Following the news in February 2018 of the PowerLoop consortium formation, which is part of a three-year, £7m project part-funded by the UK Government via InnovateUK, Open Energi is excited to see the next project stemming from this group come to life. On Friday, Octopus Electric Vehicles and Wallbox announced their partnership to bring Wallbox’s revolutionary vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology, which is when an electric vehicle releases energy through your home and out into the local grid, to the UK. In partnership with Octopus Energy, Open Energi will lead on developing a bespoke V2G aggregation platform and will work alongside UK Power Networks to integrate domestic V2G into their flexibility services.
This will be the smallest and lightest residential V2G charge point in the country, helping the consortium’s objective to support the grid, reduce costs and deliver a more sustainable future. This step forward in technology has been achieved by using a silicon carbide inverter to switch power from DC (used by electric cars) to AC (used in homes and by the grid) at a rate much faster than previously possible. The new technology allows Wallbox to reduce the size and weight of the inverter, a component which traditionally meant V2G charge points were much heavier and larger than existing one-way charge points (where energy only flows from the grid to charge the car).
Our analysis suggests EVs could deliver over 11GW of flexible capacity to the UK’s energy system and conservatively forecasts the market providing about £1bn a year in consumer benefits by 2030. Initiatives like the PowerLoop consortium with Octopus Energy are playing a vital role in unlocking that potential at scale. As part of the consortium we have been able to draw on our extensive experience connecting, aggregating and optimising industrial equipment, battery storage and generation assets on a second-by-second basis, to demonstrate how these principles can be applied to domestic smart charging infrastructure.
V2G technology allows drivers to earn money from plugging in their electric cars. V2G discharges excess electricity from their car through their home and out to the grid at times when there is peak demand on energy networks, and recharges the car when energy demand (and energy prices) is low. The renewable energy will be based on the current 12 month fixed energy tariff provided by energy supplier Octopus Energy.
For more information on the PowerLoop bundle, register on the Octopus EV website at www.octopusev.com/powerloop.