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ClipperCreek and Silver Spring Join PG&E and EPRI in EV Smart Charging Pilot

ClipperCreek, Inc., a producer of plug-in electric vehicle charging infrastructure, and partner Silver Spring Networks, a provider of smart grid solutions, are participating in a plug-in electric vehicle (EV) pilot program sponsored by the Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).

In April, the two companies announced the jointly development of the first fully integrated, Level 2 Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) smart charging station. (Earlier post.)

The pilot will enable PG&E and EPRI to test and validate the security, scalability and functionality of smart charging technology integrated with the smart grid. Findings will be open to a broad audience, helping to set best practices for EV charging and utility integration of EVs across North America.

Set to begin in autumn of 2010, the San Francisco Bay Area-based pilot combines emerging plug-in electric vehicle technology with the scalable, secure, and reliable smart grid network already deployed at PG&E. As part of this pilot, Silver Spring-enabled ClipperCreek charging stations will be integrated with PG&E’s Smart Grid network platform.

Charging stations will relay metered electricity usage data in the same way a meter on a house does. This architecture enables the utility to directly monitor and meter the charging station, separate from a house’s electricity load, and to understand the impact of various approaches to EV charging. At the same time, consumers gain greater visibility into the impact their charging options have on cost, grid reliability and the environment.

Silver Spring provides the hardware, software and services that allow utilities to deploy and run multiple advanced applications, including Smart Metering, Demand Response, Distribution Automation and Distributed Generation, over a single, unified network. Silver Spring’s Smart Energy Platform is based on open, Internet Protocol (IP) standards, allowing continuous, two-way communication between the utility and devices on the grid. Silver Spring has numerous deployments with leading utilities in the US and abroad, including Florida Power & Light, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, Pepco Holdings, Inc., Jemena Electricity Networks Limited and United Energy Distribution, among others.

Separately, ClipperCreek announced that it shipped its 3,000th electric vehicle charging station since its founding in 2006. The company has enjoyed a significant increase in business over the last couple of months as the market prepares for vehicle rollouts.

Most of its recent sales have been in the public infrastructure market; ClipperCreek is shipping products to the US, Europe and Asia.

Other recent developments for ClipperCreek include:

  • ClipperCreek has started shipping the highest power EVSE in the industry, a UL-listed, 75 Amp, 18 kW, SAE-J1772 compatible unit. Not only do these units allow trucks to charge up overnight, but keeping the truck compatible with SAE-J1772 allows drivers to top off during the day at, soon to be numerous, public charging stations. This August, ClipperCreek will deliver 3-phase units running from 21 kW to 36 kW (non-SAE, but to UL standards).

  • ClipperCreek, Inc. is partnering with Liberty Plug-Ins to allow for municipalities to be reimbursed for their electricity. While ClipperCreek has long spoken out against excessive subscription services and their negative affect on the industry, it has always been in favor of the parking meter model. This model eliminates high transactional overhead.

  • ClipperCreek is also announcing a relationship with McNaughton-McKay of Detroit, a 100-year old electrical distribution company.

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