Vehicle-to-grid is a technology that allows owners of electric vehicles to leverage their battery for a secondary purpose. That purpose could be to power their own house, or more practically may involve plugging your car in when parked, and allowing the electricity company to manage how the power is managed.
FCA has announced an agreement with Engie, the operator that manages the electricity-transmission grid in Italy). Under a new pilot between the two companies, the first phase of a vehicle-to-grid (V2G) pilot project in Turin, Italy, will test potential connections of the company’s vehicles to the grid.
In practical terms, the vehicle draws energy for recharging during off-peak periods and gives energy back to the grid when demand is high, thereby helping to balance supply and demand and to avoid blackouts.
Naturally EV owners would need to nominate when they need their car ready to go, like 7am on weekdays, but the stored energy in the car could be extracted, used to power other homes and businesses on the grid, between 8pm and 5am, earning the owner money, or at least credits. The car would then charge to the nominated level by the time the owner needs it.
While this approach would definitely put more cycles through the battery in the car, that’d be offset by an almost free supply of energy, making the ongoing cost of owning an EV much less.
FCA says the first phase of the system includes 32x V2G charging stations able to connect 64 vehicles.
For the second phase, which will lead to full-scale operation once testing has been completed, up to 700 vehicles will be able to be connected to the infrastructure.
This expansion is scheduled to take place next year and is expected to be operational in 2022. In addition, for the covered area where the vehicles connected to the V2G system are to be parked, Engie Italy is to partner with FCA in the construction of this vast parking shelter, which will feature around 12,000 photovoltaic panels.
FCA and Engie EPS have been awarded 25 MW of capacity in order to provide the ultra-rapid frequency regulation service (Fast Reserve