Smart Transport

Vehicle-to-grid trial shows the EV street of the future may be here sooner than we think

Applications to join the Electric Nation vehicle-to-grid (V2G) trial suggest that a growing number of households already have more than one electric vehicle (EV).

The Western Power Distribution (WPD) project, in partnership with CrowdCharge, aims to demonstrate how V2G technology can provide a solution to potential electricity grid capacity issues as the number of EVs increase. The next phase of Electric Nation was launched earlier this month (June). 

The trial revealed that more than 20% of applicants already have two or more EVs at their property, and 48% are either likely or very likely to acquire a second EV in the future, or they have already ordered a second EV.

Although the project is only recruiting households with one EV, the figures show that the numbers of EVs per household are rising alongside increasing nationwide adoption rates.

With many households already having a second EV or considering getting one in future, this so-called  ‘clustering’ may place further load on the local electricity network.

However, by using V2G technology, EVs can put energy back into the grid at peak times, therefore reducing the need for extra electricity generation or network reinforcement.

EV consideration levels are also rising as the UK emerges from lockdown, with 43% of public transport commuters saying they were considering an EV rather than using public transport for their journey to work post-lockdown, in a survey conducted by DriveElectric.

Green number plates are also set to be rolled out from autumn to help encourage drivers to make the switch, under plans to drive a green economic recovery.

Electric Nation is recruiting 100 Nissan EV owners in the WPD licence areas of the Midlands, south west and south Wales to take part in the trial of V2G smart charging technology. The trial is offering free installation of V2G smart chargers worth £5,500.

CrowdCharge is recruiting 100 people for the trial to help Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) and others to understand how V2G charging could work with their electricity networks. In the trial, each supplier will use their chargers to test their energy services utilising CrowdCharge’s demand management charger platform.

One week after the Electric Nation V2G project was launched, 200 EV drivers had applied to join the project, and the following data had emerged:

• 95% of applicants have a Nissan Leaf; 5% have a Nissan e-NV200.

• 20% of applicants have two EVs at their property.

• 1% of applicants have more than two EVs at their property.

• 3% of applicants with one EV have ordered a second EV.

• 18% of applicants with one EV are 'very likely' to acquire a second EV in the future.

• 27% of applicants with one EV are 'likely' to acquire a second EV in the future.

• 41% of applicants with two EVs also had a Nissan Leaf as their second EV.

As well as many households having more than one EV, applicants are also taking action in the area of energy, with 45% having solar PV installed at their property, and 14% having a domestic stationary battery storage device.

The V2G trial follows the first Electric Nation project from 2018/19 providing insight into people’s habits when charging their vehicle. The trial provided data from more than two million hours of car charging, revealing user habits on timings of charge, location and duration, as well as the impact of different tariffs.

By plugging in at specified times and putting energy back into the grid, active participants of the Electric Nation V2G project are expected to earn a minimum reward up to the monetary value of £120, available over the one-year trial period from March 2021 to March 2022.

Trial applicants:

• Must be resident in the Western Power Distribution (WPD) licence area (Midlands, south west and south Wales).

• Must have a Nissan EV with a battery capacity of at least 30kWh or more.

• Need to have the vehicle until the end of the trial (March 2022).

• Need to have off-road parking.

• Will use the CrowdCharge mobile app to manage charging.

• May need to switch to a new energy tariff if required by their assigned project energy supplier.

• May need to have a new smart meter put in/updated as part of the project participation.

For more information and to apply to join the project, click here

Watch now: Connecting Policy To Solutions Virtual Conference 2021

Smart Transport Conference returned on June 8th & 9th, to facilitate pivotal discussions on the future of transport. 

The UK’s most senior public and private sector transport leaders discussed the impact of Covid-19, achieving the Government’s decarbonisation ambitions, the need for more efficient living and better health, and much more.

Keynote speakers included: 

Kwasi Kwarteng, secretary of state at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), who spoke on BEIS's approach to decarbonising transport, particularly the electrification of the vehicle industry

Keith Williams, co-author of the Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail, who spoke on rail’s role in integrated transport, decarbonisation and innovation.

Rachel Maclean, parliamentary under-secretary of state at the Department for Transport, who discussed the future of transport and its pivotal role in a ‘green recovery’ from the pandemic.


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