Navigant supports first residential vehicle-to-grid charging project

12 February 2018 3 min. read

As the UK prepares for life after combustion engines, with a ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles coming into force by 2040, significant changes must be made to British infrastructure. Consulting firm Navigant has given its support to help deliver the UK Residential Vehicle-to-Grid Initiative.

A new consortium has been launched, in order to develop the first large-scale UK domestic trial of vehicle-to-grid (V2G) charging technology for drivers of electric vehicles (EV). The £7 million Octopus V2G project from Octopus Energy, Octopus Electric Vehicles, UK Power Networks, ChargePoint Services, Open Energi, Energy Saving Trust and Navigant, has been granted £3 million of government funding from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) as well as the Office for Low Emission Vehicles, and is backed by Innovate UK.

By 2040, the government will ban the sale of all new diesel and petrol cars and vans, with EV, paving the way for electricity to play a key role in future and cheaper transport, grid flexibility, energy to homeowners and faster decarbonisation. The huge level of uptake is expected to have a considerable impact on local grids, with some suggesting a purely electric vehicle travelling 10,000 miles a year could double the energy consumption of the home it charges from. Meanwhile, beyond the home, the Highways Agency has had to commit to a £15 million infrastructure programme designed to ensure that drivers are never more than 20 miles from a charging point on the UK’s A roads.

Navigant supports first residential vehicle-to-grid charging project

The smart technology trial is set to be rolled out this year, with the hope that it can help prepare the country for electrification of its roads. The scheme aims to help identify consumer behaviour and preferences, key data on demand times and flexibility, help establish future infrastructure needs and plan for charging models and packages to suit everyone in the market. The project will see 135 vehicle-to-grid chargers installed in a ‘cluster’ to see how much spare capacity from car batteries can be collected – not only potentially boosting resilience and flexibility for the network during peak demand but also giving customers the chance to sell and earn money on the energy.

Navigant, which is part of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, will enable technical innovation in the transportation sector, providing project advice and analysis over the next three years, serving as a key advisor and participant in a UK initiative aimed at developing the first large-scale trial of residential V2G charging.

Fiona Howarth, CEO, of Octopus Electric Vehicles said, “There has been a lot of talk from the side-lines about how vehicle-to-grid technology will change the face of energy, but with this consortium we will be the first in the UK to actually deliver it to hundreds of households.”

Mark Livingstone, a Director at Navigant, added, “Our project focuses on the residential market, so is quite ground breaking as V2G services are in a very early stage in this segment. Very few chargers and EVs are equipped for this role at present, so we will have technical innovation to test as well as customer response and system performance questions.”