviour, drawing on experience of delivering more than 500,000 electric vehicles worldwide.
Moixa and consultancy Cenex will contribute expertise from the UK’s first domestic V2G trial, which demonstrated that using power from electric vehicle batteries to help balance supply and demand could earn around £60 a month per vehicle
Moixa has pioneered technology that can manage flows of energy to and from electric car batteries and aggregate them to function as a virtual power plant supporting the energy network. Its GridShare platform uses machine learning to profile drivers’ patterns of behaviour so that cars always have sufficient power for their needs. It is developing software to give drivers the option to control the level of charge manually.
Chris Wright said: “Drivers are happy to earn extra money supporting the grid so long as they can use their car normally whenever they want. A freelancer who travels long distance at the drop of a hat is very different from a staffer who drives five miles to the office every day. Machine learning allows you to maximise utility around these patterns.”
Analysis by Element Energy shows that without V2G, electric vehicles could account for 30% of new car sales by 2030, with 4.7 million on the road. However, if V2G revenues are available to drivers and reduce the total cost of ownership of an EV by £1000, this could see electric vehicles account for 40% of new car sales by 2030, with 6.5 million on the road. It would generate extra sales of 250,000 electric cars and vans worth £5 billion each year. The study will help to assess how robust these estimates are by identifying drivers of V2G revenues as well as necessary changes of the market and policy environment.
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NOTES TO EDITORS
V2GB – Vehicle to Grid Britain
The project is part of the Vehicle-to-Grid competition, funded by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) and the department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), in partnership with Innovate UK.
OLEV and BEIS announced that 21 projects (8 feasibility studies, 5 collaborative research and development projects, and 8 real-world V2G trial projects) were to receive funding of almost £30 million to develop the business proposition and core technology around V2G, and demonstrate those with large scale trials. The projects involve more than 50 industrial partners and research organisations from both the energy and automotive sector, marking the largest and most diverse activities on V2G in the world, and trialling more than 2,700 vehicles across UK.
The V2G projects represent a significant step towards the transition to a low carbon transportation and a smart energy system. Allowing EVs to return energy to the power grid when parked and plugged for charging will increase grid resilience, allow for better exploitation of renewable sources and lower the cost of ownership for EV owners, leading to new business opportunities and clear advantages for EV users and energy consumers.
Moixa has developed GridShare as a platform which can manage any battery, including electric vehicles and home storage devices, optimising its performance for owners and aggregating its capacity to support the electricity network. Last month it announced a strategic partnership with Itochu, one of Japan’s largest trading houses, to launch GridShare in Japan.
Moixa Technology (www.moixa.com) is the UK’s leading home battery company. Along with smart energy sharing, we help everyone from individual homeowners, to councils and large property companies to manage and cut their electricity bills. We’re the partner of choice for leading installers, housing associations and utility companies.
Moixa has an unrivalled track record in the UK home battery market, with over 10 years of research and development, strong international patents and proven technology. It has installed Moixa Smart batteries in 1000 homes nationwide with a combined capacity of over 2MWh and nine million hours of use. It has worked with councils and housing associations, energy utilities and network operators to deliver more than £6 million of projects. It has received over £5 million in grants and pilot awards in addition to equity investments.
The Moixa Smart Battery is a compact (50cm x 30cm x 20cm), cost-effective, wall-mounted unit that fits easily into homes and is easily installed. It is an all-in-one Lithium Ion Phosphate battery system, requiring no additional equipment, and AC-coupled, so it can take advantage of smart tariffs by importing electricity from the grid when it is cheap, and provide options for back-up power. It has a 20-year lifespan and comes with an extendable ten-year guarantee.
Moixa smart grid patents are cited by hundreds of international companies and include US2010076615, US9379545, US8849471, GB2476213, US20140159584, GB2510804, GB2539317, AU2013353807.