Adding spark to your park: How electric vehicles can give back to the grid

Peter O'Driscoll of RingGo Research

Auto manufacturers are constantly working to improve the electric vehicle (EV) production line. In fact, says Peter O’ Driscoll, managing director, RingGo, new lithium-ion batteries from StoreDot, who provider in fast charging technology, could hail recharging times that make fuelling your EV as easy as topping up petrol at the pump.

These five-minute charging times for EVs are another tick in the ‘pros’ column, but more work needs to be done to encourage uptake to replace petrol and diesel. Even though registration figures from SMMT show a 66.7% increase in EV registrations year-on-year for 2020, these figures are still dwarfed by petrol registrations.

The SMMT is now calling for boosts to charging infrastructure and investment in battery gigafactories to reinvigorate industry and meet ambitious electrification challenges.

Aside from this, there’s a benefit to EVs that is not often discussed, one which could be set to benefit drivers and energy management vehicle-to-grid (V2G) charging. This is another feather in the cap of electric vehicles and will likely help motivate drivers to go green by switching to electric.

Watts the deal with giving back to the grid?

The concept works by enabling energy stored within electric vehicles to be drawn back to the national electric network, or the grid. Normally, when there’s a surplus of electricity in the grid, EVs siphon off charge for their batteries.

However, during times of peak demand on the grid or when there’s a shortage of electricity, EVs can discharge their juice back to the grid for a profit.

A parked electric vehicle can be left plugged into the grid. If the driver has opted to be part of a V2G charging program, then software can calculate when that car should tactically receive and supply energy.

Typically, these vehicles charge at night when energy demand is low and send power back to the grid during the day.

Together in electric dreams

The system is a compelling reason for drivers to make the switch to an EV, as it empowers drivers to contribute to a wider, global cause. OVO Energy, the clean energy provider, recently initiated a V2G trial program which connects cars across UK residences to form a virtual power plant. From the trial, the energy provider projected that, with 5.5 million 2G capable EVs in 2030, the fleet could provide 8.6 TWh of balancing over the year, meeting 77% of the grid’s needs.

Despite these environmental benefits, RingGo’s research found that almost a third (32%) of drivers who are open to EVs require a greater availability of charging points to make the switch, whilst one in five (20%) of those currently not considering an EV would consider buying one if their range were greater. Additional hesitancies to make the leap highlight the need for greater knowledge about the capabilities and benefits of electric vehicles.

Essentially, changing ingrained behaviours will be difficult in the lead up to 2030. But now is the time for the government and local authorities to highlight how each individual can contribute to the future of the planet by simply making the switch.

How V2G can motivate positive change

V2G charging is a gift for both drivers and the environment. Financially speaking, drivers have the potential to save a couple of hundreds of pounds per year through the V2G program. Estimates on money saved vary with energy supplier E.ON Energy approximates that customers could save £308 (€354.63)per annum, whereas OVO Energy suggests that customers could save as much as £800 (€921.11) per year.

In addition, when implemented at scale, the system offers exciting opportunities to promote sustainable energy supply. For instance, one of the major aspects that counts against wind power is that its capability fluctuates with the weather. However, EVs could help stabilise this energy source. EVs could store surplus energy produced during windy periods and then supply it back when there’s a lull reducing wind power intermittency.

What’s in store for EVs and V2G

The benefits of V2G charging can really be seen when deployed at scale; large fleets of EVs sending power back to the grid in times of need could provide great balancing capabilities.

What we need to see now is a normalisation of electric vehicles and charging. Change comes from the top the onus is on councils, Government, sustainable companies and industry innovators to boost long-term investment plans and help encourage adoption and positive green attitudes.

When it comes to V2G, new bonus packages from energy suppliers for those engaging in such charging schemes would be a great help.

National promotion strategies co-ordinated by public and private organisational efforts for EVs, ahead of the 2030 ban on the sale of petrol and diesel, will help create a cleaner, healthier and more liveable towns and cities for all in the future.

The author is Peter O’ Driscoll, managing director, RingGo

Comment on this article below or via Twitter: @IoTNow_OR @jcIoTnow

RECENT ARTICLES

Garmin Enduro 2 ultraperformance smartwatch adds mapping, touchscreen and its longest-ever battery life

Posted on: August 11, 2022

Olathe, United States. 09 August, 2022 – Garmin International, Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd., announced the Enduro-2 ultraperformance multisport GPS smartwatch. Purpose built for endurance athletes, the rugged yet lightweight Enduro 2 includes built-in TopoActive maps with multicontinent coverage, a superbright LED flashlight and Garmin’s exclusive SatIQ technology to help optimise battery performance. What’s more, enhanced

Read more

Newly upgraded FineShare FineCam! A smart virtual camera makes video production easier

Posted on: August 11, 2022

Los Angeles, United States. 08 August, 2022 – FineShare Co., Ltd. announced the latest version of FineShare FineCam – an AI-powered virtual camera software. To meet the expectations of customers, FineShare FineCam now is available for Mac and rolls out some brand new features including advanced adjustment, webcam overlay, branding templates, low light video booster, auto framing, etc.

Read more
FEATURED IoT STORIES

9 IoT applications that will change everything

Posted on: September 1, 2021

Whether you are a future-minded CEO, tech-driven CEO or IT leader, you’ve come across the term IoT before. It’s often used alongside superlatives regarding how it will revolutionize the way you work, play, and live. But is it just another buzzword, or is it the as-promised technological holy grail? The truth is that Internet of

Read more

Which IoT Platform 2021? IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide

Posted on: August 30, 2021

There are several different parts in a complete IoT solution, all of which must work together to get the result needed, write IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide – Which IoT Platform 2021? authors Robin Duke-Woolley, the CEO and Bill Ingle, a senior analyst, at Beecham Research. Figure 1 shows these parts and, although not all

Read more

CAT-M1 vs NB-IoT – examining the real differences

Posted on: June 21, 2021

As industry players look to provide the next generation of IoT connectivity, two different standards have emerged under release 13 of 3GPP – CAT-M1 and NB-IoT.

Read more

IoT and home automation: What does the future hold?

Posted on: June 10, 2020

Once a dream, home automation using iot is slowly but steadily becoming a part of daily lives around the world. In fact, it is believed that the global market for smart home automation will reach $40 billion by 2020.

Read more

5 challenges still facing the Internet of Things

Posted on: June 3, 2020

The Internet of Things (IoT) has quickly become a huge part of how people live, communicate and do business. All around the world, web-enabled devices are turning our world into a more switched-on place to live.

Read more

What is IoT?

Posted on: July 7, 2019

What is IoT Data as a new oil IoT connectivity What is IoT video So what’s IoT? The phrase ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) is officially everywhere. It constantly shows up in my Google news feed, the weekend tech supplements are waxing lyrical about it and the volume of marketing emails I receive advertising ‘smart, connected

Read more
IoT Newsletter

Join the IoT Now online community for FREE, to receive: Exclusive offers for entry to all the IoT events that matter, round the world

Free access to a huge selection of the latest IoT analyst reports and industry whitepapers

The latest IoT news, as it breaks, to your inbox