The UK government has announced a plan to invest £30m (~€33m) in revolutionary vehicle-to-grid technologies.
These vehicle-to-grid technologies are expected to unlock the potential for electric vehicles to power UK homes, and will now be funded under the government’s wider industrial strategy.
The UK has announced an ambition to become ‘a world leader in shaping the future of mobility and in the design and development of the clean technologies of the future’ and sees this plan as a means to achieve this.
The funding would enable electric cars and other vehicles to deliver electricity back to a smart grid, potentially allowing them to power homes and businesses. The newly announced £30m investment will be allocated to 21 projects pursuing revolutionary vehicle-to-grid technologies, to support research and development.
What kinds of projects is the government funding?
One of the projects that will receive funding is EDF Energy’s V2GO scheme, which aims to demonstrate how energy stored in electric vehicle batteries could be borrowed by the electricity system during times of peak demand.
Then, these vehicles could be recharged during off-peak times, when demand is less, and be ready to drive as soon as they were needed. The government’s funding will be used to demonstrate the commercial viability of the project at scale in Oxford.
Using 100 electric fleet vehicles, including cars and vans, from a number of delivery companies, taxi firms and other organisations, the projects will develop business models to demonstrate the economic case for vehicle-to-grid charging.
It is also expected to significantly reduce local emissions and improve air quality in Oxford, which is a dense urban area.
What has the government said?
Jesse Norman, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Department of Transport, said that the investment would be necessary to pave the way for the future of renewables and the UK transport sector.
He elaborated: “As the number of electric vehicles grows and their battery capabilities increase, there is a huge opportunity for them to make a significant contribution to a smart grid. These projects are at the cutting edge of their field.”