A new consortium has been launched to boost Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) electric vehicle charging in the UK, with a trial of more than 100 charge points due to be installed as part of a £7 million project.
Made up of Octopus Energy, Octopus Electric Vehicles, UK Power Networks, ChargePoint Services – which operates the GeniePoint EV charging network – Open Energi, the Energy Saving Trust, and Navigant, the consortium also has £3 million in funding from government offices OLEV and BEIS via Innovate UK.
The project will see 135 V2G chargers in cluster deployments, which will allow further research into the impact of comprehensive EV uptake on the UK’s National Grid.
The initiative will also allow EV drivers to make money from their cars while they are not being driven, with the electric vehicle able to power the home during peak times or selling spare power back to the grid, before charging again during off-peak energy demand times. Customers will be offered a bundle, which includes a two-way charger and support systems when they lease a V2G compatible car.
Fiona Howarth, CEO of Octopus Electric Vehicles said: “Octopus Energy was founded to drive down the cost of energy to customers and the planet, and Octopus Electric Vehicles is the next phase in that mission.
“There has been a lot of talk from the sidelines 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. We’re delighted to be working with this consortium of visionary companies, and proud to be backed by Innovate UK.”
Mark Thompson, Senior Innovation Lead at Innovate UK added: “Vehicle-to-Grid is one of the most iconic parts of the electric vehicle domain, and one that represents a great opportunity for engaging society with the energy system for win-win benefit.
“The Octopus V2G project is part of a creative, diverse and ambitious group of V2G projects announced today that are way ahead of anything being done currently world-wide, and give the UK a genuine competitive edge in the electrification of transport.”
Alex Bamberg, Managing Director, ChargePoint Services, said: “ChargePoint Services’ GeniePoint Network continues to be at the cutting edge of delivering the smartest and most reliable electric vehicle charging network in the UK. With this consortium, we join with existing partners to enable us to provide real benefits to the end user both in terms of efficiency and reduced cost.”
Ian Cameron, Head of Innovation at UK Power Networks commented: “Electric vehicles are effectively energy sources on wheels, so there are tremendous opportunities to explore how electricity networks can use any spare capacity in those batteries to benefit our customers.
“In the future you could use your car battery to power your house or earn money by selling its spare energy back into the network at peak times, and all of this whilst ensuring you have enough energy for your next day’s commute. We’re innovating to keep our customers moving at the lowest possible cost.”