At the Electric Drive Transportation Association (EDTA) conference in Washington, DC, GridPoint and GM are teaming to demonstrate the ability to actively manage plug-in vehicle load. In real-time, GridPoint technology is simultaneously managing the power flow to a fleet of plug-in vehicle resources, including a Chevy Volt battery pack located at GM’s Battery Lab in Warren, Mich., and a pool of simulated electric vehicle resources.
GridPoint software enables electric vehicles to be grid-aware, allowing the timing and pace of charging to be adaptively controlled to meet the needs of both drivers and the grid. Within parameters set by vehicle owners, utilities can charge vehicles in a manner that optimizes the grid—charging when renewable energy is available or when grid energy usage is low; thereby reducing grid stress and carbon emissions. During peak periods, utilities can also control the rate of charging to reduce demand spikes on the grid. (Earlier post.)
By embedding GridPoint’s software in electric vehicles, we enable utilities to offer reduced charging costs to customers and allow clean energy, such as wind and solar power, to be used as a source for recharging vehicles. Additionally, we help utilities eliminate the need to build new power plants that would otherwise be required to support the mass adoption of electric vehicles.—Tony Posawatz, Volt Vehicle Line Director, General Motors
Consumers who enroll in a utility’s charging program could receive significantly reduced charging rates, thereby reducing the overall cost of electric vehicle ownership. Additionally, the promotion of lower electric fuel costs offered by utility charging programs is expected to accelerate electric vehicle sales.
Posawatz and Karl Lewis, Chief Strategy Officer of GridPoint, delivered a plenary talk at the conference.
Leading utilities have initiated smart charging field trials to better understand the impact plug-in electric vehicles will have in their service areas. GridPoint’s software is currently controlling the charging behavior of converted plug-in Toyota Priuses and Ford Escapes in projects led by Xcel Energy, Duke Energy, Progress Energy, Austin Energy and Seattle City Light. These engagements originated with Seattle-based V2Green, acquired by GridPoint in September.