A consortium led by Nissan has been awarded £9.8m for 1000 Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) installations that will evaluate a commercial offer to electric vehicle fleet customers.
The chargers will be controlled by an aggregator and data will be collected to understand the technical characteristics of vehicle to grid charging for both the vehicles and the electricity networks.
The consortium, led by Nissan, will bring expertise from across the whole Vehicle-to-Grid value chain: V2G infrastructure/aggregator provider Nuvve, the energy community represented by National Grid, two Distribution Network Operators (DNOs); UK Power Networks and Northern Powergrid, with varied grid infrastructure. The research and analysis activities will be supported by Newcastle University and Imperial College London.
The e4Future project is part of the Vehicle-to-Grid competition, co-funded by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) and the department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), in partnership with Innovate UK.
In January 2018, 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 £30m 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 2700 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.
The integration of Vehicle-to-grid technology brings to life Nissan’s Intelligent Mobility vision, demonstrating how zero-emission vehicles such as the 100 percent electric Nissan LEAF and e-NV200 and energy management technologies can work in tandem to create a cleaner and more efficient energy network.
V2G technology allows electric vehicles to be fully integrated into the electricity grid and will help improve grid capability to handle renewable power, making renewable sources even more widely integrated and affordable.
Nissan is investing in Vehicle-to-Grid technology since 2015, following the commitment from 21st UN Conference on Climate Change (COP21) to trial V2G technology in Europe
Nissan’s UK-based European R&D facility, Nissan Technical Centre Europe (NTCE) in Cranfield, UK was the first Nissan entity in the company’s network of European facilities to install vehicle-to-grid technology in November 2016
Over the past year and a half in Denmark, Nissan has been testing the V2G technology as a revolutionary new way of driving. Going forward, this has become an offer open to all fleet customers throughout the country
Private EV owners and businesses with large EV fleets will have the opportunity to create mobile energy hubs by integrating their vehicles into the grid. Nissan EV owners can connect to the grid to charge at low-demand, cheap tariff periods, with an option to then use the electricity stored in the vehicle’s battery to feed back to the grid which could generate additional revenue for the EV owner.
Francisco Carranza, Managing Director of Nissan Energy at Nissan Europe said: “Nissan has been saying for a long time that the future is electric. That forward-thinking led us to produce the world’s most successful mass market EV – the Nissan LEAF. Today, our electric vehicles are not just transforming the way we drive, but also the way we live. We now look at our cars as so much more than products which simply move people from A to B – they are an intrinsic part of the way we consume, share, and generate energy. This will have a fundamental impact on the shift from fossil fuels to renewables.
“Our EVs can be plugged into the grid and support the transmission and distribution companies in making the UK grid more sustainable and more stable. The increase of electric vehicles penetration, the introduction of more and more distributed generation and storage and the overall increase in renewable energy penetration should be done smartly.
“To ensure Nissan plays a wider role in the advancement and protection of our cities, our electric V2G-ready vehicles will be used as clean mobile energy units.
“Nissan has also reiterated its bold mission to offer customers free power for their EVs. V2G introduction will change the rules of the game and make energy cheaper for everyone.”
Claire Spedding, Head of Business Development at National Grid said: “V2G technology presents a great opportunity to support the growth of electric vehicles and manage the anticipated increase in electricity demand. Energy stored in electric vehicles can be fed back into the electricity network to help manage the network at times of high demand and be an additional tool for operating Great Britain’s electricity system.
“One thousand chargers will be installed over the next 3 years across the electricity networks. Part of the demonstration project will include assessing whether EV owners are incentivised enough financially to provide power back to the grid when required, and help determine if any regulatory or policy interventions are required.
“It’s an exciting project and we’re delighted we’ve been successful in gaining funding to explore the opportunities of V2G technology”.
Gregory Poilasne, CEO of Nuvve said: “Nuvve is excited to be involved in this highly innovative UK based project leveraging our experience gained from running the world’s only working commercial aggregator across multiple Transmission System Operator markets. The Nuvve GIVe platform is capable of optimising highly distributed, dynamic, kW-scale resources such as EV batteries and stationary storage, at the edge of the grid allocating these resources across a range of ancillary grid services”.
Ian Cameron, Head of Innovation at UK Power Networks said: “Electric vehicles are effectively energy resources on wheels, so there are tremendous opportunities to explore how electricity networks can utilise any spare capacity in those batteries to benefit our customers. As fleet operators weigh up the move towards converting to low emission vehicles, this technology could see fleets generating an additional income stream from Distribution System Operator flexibility markets while they are parked in depots and car parks. Selling electricity back to the network could help boost the business case for major operators, making the large-scale adoption of electric vehicles more viable”.
Patrick Erwin, Policy and Markets Director at electricity network operator Northern Powergrid said: “The growth in electric vehicles will increase the opportunities to connect to local power networks providing greater system flexibility and use of renewable energy sources. This project – combined with our network investments and wider innovation programme – will support our preparations for the rapid growth of electric vehicles and ensure that all partners involved remain at the forefront of a low-carbon revolution that delivers for customers”.
Myriam Neaimeh, Newcastle University’s project lead on vehicle-to-grid said: “The Government’s announcement will be a real game changer as we move towards decarbonising the grid.
“This will be the first, large scale demonstration of vehicle to grid technology anywhere in the world and crucially, this project brings together all the key players for the first time – a giant of the automotive industry with energy providers, infrastructure experts and academics – so we can work together to really make this happen. It’s a really exciting time and fantastic that Newcastle University has been involved right from the beginning”.
Goran Strbac, Chair in Electrical Energy Systems at Imperial College London said: “Earlier studies carried out by the Imperial College London team have clearly demonstrated that in order to increase the share of renewables in electricity supply the production and consumption of electricity will need to become more flexible. V2G is one of the most promising flexible technologies to emerge with an increased uptake of EVs. It can provide valuable services to a range of stakeholders in the energy sector, from transmission and distribution network operators to energy suppliers. We are keen to use the opportunity to analyse data from V2G trials to be carried out in the e4Future project to obtain a detailed understanding of how flexibility from EVs can help the system reduce carbon emissions at low cost for the customers”.