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Mitsubishi companies launch smart grid demonstration system using EVs and used battery packs

System framework for M-tech Labo. Click to enlarge.

Mitsubishi Corporation (MC), Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) and Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (Mitsubishi Electric) have completed the development and begun the operation of M-tech Labo, a smart grid demonstration system consisting of a 20 kW photovoltaic system, 5 electrically-dischargeable electric vehicles (EVs) and 80 kWh of used rechargeable batteries collected from EVs.

The purpose of this project is to demonstrate load shifting by charging at night when demand is low, storing power produced from renewable sources in rechargeable batteries, and supplying such power back to the grid when factory facilities and offices face peak demand.

Building and components. Click to enlarge.

MC, MMC and Mitsubishi Electric also expect that utilizing EV batteries and used rechargeable batteries, instead of expensive, dedicated batteries, will lower costs while promoting the environmental-benefits of renewable energy and EVs.

Tokyo Institute of Technology is playing an advisory role for the project. This demonstration project is part of the KEIHANNA Eco-City Next-Generation Energy and Social Systems Demonstration Project, one of the four smart grid initiatives authorized by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

Project targets for this fiscal year include:

  • Reduction of electricity fluctuation at the Administration Building of MMC’s Nagoya Plant by utilizing electricity from M-tech Labo at a maximum power of 50 kW (Target: 33% reduction of the 180 kW fluctuation range).

  • Validation of EIS (Electric vehicle Integration System) which aggregates data and information of available dischargeable capacity and hours of each EV while still allowing the EV to be used as a mean of transportation.

The three companies will collaborate in project implementation and application of knowledge obtained. The primary roles of each company are:

  • MC: Study of electricity-related business utilizing of rechargeable EV batteries and used rechargeable batteries.

  • MMC: Research on the effect of discharging and charging on EVs, and on the necessary information and data from EVs.

  • Mitsubishi Electric: Validation of a system that can effectively utilize rechargeable EV batteries and used rechargeable batteries.



Charging at night and delivering peak in the day is referred to as "peak shaving", it can keep natural gas turbine peaker plants offline when air conditioners in large buildings run.

This could be good for quick charging as well. I do not know about the V2G aspects, but if you want to put solar panels on the buildings, go ahead.

Huge banks of batteries charging at night off peak could be good for day time use in the summer. They could also be good for quick charging by not loading the grid with power demand transients.

Bob Wallace

Apparently individuals are beginning to use hybrid solar/battery/grid systems.

They are using modest battery packs to move some solar into the late afternoon/evening peak price hours.

Then they are purchasing cheap late night off-peak power to run things and charge their batteries for morning use before the Sun kicks in.

They are using all the electricity they make rather than selling it to the grid. Then buying the rest of what they need at minimal prices.

Nick Lyons

@Bob W:

Interesting. I'm looking into solar for our house, and I don't see the advantage of the arrangement you describe compared to net metering combined with time-of-use billing. In the latter case, you sell electricity to the grid at peak prices (say $0.30/KWhr) and buy from the grid at off-peak (say $0.07/Kwhr). In this way, you can offset your whole electric bill with a smaller array than needed to replace all your electric use. In addition, you don't have to invest in batteries. You would get some blackout protection, I suppose. Nevertheless, it sounds like an expensive way to go to me.


Grid tied with net metering is the way to go, unless you are off the grid. I could see home users of PVs and EVs having battery banks just for peak shaving and quick charging of the EVs.

If you come home from a commute and want to take another trip that night, plug it into the bank and in less than one hour you have another 100 miles range with no strain on the grid.

With Time of Use rates, you recharge the packs at night and supply the air conditioners on the grid during the is all good.


If the major day-peaking load is A/C, ice storage is probably a better bet than batteries.  That way, all major loads can be run at off-peak rates.


Future (200,000,000+) large battery pack BEVs charging during off-peak hours will become great load levelers. Smart meters being installed could better manage future network. Higher is the average load, lower should the energy cost be.


Shifting by freezing water at night works for large buildings but not the smaller ones and millions of homes. It is hard to beat being able to provide power locally when needed, this is a good idea and a great use for used EV batteries.


I don't see the supply of used EV batteries being able to get to the load-levelling market as fast as foamed plastic, coils of tubing and water.


Whatever, you just want to argue and have the last word. That takes all the fun out of interesting discussions, which is what a forum like Green Car Congress is suppose to be.


IOW, your beautiful theories keep being slain by ugly facts.


I guess you are suppose to be the source of those "ugly facts". Well, you are the source of something, I will give you that.


Source?  Nature's the source, I'm just the messenger.


You must be God's messenger, because that is the way you act.


You said it, I didn't.


You know, if you could do math you could either understand what I'm saying to you, or demonstrate to me that I'm wrong in terms I couldn't deny.

Pity you can't do math.

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