Electric vehicles could balance UK power grid cheaper!

A collaboration between Octopus Energy and ESO has unveiled the cost-effective potential of V2G technology in balancing the UK grid

Electric vehicles (EVs) could power up the UK’s grid balancing at a fraction of the cost.

That’s one of the key findings of a trial launched by National Grid ESO and Octopus, which joined forces to explore the potential of domestic Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G)-enabled EVs in balancing the UK power grid.

The trial aimed to assess the feasibility of EVs entering the Balancing Mechanism (BM) as a collective unit.

Participants in the Powerloop V2G trial, as reported by Octopus Energy, enjoyed savings of up to £180 per year compared to smart charging and up to £840 per year compared to unmanaged charging on a flat tariff.

These savings were based on an annual mileage of 10,000 miles.

Additionally, the trial highlighted the potential for V2G-enabled EVs to reduce balancing costs.

Live tests with consumers showed that these vehicles could offer a more cost-effective option for balancing the power system compared to existing alternatives within the BM.

This not only reduces consumer bills but also reduces dependence on carbon-intensive fuel sources.

The trial also demonstrated the ability to aggregate V2G-enabled EVs.

Through sessions with households, it was shown that the EVs could adjust their charging and discharging patterns to meet energy balancing requirements while still respecting the end consumers’ charging preferences.

When aggregated, these domestic assets have the potential to meet the data requirements of the BM and effectively consume and deliver energy in response to instructions.

However, the trial also identified certain barriers to entry into the BM. Some of these barriers were short-term, such as minimum threshold and aggregation requirements, which are expected to be overcome as the market for V2G-enabled EVs expands.

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