How to meet the demand for EV infrastructure and maintain a stable network – TechCrunch


As electric vehicles (EVs) become the new normal, charging infrastructure will become a common detail blending into the landscape, available in many places from a variety of vendors: private charging stations, office parking, residential garages. and government. provided locations to fill in the gaps. We need a new energy plan for the United States to maintain a stable grid to support this national transition to electric vehicle charging.

The Biden administration announced 500,000 charging stations to be installed at national and additional level Energy storage to facilitate the transition to EVs. Integrating all of this new infrastructure and transitioning requires balancing network traffic and managing increased energy demand that extends beyond power lines and storage itself.

The majority of EV infrastructures get their electricity from the grid, which will add significant demand when it reaches scale. In an ideal situation, EV charging stations will have their own renewable energy production co-located with storage, but new programs and solutions are needed to make it available everywhere. A range of scenarios on how renewable energy can be used to power electric vehicle charging has been tested in the United States in recent years. Eventually, electric vehicles will probably even be supply energy to the grid.

These technological advances will occur as we move forward in the energy transition; Either way, the EV infrastructure will depend heavily on the US grid. This makes coordination between a range of stakeholders and behavioral change among the general public essential to maintain grid stability while meeting energy demand.

that of the White House EV charging infrastructure fact sheet indicates a technical plan on which the Ministry of Energy and the Electric Power Research Institute will work together. It is essential that utilities, energy management and storage stakeholders and the general public are included in the planning – here’s why.

Stakeholder collaboration

The charging infrastructure is currently fragmented in the United States. A large part is privatized and there are complaints unless you’re driving a Tesla it’s hard to find a charge on the road. Some electric vehicle owners have even reverted to driving gasoline vehicles. Hopefully that will change quickly.

ChargePoint and EVgo are two companies that will likely become household names as their EV networks grow. A coalition of some of America’s largest utilities – including American Electric Power, Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, Entergy, Southern Company, and the Tennessee Valley Authority – called the Electric Highway Coalition, announcement plans for a regional network of charging stations covering their public service areas.

Networks that replace private gas stations with electric vehicle charging are part of the puzzle. We also need to make sure that everyone has affordable access and that charge times are staggered – this is a top concern for every stakeholder. Having a load available in a range of locations distributes the demand, which helps keep power available and the grid balanced.

The varying needs of consumers, including location and housing, work schedules and economic circumstances, require considerations and new solutions that make electric vehicles and charging accessible to everyone. What works in the suburbs won’t work in rural or urban areas, and just imagine someone working nights in a dense urban area.

by Biden plan includes “$ 4 million to encourage strong partnerships and new programs to increase workplace pricing regionally or nationally, which will help increase the feasibility of [plug-in electric vehicle] ownership for consumers in underserved communities. Partnerships and creative solutions will also be needed.

An opportunity to make full use of the technologies we already have

“Fifty percent of the reductions we need to make to reach net zero by 2050 or 2045 will come from technologies we don’t yet have,” John Kerry noted recently causing a sensation. He then clarified that we also have technologies now that we need to implement, which have received less airtime. In fact, we are just starting to use existing renewable energy and energy transition technologies; we have yet to realize their full potential.

Currently, large-scale, distributed energy storage is used for its most simplistic capabilities, i.e. intervening when energy demand peaks and helping to maintain grid stability through services. called frequency balancing and regulation. But as the penetration of renewables increases and loads such as electric vehicles are electrified, peak demand will be exacerbated.

The role storage plays for EV charging stations seems to be well understood. On-site storage is used daily to provide energy to charge cars at all times. Utility-scale storage has the same capacities and can be used to store and then deliver renewable energy to the grid in large quantities each day to help balance the demand for electric vehicles.

A stable power system for electric vehicles combines utilities and large-scale storage with a network of subsystems where energy storage is co-located with electric vehicle charging. All systems are coordinated and synchronized to collect and distribute energy at different times of the day depending on all the factors that affect the stability of the grid and the availability of renewable energy. This synchronization is managed by intelligent power management software that uses sophisticated algorithms to predict and respond to changes in fractions of a second.

This model also helps manage the cost of electricity and the demand for EV on the grid. These subsystems could be municipality owned locations in low income areas. Such a subsystem would collect electricity from its storage asset and set the price locally on its own terms. These systems could encourage residents to use them at certain times of the day in order to make recharging more affordable by offering an alternative to the real cost of electricity during peaks in consumption when using a household outlet. , for example.

Behaviour change

The biggest challenge for utilities will be how to manage electric vehicle loads and motivate people to stagger charging their vehicles, rather than having everyone waiting to be home at night during off-peak production times. ‘renewable energy. If everyone logged in at the same time, we would end up making dinner in the dark.

While there has been talk of getting the public to bill at different times and spread demand, the motivators vary across demographics. With the ability to recharge at home and skip a trip to the “gas station” – or “powerhouse,” as it might be called in the future – many people will choose convenience over cost.

In our current mode of operation, individual energy consumption appears as an independent and isolated event for consumers and households. Electric vehicles will require everyone – from utilities and private charging stations to consumers – to be more aware of demand on the grid and to act more as energy-sharing communities.

Thus, a diverse charging network alone will not solve the problem of grid overload. A combination of a new model for managing energy on the grid and a change in behavior is needed.


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