First vehicle-to-grid charger installed as part of trial
20th Nov 2020 Danny Morgan
The first of 100 vehicle-to-grid (V2G) chargers has been installed as part of a trial to demonstrate how the technology can benefit both the grid and drivers.
Electric Nation – a collaboration between Western Power Distribution and CrowdCharge – is trialling V2G technology with 100 Nissan Leaf owners in the Midlands, South West and South Wales.
Vehicle-to-grid, or V2G, technology allows the bi-directional flow of electricity, such as from the grid to the vehicle but also from the vehicle and back to the grid.
The trial, which had over 450 applicants, wants to demonstrate how V2G technology can provide a solution to “potential electricity network capacity issues”.
In other words, as the number of electric vehicles increase it can help balance supply and demand for energy. It does this by allowing an electric car to put energy back into the grid at peak times (if the vehicle does not require the energy) and therefore reduces the need for extra electricity generation.
You can learn more about V2G charging in our vehicle-to-grid guide.
A special V2G charger is required (in this case, the Wallbox Quasar) which trial participants will have installed free of charge, as well as an energy provider that can handle the service. To take part in the trial, participants must own a Nissan Leaf as vehicle-to-grid is currently only possible using the CHAdeMO charging technology which is available on the Leaf.
Rasita Chudasama is the first Electric Nation vehicle-to-grid trial participant to have a charger installed, which happened at the end of October.
Rasita said: “I’m delighted to be part of the Electric Nation Vehicle to Grid project and to play a role in trialling this exciting new technology. By reducing the potential impact of EV charging on electricity networks, V2G should support the rapid uptake of electric vehicles, which will help us to improve local air quality and combat climate change. I’m looking forward to seeing how V2G works from an EV driver’s point of view.”
Mike Potter, CEO of CrowdCharge, said the trial will “provide a smart solution for the management of electric vehicle charging and will study the real-world benefits of V2G.”
Although the trial had four times as many applicants as required, there are still spaces open to ensure the project “secures the best possible mix in the 100 participants”.
To apply to join the trial, visit www.electricnation.org.uk
- Must be resident in the Western Power Distribution (WPD) licence area (East Midlands, West 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 at home, with room for a charger
- 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.